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Who are we? Brookwood

Many thanks to BGA students for all their comments in response to the wordles that were posted yesterday! I saw a handful of topics or themes repeat themselves in those comments, and I want to let Brookwood students weigh in. So, Brookwood, here are a couple of questions to which you might respond:

  • The issue of politeness and rudeness. It seems to be a general perception among BGA students that northerners do not respond to adults by saying “yes, sir,” or “no, ma’am,” and this may be what leads some of them to view northern students as lacking manners. It’s true that kids up here do not generally say “sir” and “ma’am,” so there’s no need for you to confirm that. Instead, the question is, if you consider yourselves to be polite or thoughtful, what are the ways that you see that in action in your lives– I mean, concrete examples? If saying “yes, ma’am” is an example of southern manners, what are some examples of how manners manifest themselves in the North?
  • Which of the words in the BGA wordle are accurate, from your perspective? Lots of BGA students are wondering that, so let’s have you respond here.

99 Comments

    • We grew up to always say “please,” “thank you,” “yes ma’am,” and so on. When people don’t say those things we consider it rude and disrespectful.

      • We say “please” and “thank you” too, but we just don’t take it as seriously as you guys do in the south. No offense though, i’m sorry if that seemed offensive.

      • I think the reasons my classmates and I said y’all and ma’am is because for example in country or southern movies, usually everyone is saying yes ma’am or sir. We did not mean for this to be disrespectful or rude at all, It’s just what us as the north picture the south talking like.

    • I grew up being taught that you had to be polite to your elders and that you should show kindness and respect to everyone. So I guess it shows that you respect someone and we usually consider it to be normal when you’re talking to a teacher or a friends parent.

    • When our class wrote things about the north we had no idea anyone else would see these other than out class. With that being said most of the things said about you guys being rude was complete honesty or someone just trying to be funny. It was not about all of you at Brookwood in general it was just about the north.

      • Most of us our raised to say things such as “please” and “thank you.” Also, my parents are always getting used to always get on my case for not looking people in the eye, so now I look people in the eye. We have similar customs in terms of being polite. I think you just caught us on the wrong note, because as a generalization, I think we are pretty good at being polite, although we don’t say “Sir” and “Ma’am.”

    • Its funny because I go to camp in Alabama and when I go there I am looked at funny when I don’t say yes ma’am or yes sir. It’s not my fault that I don’t say that, like Tucker said that’s how I was raised. You can’t expect me to change how I address people just by not being “polite.”

    • I believe that is very true, because we have all be raised in different ways. We’re used to the aspects we follow by, and it’s very polite to address an elder or someone for this matter with yes ma’am and yes sir, depending on the type of person.

  1. I think that both schools are polite but just in different ways. The kids a BGA were raised to say things like “yes, sir” or “no ma’am” and kids at Brookwood were not raised like that. We were raised so that saying yes to an adult or a teacher is usual and is considered polite. This is just another example of a difference between the different schools.

      • Yes I agree that both schools are polite. I feel like I can reflect on the differences between the south and the north because I lived in the south for five years before moving to Massachusetts. Therefore, I can say that my grandmother who is from the south considers it very rude when I do not say “yes ma’am”. But my parents who are from the north do not even notice it when I just respond by saying “yes”. So I think that neither school is trying to be impolite, we just have different views on what is considered polite/impolite because of the way we were raised.

  2. I noticed on the word cloud about the north you mentioned money. The north is not much different than any other place in the world. Sure there may be wealthy people, but there are just as many not so wealthy people around. I’m sure the same can be said about the south.

  3. A lot of the comments apply to just New York, like big apple, subway, and Yankees. Other words are only in the big cities. But, for us, we don’t live in a huge city, so there aren’t really any big factories or skyscrapers in our general area. Also, there are hot dogs and pizza, but, this food is also in a lot of other places. Lastly, the generalization that all of us have money is quite large. There are many people in the north who don’t have a lot of money.

    • I agree with Katie and what she said about big cities and smaller cities. There is probably a similar amount of big cities and smaller cities. But I think that the word MODERN on the wordle does not apply to most houses in smaller cities and in towns. I know many places that used to be old farms or something. I guess what I am saying is..what do you mean by modern.

    • I agree, and there are also parts of the south like the major cities that have a few of those skyscrapers and have become more industrialized, and sometimes the influence of etiquette isn’t as strong there either. I think it all depends on what the generation before was taught in that family, and it all just eventually gets passed along.

