Lesson Plan

The story of the Third Wave experiment as told by the students and their teacher, Ron Jones

Lesson Plan A documentary about the 1967 Third Wave experiment in fascism that took place at Cubberley High School in Palo Alto, California. The charismatic teacher, Ron Jones, created a classroom setting wherein students subjugated personal freedom for the good of the community. Within one week, 30 students grew to 200. Taking on a life of its own, the Third Wave students unwittingly re-enacted the roots of the Third Reich. Replete with salutes and Gestapo-like informants, the experiment soon attracted scores of students throughout Cubberley as well as neighboring schools, spiraling the exercise not only out of Jones' control but the students' as well. Original students, Ron Jones, school administrators and Dr. Philip Zimbardo (creator of the Stanford Prison Experiment) have been interviewed for this film. What makes the film so unique is that the director was a member of the original Third Wave class.

Spring, 1967: Disillusionment, anger and confusion bubble to the surface of the nation's psyche. American youth are on the precipice of a social revolution and, for a few tumultuous days Ron Jones, a young, gifted, high school history teacher attempts a startling social experiment that will inspire comment and analysis to this. In 1967, Ron Jones was in his first year teaching at progressive, upper-middle class Cubberley High Schoo, responsible for instructing World History to 10th grade students. He had a dynamic connection with his students who recall him being "one of us". Eager to shake up the political consciousness of his pupils, Jones launched an experiment over the course of two weeks, igniting a firestorm.

To explain the appeal of fascism in Nazi Germany, he created a classroom setting wherein students subjugated personal freedom to the good of the community, following almost without question. Replete with salutes and Gestapo-like informants, the so-called Third Wave soon attracted scores of students throughout Cubberley and neighboring schools, spiraling out of Jones' control. This moving recounting by Jones, school administrators, former students, and many others enthralls with the force of inescapable conclusions, and demonstrates how its theme has only grown in relevance.



State Of Crisis Productions Inc
FULL SYNOPSIS

The Producers


Philip Neel graduated from UCLA in 1973 with a B.A. in Motion Picture/Television production. He started working at the CBS Television Network in various capacities. He eventually landed a position as an editor on the detective series “Remington Steele”. During this time, Neel met Glenn Gordon Caron, who hired him as the Associate Producer on the television series “Moonlighting”, an experience that honed Neel’s producing abilities. Neel has taught advanced editing for the Cinematic Arts Department at USC. He has three Emmy nominations for editing, five A.C.E. nominations, two A.C.E. Eddy awards, one CINE Golden Eagle Award, a Telly Award, as well as one Peabody Award. Neel is a member of American Cinema Editors, the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, the Producers Guild of America and the International Documentary Association.


An honor scholar graduate of NYU’s famed film school, Mr. Jeffery is currently the Producer of the hit series “BONES” for Fox Broadcasting Company. A veteran post producer and post supervisor, some of his other credits include “AMERICAN FAMILY: JOURNEY OF DREAMS”, “WALKER, TEXAS RANGER”, “MILLENNIUM”, “VIP” as well as countless television movies and miniseries. In addition, Mr. Jeffery is an award winning Writer/Producer/Director, most recently having made “THE LAST STOP CAFE”, a short that garnered several prestigious awards on the festival circuit, including four Tellys, three Aurora Awards, and a CINE Golden Eagle. In 2003, he post produced “Tap Heat” for famed Producer/Director Dean Hargrove. Mr. Jeffery is a proud member of the Producers Guild of America, having served as a member of the qualifications committee.

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