Point - imitation
Explanation – imitation is… people copy each other in order to fit in with others, shows us how to fit in make friends, as we tend to make friends with people who are similar to us, Reference – Sewell 2000 cultural comfort groups
Criticise – this seems to back up the idea that people imitate in order to feel comfortable and copy each other to learn norms values
Point – ethnocentrism, we believe what we are told and take it as the only truth Explanation –ethnocentrism is… this means that people are taught this is the norms and values of society this then means we only accept this way of thinking even if it is not politically correct. We can adopt our teachers views, subconsciously. Reference – Gillborn 2001
Criticise – changes self belief
Socialization is the process of learning the norm and values in order to conform to the norms and roles required for integration into a group or community. One way the education system socializes children is through the process of imitation. Imitation is the copying of patterns of activity of groups or individuals. This process of imitation is very common in the early years of the education system (primary school). It means that children are likely to copy each other’s behaviors; this is in order to learn new skills but also for them to be able to socialize with others to show that they can fit in and act like the rest in order to make friends, this has also been known to happen with adults as well especially when they have been taken outside their own “comfort zone”, they adopt the tactic of copying others in order to blend in and make friends. This enables children to fill a gap that through primary socialization is left empty. This is the ability to communicate with people outside the close family i.e. parents, brothers, sisters. Through imitation it leads others to believe that they are the same and are interested in similar things thus making it easier to get along. This happens in select friendship groups were one person may dress a certain and others decide that they will dress similarly to make them seem similar. Furthermore, in younger pupils, there are certain “playground fashions”, this could be things like Football stickers. Once one or two children start collecting them, more and more are likely to copy and start collecting as well. This idea is backed by Sewell’s 2000 study into cultural comfort groups. Sewell’s research stated that people are more likely to include themselves into groups or peers that share similar interests or come from similar backgrounds. This backs the idea that children imitate each other in order to feel comfortable around one another so they don’t feel like outcasts. The behavior that is imitated is repeated so often that it the becomes part of the child’s norms and values which then stays with them throughout their life and is also passed on to others.
Ethnocentrism is judging someone else’s culture solely based around your own and thinking that yours is superior. Ethnocentrism can be found throughout the education system and can also be based on a child’s teacher. In primary education, children are taught to effectively absorb the information that they are told. This means whatever they hear, they believe as the truth. This means that a child’s norms and values can be altered or even forced upon them by many people like teachers and parents but also the education system itself. The values of a teacher can be passed on to their pupils subconsciously even if they are aware that their own views are not politically correct or seen as abnormal. David Gillborn’s study of ethnocentrism in the education system back this idea. Gillborn states in his key findings that; “The Black middle classes seldom make explicit mention of racism as a barrier to their children’s educational success, even if there is evidence for it. Experience tells them that the term ‘racism’ is likely to be met with resistance and antagonism by teachers, tutors and school staff.” This implies that the white majority of society is in denial of racism that is evident with in the education system. Its findings suggest that the education system favours white pupils power black pupils and that the black pupils are treated differently. He suggest this is due to people being ethnocentric and feeling that whites should hold power because they are superior. Furthermore, it has been said that black pupils are treated differently in school. The BBC published an article that said “Schools are in danger of giving the impression that they treat black pupils more harshly than white pupils for similar offences”, this was taken from the school watchdog. “In a survey of 10 secondary schools with high levels of absenteeism, the Office for Standards in Education in England (Ofsted) found that some treated black pupils more harshly than white in a way which seemed "inconsistent" ”. This makes the point that the education system alters the norms of people through their educational journey and the roles that some pupils feel they can achieve especially in black people. This occurs due people believing certain norm or values are superior to others and then these ideas are passed on to others who adopt the same norms and values.