  4. A lot of these stereotypes are true, though most of them apply to New York and New York City. Responding to that, here in Massachusetts, we absolutely hate the Yankees, and snow has been sparse this year. Unless you live in Boston or some other major city, most people live in houses, not apartments. I can understand seeing the North as all cities and snow, but when it’s not winter, it’s actually very warm up here. I also love Elf. That movie is great.

  5. In BGA’s wordle, I can understand a lot of the words. For instance, when you said Santa Clause, though it was confusing at first, you thought of a man who lives in the NORTH pole. A lot of your words, such as cold, winter, New York, and Yankees are correct, but there are others that are very hurtful. I would like to know why you think we are inferior, superficial, and mean. I can understand rude, because we don’t say “yes m’am” and “no sir” but are there other reasons why you would call us all those negative things. If you could make it more clear, maybe we could learn more about one another and how you perceive the Northerners. Thanks!

    • I would like to apologize for any of the words that offended our class. We had no idea that the words we wrote would be shared with another school. Our grade has more than a few jokesters and some of us were just writing what came to mind first. Yes ma’am and sir are expected when talking to an adult especially the further south you go. When Northerners don’t know our culture, they might unintentionally offend some people when they travel south. The same goes for Southerners in the north. When you don’t have a deep understanding of the culture, it is easy to make mistakes like that.

  6. Here at Brookwood even though we don’t say yes sir/ no sir or yes ma’am/ no ma’am, we still reply to our teachers and parents and other elders in a respectful way.

  7. I do not think that we are rude, jerks, or snooty. We may have a different way of talking to our elders but we still have respect for them in other forms. We still pay attention to them while they are talking to us and we do what they ask us to do.

  8. Here in the northern states we don’t say “yes ma’am” or “no sir” but things like that don’t make us rude or not it’s simply how we are raised if we were raised to say “yes sir” our perceptions of kindness may be more or less the same.

  9. There is a clear seperation between the “north” and the “south,” in terms of culture, language, and the way we view the world. Words “southerners” consider neccesiary such as “Ma’am” and “Sir” are used as much by northern states. We just weren’t raised to use these terms. It gives the south and the north a different perspective on the topic of being polite. Although our lack of using these terms may seem offensive to you, its perfectly normal to us. What other actions are considered rude to your society?

    • Some other things that are considered rude are not looking people in the eye when they are talking to you. When you have other people in your car or house or anywhere not greeting or speaking to them either individually or as a whole is considered very impolite. Another thing is not saying thank you the cafeteria workers or the FedEx man or even the mail man if you are able. You should always be polite to teachers, your parents and anyone who is older than you but is not in high school or collage usually. Another thing is eating whatever food the host/hostess serves to you at a party or sleepover. Usually if someone else pays for your food or movie ticket or anything you should try to pay them back or at least offer to. If your neighbor asks to borrow something you should always lend them it or it to them, and if you have a new neighbor greeting them and maybe giving them something like cookies or brownies is never frowned upon.

  10. 1/8/15
    Hello, most of the words you guys said are true. Such as the weather and the sports teams, although we do not support the Yankees at all. I can see how some of you see us as rude. We do not say yes ma’am, no ma’am, yes sir, no sir, because that was how we are raised. But we are not rude because we don’t say that. Instead of saying yes ma’am, no ma’am… we say Mr. or Mrs. then their last name unless they tell us otherwise. I can also see how we are “rude” because you picture the north mainly as New York. New Yorkers during rush hour and on the streets are sometimes very rude. But we live 5 hours away from there and on the streets in Boston Brookwood student are not rude. I can also see how you guys think we’re rude because of our wordle. What we said on our wordle was based on the history we have been told about the south. I do agree that the rednecks and hillbillies was too much but some people never thought this was going to be posted so they wrote “funny” things.

    I have a question: Why do you guys think we are inferior and superficial?

  11. We were raised in a different way than you were. Here we weren’t raised to say Sir or Ma’am, so if we don’t use those words than it isn’t impolite. It is actually odd because it is used so rarely.

  12. One of your words on the word cloud was seafood. In the area where we live, seafood is a pretty big deal. Brookwood is only a fraction of a mile away from the ocean, and we take many science trips to the beach to study the ocean and its organisms. You guys were correct in putting seafood and ocean on your word cloud.

  13. I had noticed that in your word cloud, a large word was inferior. It is quite vague, and I am not quite sure how you intended that, however, I can assure you that not everybody in the north is “inferior” and I imagine the same for the south. Also, another word on the word cloud was skiing. This is actually very true, at least in New England. Actually, the majority of people in our grade either ski or snowboard in the winter.

