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IWitness Activity Library - USC Shoah Foundation

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K to 12
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This activity library includes over 400 ready-made lessons and activities in various languages that focus on teaching about the Holocaust. These resources are a companion to the main...more
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This activity library includes over 400 ready-made lessons and activities in various languages that focus on teaching about the Holocaust. These resources are a companion to the main IWitness site, < a href="/single.cfm?id=14082">reviewed here. Use the filters to narrow resources by type, language, or subject area. Lessons are also correlated to several different standards, including ISTE and Common Core. After selecting an activity, view a summary and click the download link to access all links for lesson materials such as videos and a PDF teaching guide.

tag(s): civil rights (144), difficult conversations (37), empathy (24), holocaust (37), social and emotional learning (45)

In the Classroom

Include lessons from the IWitness site with your lessons related to the Holocaust and when teaching about prejudice and empathy. Increase comprehension of the complex ideas related to the Holocaust and prejudice using mind maps to organize and clarify information for students using a digital mind mapping tool such as MindMup,reviewed here. MindMup offers various tools that make it easy to build simple mind maps for use with younger students or enhance learning in more complex ways by adding links to documents, videos, and images. Extend learning by asking students to design and produce podcasts using Buzzsprout, reviewed here, to tell the story of the Holocaust and share stories of how to build empathy for others.
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Change Begins at School - Morningside Center for Teaching Social Responsibility

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K to 12
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Morningside Center provides resources for K-12 educators that encourage social responsibility and help develop social and emotional skills. The site was created following 9/11 to help...more
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Morningside Center provides resources for K-12 educators that encourage social responsibility and help develop social and emotional skills. The site was created following 9/11 to help teachers address sensitive issues that arose in the aftermath of the tragedy. Select the Classroom Resources section to find and filter TeachableMoments lessons. Sort by topic area, subject, and grade level or search by keyword. Each lesson includes instructions and background information as well as links to supporting material. The site is constantly updated with lessons relating to current events. Many activities include links to YouTube videos, if your district blocks YouTube; then the videos may not be viewable.

tag(s): bullying (52), climate change (69), conflict resolution (6), disasters (36), diversity (32), elections (75), holidays (122), politics (98), racism (59), religions (57), social and emotional learning (45), women (96)

In the Classroom

Engage students in any of the provided lessons by starting with a simple poll using Updwn, reviewed here. For example, ask students if they are familiar with the topic discussed, have experienced a similar emotion, or display an image on your whiteboard and ask students if they know what it represents. Enhance learning throughout any of the lessons by sharing additional resources using a curation tool such as Padlet, reviewed here. Add links to videos, articles, or online activities related to the lesson's content. As you complete lesson activities, extend learning by asking students to share their understanding by creating digital books using Book Creator, reviewed here, flyers made with Adobe Spark for Education, reviewed here, or infographics created with Canva Infographic Creator, reviewed here.

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Discussing Tragic Events in the News - Morningside Center

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K to 12
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Although tragic and difficult world events are challenging to discuss, it is important to understand that they are on students' minds as they come into the classroom. This article provides...more
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Although tragic and difficult world events are challenging to discuss, it is important to understand that they are on students' minds as they come into the classroom. This article provides specific questions and discussion formats that help support students during difficult times and fosters a sense of community. The five basic questions offer students opportunities to share their feelings and reflect upon ways to address similar problems in the world and their community.

tag(s): differentiation (56), disasters (36), social and emotional learning (45)

In the Classroom

Bookmark this site to use as a resource for fostering productive class conversations as needed when discussing difficult events. Be sure to share this site with parents who are also dealing with students that are dealing with tragic events at home. After allowing time to reflect upon the events and your classroom discussions, some students may need additional time to process the information. Provide an additional outlet using Google Jamboard, reviewed here. Create a Jamboard that allows students to add sticky notes anonymously that share their feelings or solutions to difficult problems. Curate resources for students (and parents) that include age-specific information such as news articles, videos, and background information using a curation tool such as Wakelet, reviewed here. Consider creating a Wakelet for parents and guardians with information to use at home to support students in meaningful ways. Provide students a creative outlet to share their emotions by suggesting they create short videos, flyers, or websites using the free tools found at Adobe Spark for Education, reviewed here. Find more resources to help facilitate difficult conversations on this Special Topics Page.

