Discussion Questions about Human Nature

Grade Levels: 9 through 12

Sunshine State Standards:

View all Sunshine State Standards


Take a position on one side or the other. Defend your position.

  1. Life is a constant struggle: those not powerful enough to rise to the top deserve whatever they get.
  2. People find it easier to do evil than to do good.
  3. Most people are likely to conform rather than act on their own individual values.
  4. Most people would prefer to rely on miracles than to depend on the fruits of their own labor.
  5. Most people need something to worship.
  6. Most people avoid the truth if it is painful.
  7. War is the natural outgrowth of human nature.
  8. Most people need authority to tell them what to do.
Discussion Questions:
  1. No one likes to be different. It is difficult to stand up to your peers and disagree with them. Think of a time in your life when you stood up for what you believed - even in the face of ridicule from your peers. Describe the situation either in writing or with 2-3 others in a group.
  2. One man/woman can make a difference. In America today, people sometimes feel like they can't make a difference. Everything is so big, powerful, and difficult to change. But it can be done. Think of situations in your own life or lives of your family or friends where one person's help has made a difference. Share, or write about this experience.
  3. What is a hero? What qualities do heroes have? Think of people you think of as heroes and explain why you feel the way you do. These people can be personal heroes in your life, heroes you have seen in movies, or read about in books. Get into groups of four. Each group member should pick a hero and defend his/her choice.
  4. In the 1930s many Americans feared that immigrants would compete for scarce jobs. What was the economic situation in the U.S. in the 1930s? Can you understand why Americans might have had an anti-immigration attitude? What is the economic situation today? How do Americans feel about immigrants today? Compare and discuss.

A Teacher's Guide to the Holocaust
Produced by the Florida Center for Instructional Technology,
College of Education, University of South Florida © 2005.

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