  14. Words on the Wordle are sometimes stereotypical, but sometimes they are true. I believe that “anti-slavery” is an incorrect assumption that us as northerners at the time of the civil war were anti-slavery. We didn’t really care slavery or not, we just didn’t want to split up the country.

  15. It is hard to perceive someone as rude when the south and the north have very different cultures. We as children were raised differently by our family and society which makes what we see as rude or polite different. I can say that some people in the north are rude you can also say that for the south. You will never go to a place were everyone is raised like angels and everyone is perfectly polite. Where there is civilization there will be disrespect. Rude is not a word to represent the north but it is applicable for some people in our society.

  16. On the wordle that you made about us I noticed that you said a lot about us being rude or impolite. I do not believe that this is true for a few reasons. First, we have been told that when you (BGA) address your teachers using “sir” or “ma’am” which we do not use. Just because we have different customs than you, doesn’t mean we’re less polite than you. Some of us do not use proper manners all the time, but I’m sure that is the same down below The Mason-Dixon Line.

    • I totally agree with you. You see, I was raised the same way you guys were. While I have lived in Tennessee for almost 10 years, I was not born here and was not raised as a southerner. My entire family is from the D.C. Maryland area, or New Jersey. I was not raised to say “yes ma’am” or “no sir” but living in the area I do, it would be disrespectful not to, so I have adapted and it now seems more normal. Of course, I’m sure if I moved back up north, I would revert to my old self. It isn’t a matter of the North being “rude” and the south being “polite”, it’s just a difference in cultures.

  17. Going back on my previous comment I have to contradict you saying that we’re rude. We have a code of ethics which states several points that have to do with respecting each other, taking responsibility for your actions, and more. I’ve noticed that you have a code of ethics type thing at your school and I would be interested to hear what your’s is like.

    • Ours is called the honor code, it basically says I will not lie, I will not cheat, I will not steal, I will not support dishonorable behavior. They are also a bunch of unspoken rules that everyone should know to follow. On all of our tests and papers and quizzes we have to put I Pledge on it to show that we followed the honor code whenever we were filling out and turning in the work.

  18. I don’t think that everyone in the north is rude. I think that being rude is a stereotype made by lots of movies that are located in NYC because people in NYC are stereotypically rude but that isn’t true for everyone in NYC. In movies based in NYC people are always show as rude but that isn’t true. Lots of people are nice in the north and I think that people usually highlight the bad side of a society rather than the good side because it is more interesting but not always true. I think that is what happened in both wordle. We always hold the door for people and let ladies go first just like you. I make dinner for my family sometimes because my mom is tired. That’s just one example of the many selfless and polite things we do that you probably do to.

  19. You said that we are rude, but there are many things that prove that wrong. We say please and thank you when we are offered something, and when we are in the class room, we wait to be called on to speak. We try not to interrupt each other. We also have good table manners. For example, we never put our elbows on the table when we are eating, because to us, that is a sign of rudeness.

  20. Some of you guy’s words were pretty accurate about the North. Cold is definitely true. It was -1 this morning at my house. Factories and industry is pretty accurate, because Massachusetts was a major textile manufacturer in the 1800s. Seafood is accurate. Gloucester, the town next to us, is the oldest fishing port in the US. I also saw immigrants, which is true for all of our ancestors. I myself am Irish, German, and Scottish. Hockey is also pretty popular here in Massachusetts.

  21. I also noticed that you said that we are influenced by foreigners, that is true. I am Irish myself many of my friends are not 100% american. That is one of the true words.

  22. There were lots of true and not true words in the wordle like the Patriots is an important team in the New England and like Portia D said it is in fact very cold here right now. But, we aren’t rude. We in fact are very polite we always say please and thank you, we aren’t whiny, we don’t ask for more than we need, we don’t expect the things we don’t need, we are kind to each other. These are all reasons why we aren’t rude but not everybody is perfect so of course we can be rude at times but not as much as you think we are.

    • Everyone can be rude at times, that’s just how it works. Anywhere you go, there are different type of people. I myself know not everyone of you is rude, just because of where you’ve grown up in. There is no need to explain why you are not rude, because it doesn’t apply to every single person. No one comes close to being perfect, some people just try harder then others.

  23. I think BGA was right in the wordle when they wrote skyscrapers. We do have a good amount of skyscrapers in the North in 2 of the major cities, Boston and New York City. Also I agree with you when you wrote crowded because it is crowded in those big cities. But I think that the north is not just all the city. For example Brookwood is in Manchester by the Sea and that is a very small town. It has respectful people who in my opinion, are all very polite.