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Teachers' Guide to Cranky Uncle - John Cook

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6 to 12
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How do you teach students to understand and build resilience against misinformation? Try using this game created by George Mason University scientist, John Cook, that uses cartoon personifications...more
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How do you teach students to understand and build resilience against misinformation? Try using this game created by George Mason University scientist, John Cook, that uses cartoon personifications of climate science denials. The game is available to play on any browser or download the app from the Apple Store or Google Play. By teaching how others use fake experts and cherry-picking information to spread disinformation, this game engages players as they employ critical thinking skills to build points and learn how to separate fact from myth. The Teacher's Guide features all you need to know to understand how to set up the game for your class, the basic premise and information found in the game, and classroom activities that accompany the game's features.

tag(s): DAT device agnostic tool (166), digital citizenship (70), game based learning (155), internet safety (113), media literacy (82), social media (44)

In the Classroom

Add this game to your toolkit of lessons and activities when teaching Internet safety and media literacy skills. The Teachers' Guide already includes many ideas on integrating the game into classroom lessons and includes using technology to enhance and extend learning. Use these ideas as a starting point to build student engagement and help them understand the real-world applications for the information found in the game. For example, use the suggested Padlet, reviewed here, activity to compile quiz questions as suggested in Activity 5. After completing that activity, have students create their own videos, fake social media posts, or news articles that contain misinformation and create quiz questions for their peers to complete. Adobe Spark for Education, reviewed here, is an excellent tool for students to use when creating websites, videos, flyers, and infographics. As a final project, and to extend learning, have students share what they learned with others by producing podcasts using Buzzsprout, reviewed here, or digital books for younger students using Book Creator, reviewed here.

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Rock Your World - Creative Visions

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6 to 12
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This middle school and high school curriculum challenges students to think about challenges faced in their communities and beyond, then develop campaigns to overcome the obstacles found....more
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This middle school and high school curriculum challenges students to think about challenges faced in their communities and beyond, then develop campaigns to overcome the obstacles found. Based upon Common Core Standards, the program includes over 70 lessons that begin engaging students through developing an understanding of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Convention on the Rights of the Child. Lessons don't have to take place in the order offered; select lessons that fit the goals chosen for you and your students.

tag(s): civil rights (144), social and emotional learning (45), women (96)

In the Classroom

Include these free lessons in a variety of ways in your classroom. Use the content to help students understand social causes important to them and how to engage in their cause. This site offers various methods to create social issue campaigns, including music, film, and persuasive writing opportunities. Use this information to differentiate learning opportunities for students with activities that appeal to their interests. For students interested in coding, use Minecraft Education Edition, reviewed here.
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World's Largest Lesson - Project Everyone

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K to 12
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World's Largest Lesson provides resources for educators who teach students about 17 Global Goals created by the leaders of the 193 countries of the United Nations. Visit the Resources...more
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World's Largest Lesson provides resources for educators who teach students about 17 Global Goals created by the leaders of the 193 countries of the United Nations. Visit the Resources portion of the site to browse through the many activities. Narrow your search using the provided filters to locate information by grade level, topic, type of activity, and more. Downloadable lessons include complete directions, printable worksheets, and key questions highlighted during the lesson. The videos are hosted on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, then they may not be viewable.

tag(s): cross cultural understanding (139), earth (178), energy (141), engineering (108), environment (231), inequalities (23), maps (216), STEM (215)