  24. Although different regions have different views on what is polite, there are a few country-wide phrases that we use at Brookwood and in Massachusetts that are the same as the phrases you use in the south. (I know this because I used to live there.) When someone helps us we always say “thank you very much” which is considered polite. We also use the word “please” when talking to our peers, teachers, and parents. So overall, our two schools are both polite, just in different ways.

  25. I agree with all the winter activities like hockey and snow and cold. If you look at all the NHL teams most of them are based in the north, specifically the north east. Those are completely true.

  26. Some things you said are very true, like how it’s colder up here and how we live near the ocean and like seafood. However, some things you said aren’t exactly true. You talk all about the city, apartments, factories, broadway and taxis. That basically only applies to New York, and most of the states are suburbs. Everyone lives in houses and theres plenty of wildlife and ponds and streams and forests. I’ve only seen a couple of taxis up here, and only in Boston. Also, where did the things like “uptight”, “jerks”, and “inferior” come from? I know, at least, the people in this community are kind people who help each other. I know I can count on people to help if i’m having trouble with, say, a math equation or if I dropped my books, someone would help me pick them up. I don’t see why you call us rude, we love helping! We also take responsibility for our actions, and we always say please and thank you. I can see, though, why you might have thought so, as there are many stereotypes floating around. We thought things of you that probably aren’t true either. I know I felt horrible looking at the things our class said, and I just hope we can be friends and equals because you guys seem really nice 🙂

    • When someone says “North East”, the first thing that comes to mind is the cities and industry. My grandparents used to live on Lake Champaign in the upstate of NY so I know there are more rural areas than cities.

  27. On the wordle you mentioned “Sea food”, that is true. The seafood industry is very strong here. However, we have lots of problems with it because of depleting fish populations, this causes more and more of the seafood industry to move to Alaska and other paces farther north than New England. Since we live on the coast we do get to go fishing for fun and for sport.

  28. I personally think that rudeness depends on the person because a person who was brought up in the city, might influence there decisions then somebody who was brought up in the suburbs. Something that you (BGA) got right is modern, because Boston is a developing and growing city. For example, new restaurants, building innovations and economy are improving.

  29. BGA, when you said in the wordle that northerners were rude, you were kind of right, but you were also kind of wrong. It’s true that there are some rude people in the North. If any of you have been to New York, you know that sometimes when you accidentally bump into people, they usually either look at you in an odd way, or they start saying things like, “What’s your problem?!” But that is not what all northerners are like. For example, here at Brookwood, we have a Code of Ethics. In this code, there are four ethics: Respect for People, Respect for Property, Honesty, and Integrity. If one or more of these ethics are breached, then there will be consequences. I’m not sure what these consequences are, and I hope I never find out. This is one of the ways the Brookwood community keeps its students respectful and polite.

    • At BGA we have an Honor Code, similar to your Code of Ethics. When many southerners travel north, they mainly go to the cities an only experience a small sliver of the north. From there they base their opinion of the Northerners and the north. Since they don’t get to see other parts of the northeast they never can build an accurate opinion on the north and its people.

  30. I think that we are both pretty much the same, we live in the same country! I think that we have differences but together we are one nation that works together. I would love to hear and BIG differences.

  31. Somethings from the BGA wordle are true. I know that you guys are wanting to know what was true from it, so here it is. Freedom is true because every state has freedom. So is anti-slavery. It is also sometimes cold, like today, it is -2 degrees, but in the Summer and Spring, it is very nice and beautiful out. There are also other true things about the north from the wordle but they do not matter as much.

    • The cold statement is true because it gets extremely cold up here. Right now it is -2 degrees. Also New York sort of speaks for it’s self and in the 1800’s there were hundreds of immigrants coming into New York.

  32. We are very cold, this morning we could not have recess because it was in the negatives. Also I love hockey and we have many cities up here. So, many of the things you guys said were true but saying we were rude, snooty, and jerks doesn’t make sense to me.

  33. BGA, some of the words you said were true, but a lot of them are mostly about cities. The big cities do tend to be really crowded and have lots of skyscrapers. That is true. In the cities, people are more rude than in other parts of the north. So that is true. Also, it is cold, we do have jackets, and there is snow in the north.

  34. When you log into this website is says Howdy. Sir or ma’am is not much different it is just a choice of language. We normally do not choose to use this language. I have seen many movies that take place in the south and they choose to use language similar to this (for example: Holes). This is what I think makes us associate the South with accents and words like sir or ma’am.

  35. i agree with everyone, some things that the kids from BGA’s wordle said were true but some were just un necessary. But they did say things such as cold and hockey which are true, mostly cold.

  36. I notice there are a lot of things to do with weather in your wordle, rainy, jacket, Snow, etc. I can actually agree a lot with all of these. I have been to Nevada and Texas and I know first hand that our weather is more diverse than yours. I also noticed that equality and inferior are right next to each other, what do you mean by that?

  37. There are somethings that BGA said on their wordle that were true. For example, it is very cold in the north and there is a lot seafood. But not all of the north is modern only parts of Boston and New York and other northern cities are modern.

  38. Something that I definitely think is true, is that it is more crowded here than in the Southern states. I lived in Texas and have visited nearby Southern states and definitely think it is more spread out down South. Up here everything is set up weirdly and everything is squished together, including the people who live here.

    • Our school is just south of Nashville in a town called Franklin. I think of Nashville as crowded but to your class it might feel wide open compared to the cities near you.

    • I used to live in Shanghai, China, which is the 5th largest city in the world, bigger than New York! Personally I dislike the rural feel of Tennessee, the city was more convenient with everything nearby.

  39. I think that some of the words that you have on your wordle are true. For example, I agree with your reference to hockey because I play it. Also, there are many teams around me that play hockey and It has been part of me since I was born.

  40. Because there is a common misperception that us northerners are rude, I would like to prove that misperception wrong. The Brookwood code of ethics includes: respect for people, respect for property, honesty and integrity; which all of us here at Brookwood follow. Not many northerners are rude most are very friendly and most have great integrity. The Brookwood community has never been rude or disrespectful place and we have always been respectful and thoughtful of each other.

    • Agreed, but not totally agreed. I was not one of the BGA students who put “rude” on the wordle, but you have to understand where they are coming from. I’m from the north, and was not raised as a southerner, despite living here most of my life, so I can definetly see where you are coming from. You see, most of my classmates expeirences with the north is visiting NYC and other big cities, so I’m sure you can see how they think of rude when they think of the north. Also, you said Brookwood has an ethics code and Brookwood is a nice and polite place and I believe you completely. You have to understand that my classmates were thinking about people they met in NYC and Boston, not in suburban communities like Brookwood.

  41. Although some of the words you used on your Wordle, where correct such as “cold”, or “hockey” others where not as much.To address the issue of “rudeness”, or “unpoliteness” because we do not address elders or adults saying “yes, sir,” or “no, ma’am,” is just a matter of how we were raised.Instead we call them “Mr.” or “Mrs.” and there last name unless told otherwise.It’s just a matter different cultures;habits and different aspects of how we were raised.We also treat our friends and family with kindness and respect.And with that said I would like to prove that common misperception wrong.

  42. I feel like quite a few people who live in the South tend to think of the North as New York or Boston, which is understandable since they are big cities. To tell you the truth, most places in the north are very different from the way Boston and New York function. Let’s use Modern for example. Not all of the north is modern, in fact most of it isn’t. I actually feel like a lot of the southern states (Florida being the most prominent example), are more modern than most of the northeastern states (Maine and New Hampshire, especially.) Some of the things you said about the north are very true, however. The fact that it’s cold is very true, especially today (This morning was -5 degrees, with a windchill near -25! It barely gets that cold here, though.) Does it ever get cold where you guys live? Also do you guys get snow? Sorry I’m pummeling you guys with questions, I just love the weather. Anyway, I look forward to learning a bit more about the South. I’m interested to find out how you guys think of the Civil War compared to how we think about it.

    • Right now it’s about 30 degrees, but in the past few days it has been in the 10s which is pretty cold for here. We also don’t get snow very often. About once or twice a year we might get about an inch of snow.

    • In the winter it’s usually between 30 degrees at the warmest,and 10 degrees at the coldest. Summer Usually reigns between 65 degrees to 85 degrees. Also when we have better winters we get major snow storms and snow days. This year hasn’t been to great for snow days, so we all really want a snow day.

  43. Just to currently update you about whats going on here, we just had a major blizzard (the blizzard of 2015), and 2 other smaller storms. We set a record, for having about 40inches of snow in 7 days. Now we have 2-3ft on the ground, and are expected to get another foot through the next few days. Lastly we’ve had 4 snow days in the last two weeks, so we’ve missed a good amount of school. What is going on in Tennessee?

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