In the Classroom

Discover the many free educational resources found on this site to include with your lessons about global cultures, the environment, health, and technology. Use the activities and lessons found on the World's Largest Lesson to engage students in understanding and processing information related to serious global issues. Have students use a collaborative whiteboard tool such as Jamboard, reviewed here, to brainstorm solutions to problems using the sticky note feature or to create mind maps and flow charts to organize further research. Enhance learning by asking students to create an interactive, choose your own adventure story using StoryLab, reviewed here. Ask students to use information learned from their lessons to create a story that tells what happens if the earth continues on its current course vs. what happens when suggested changes are implemented.
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Resources to Develop a Positive Self-Identity - TeachersFirst

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K to 12
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Encourage your students to develop positive self-identities based on their membership in various groups in society. Help your students to feel confident to express pride and healthy...more
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Encourage your students to develop positive self-identities based on their membership in various groups in society. Help your students to feel confident to express pride and healthy self-esteem about their own self-identity, without devaluing the dignity of those that may be different than they are. The resources shared in this section help teachers to enable students to recognize that people have multiple identities and are members of multiple groups within our society, creating complex and unique individuals.

tag(s): bias (15), difficult conversations (37), identity (21)

In the Classroom

Find resources to educate yourself and your students about various topics related to self-identity. This collection includes lesson plans, blogs, book suggestions, and interactives too. Share these resources with your colleagues and families.

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Resources Related to Difficult Conversations - TeachersFirst

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K to 12
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As teachers, we frequently tackle uncomfortable subjects in the classroom, but polarizing public conversations or events in the news can sometimes make these subjects downright difficult...more
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As teachers, we frequently tackle uncomfortable subjects in the classroom, but polarizing public conversations or events in the news can sometimes make these subjects downright difficult to discuss with students. The resources in this collection will give you ideas on how to start and facilitate tough conversations about topics like inequality, injustice, and politics sensitively while still accomplishing learning goals. You'll also find lessons and activities to encourage respectful conversation, inclusivity, empathy, and understanding.

tag(s): difficult conversations (37), empathy (24), racism (59)

In the Classroom

Explore this collection to use to engage in difficult conversations in your classroom. Learn more about difficult conversations and empathy for others in some of the informational readings.

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Understanding Empathy - TeachersFirst

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K to 12
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Empathy is our desire and ability to understand and share another person's feelings and use that information to guide our actions. It's the foundation of respect and inclusivity and...more
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Empathy is our desire and ability to understand and share another person's feelings and use that information to guide our actions. It's the foundation of respect and inclusivity and is an essential component of relationship building, resolving interpersonal conflicts, and understanding cause and effect. In this collection, we share resources that will help you create lessons and experiences that cultivate empathy in your students and informational websites about this important topic.

tag(s): empathy (24), perspective (11), racism (59)

In the Classroom

Help your students to develop empathy for others. Share these resources with your colleagues and school parents by emailing the page or sharing the link from your school web page or on your school's LMS.

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Resources on Racism and Discrimination - TeachersFirst

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K to 12
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As educators, it's our duty to teach our students to respect people of all races, genders, orientations, and cultures, both in our classroom and in the outside world. Racism, sexism,...more
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As educators, it's our duty to teach our students to respect people of all races, genders, orientations, and cultures, both in our classroom and in the outside world. Racism, sexism, and orientation discrimination can be difficult topics to broach in the classroom but are essential to discuss as students find their voices and form their understanding of the world. In this collection, we share resources about combatting racism, lesson plans about the human cost of discrimination, and additional activities to spark meaningful discussion and encourage students at all grade levels to treat all people with respect.

tag(s): black history (79), empathy (24), racism (59)

In the Classroom

Find resources to educate yourself and your students about various topics related to racism and discrimination. This collection includes lesson plans and interactives too. Share these resources with your colleagues and families.

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Fake News - Real News vs. Fake News - Pace University

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4 to 12
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This helpful page provides information to help users understand how to verify news resources for research purposes. This resource guides the readers through suggested tips on how to...more
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This helpful page provides information to help users understand how to verify news resources for research purposes. This resource guides the readers through suggested tips on how to stay alert and recognize fake news. It also shares suggestions on how to avoid disinformation by identifying the use of techniques such as sensational headlines. Be sure to check out the Breaking News Consumer's Handbook located at the bottom of the website that includes eleven ways to identify and recognized fake news stories and resources.

tag(s): digital citizenship (70), internet safety (113), journalism (65), media literacy (82), news (237)

In the Classroom

Include this article with your other resources for teaching how to navigate online information. Include this website within a learning management system such as ActivelyLearn, reviewed here, to build a complete learning unit that includes articles, videos, and assessments that fully immerse and engage students in the learning activities. Enhance learning throughout the school year using Padlet, reviewed here, to curate and organize online information. For example, create a Padlet that includes a column for each of the four categories of fake news mentioned on this website, then ask students to share examples found during online use. Extend learning by asking students to become the teacher through presentations on how to recognize and avoid fake news. Provide a variety of options for student presentations including a comic creation tool like ToonyTool, reviewed here, Biteable, reviewed here, to create simple video explainers, or use Minecraft Education Edition, reviewed here, and have students create a game to teach the hazards of disinformation.

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5 Powerful lesson ideas to help students find self-identity - Lucie Renard

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5 to 12
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Encourage students to reflect upon and understand their self-identity with five lessons adapted from Katja Schipperheijn's book, Digital Citizen. Lesson activities encourage students...more
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Encourage students to reflect upon and understand their self-identity with five lessons adapted from Katja Schipperheijn's book, Digital Citizen. Lesson activities encourage students to share opinions, consider their interests and expertise, and introduce themselves to others using only 250 characters.

tag(s): character education (64), identity (21), professional development (236)

In the Classroom

Use ideas found in this article to encourage students to reflect upon their self-identity and reflect upon how they want to be viewed by others. The fifth lesson suggests using Bitmoji, reviewed here, to build avatars to reflect self-image. Incorporate this activity with the 250 character response to extend learning and tie together students' physical identity ideas with their concept of what makes them unique. Use Canva Edu, reviewed here, and have students upload their Bitmoji and response to create a flyer that introduces them to others.

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Ten Teacher Recommendations in Facilitating Conversations About Race in the Classroom - H. Richard Milner IV

Grades
5 to 12
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Discussions of race and society in the classroom are difficult for many teachers. This article provides ten specific ideas that encourage, cultivate, and support race with students....more
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Discussions of race and society in the classroom are difficult for many teachers. This article provides ten specific ideas that encourage, cultivate, and support race with students. Although created with middle school and high school students in mind, this article is also adaptable to the elementary level.

tag(s): bias (15), civil rights (144), difficult conversations (37), professional development (236), racism (59)

In the Classroom

Include this article as part of your professional development activities within your grade level or building as a support for understanding best practices on how to address racial issues, bias, or any difficult conversations that arise in a classroom. One way to really focus on this topic is to discuss one of the ten specific ideas each month. As a staff, share situations where the idea worked well or discuss ways to continue building a supportive environment built upon the topic focus. If you use Microsoft products, create a collaborative document using OneNote, reviewed here, to share ideas and participate in online conversations. Google users may want to consider using Google Keep, reviewed here, as a collaborative tool.

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Discovering My Identity Lesson Plan - Tolerance.org

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3 to 7
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This standards-based lesson for upper elementary students provides directions that guide students toward understanding different identity aspects using diverse book characters. Students...more
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This standards-based lesson for upper elementary students provides directions that guide students toward understanding different identity aspects using diverse book characters. Students work toward answering essential questions that identify similarities and differences between themselves and others and explore how stories teach us about identity. This site provides video clips, small group discussion directions, and graphic organizers to use during the lesson.

tag(s): bias (15), character education (64), identity (21), racism (59)

In the Classroom

Include this lesson during character education lessons that teach students about racism, bias, and identity. Use edpuzzle, reviewed here, to enhance students' viewing of the video included with the lesson. Search the YouTube portion on edpuzzle to find the video, then place the discussion questions within appropriate portions of the video. edpuzzle integrates with several learning management systems, including Canvas, reviewed here, making it easy to include your annotated video as part of a larger teaching unit. As students complete their book reviews during the lesson, use FlipGrid, reviewed here, to create video book reviews. Use this FlipGrid topic throughout the year to add additional book reviews for students throughout the school year. Upload the book review graphic organizer to your topic for easy access whenever students are ready to add a new review.
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Design for Change USA - Design for Change

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K to 8
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Design for Change uses a virtual platform to engage students and build social awareness through activities that critically look at themes. Create an account to view your dashboard and...more
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Design for Change uses a virtual platform to engage students and build social awareness through activities that critically look at themes. Create an account to view your dashboard and options found on the site. Content is based upon three themes - Racial Injustice, Educational Equity, and Climate Action and is delivered in a content framework of feel, imagine, do, and share. Lessons begin with an empathy warmup podcast. The following steps engage students in understanding the problem of each theme before developing suggested solutions. Download educator toolkits for all activities found using your account dashboard.

tag(s): character education (64), climate (81), climate change (69), empathy (24), racism (59)

In the Classroom

Bookmark activities and podcasts shared in this site to use when teaching about racial bias, empathy, and climate. Download the educator's toolkit to use as an excellent resource for graphic organizers for students to organize information and plan action steps for multiple different uses. As a culminating activity, engage learners to share their ideas by creating digital books using Book Creator, reviewed here. Have students create books that include images, videos, and written text that share their ideas on steps to take to address social issues.
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Making it Meaningful: Interrupting Biased Comments in the Classroom - Rosalind Wiseman

Grades
K to 12
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How do you address racially insensitive, homophobic, or other biased comments in your classroom? This article shares tips for handling these comments through immediate responses that...more
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How do you address racially insensitive, homophobic, or other biased comments in your classroom? This article shares tips for handling these comments through immediate responses that turn into teachable moments. Whether you only have time for a quick response, or if you have time for a more meaningful lesson, these ideas provide opportunities to turn the comments into moments for reflection and change.

tag(s): bullying (52), character education (64), difficult conversations (37), empathy (24), identity (21), racism (59)

In the Classroom

All classrooms face difficult conversations at some point; bookmark this article to use as inspiration on how to address those moments and help students understand and develop empathy for others. Even if you don't have time for an extended lesson, encourage students to think beyond the moment by creating a Padlet, reviewed here, that curates and shares resources based upon your conversation. For example, one topic discussed in the article is "bonding" teasing and "annoying" teasing. Ask students to share examples of teasing in a Padlet that has columns for each form discussed. Use FlipGrid, reviewed here, as a platform for discussing difficult moments and ask students to share ways to handle biased or insensitive comments.

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Developing Empathy - Tolerance.org

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5 to 9
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Developing Empathy is a middle school lesson plan that teaches students how to build and put empathy into practice. The essential questions focus on students reflecting upon their ability...more
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Developing Empathy is a middle school lesson plan that teaches students how to build and put empathy into practice. The essential questions focus on students reflecting upon their ability to empathize with others and practice using this character trait with fellow students. This lesson includes printable worksheets for students, including a self-evaluation and practice activity cards.

tag(s): bullying (52), character education (64), empathy (24)

In the Classroom

Include this lesson with others as you teach the character trait of empathy and incorporate these ideas into lessons about bullying and bias. As you begin your lesson with the essential questions, use a digital question response site such as Answer Garden, reviewed here, to share student responses. This site offers the opportunity to look at the entire class's responses while still allowing students to provide anonymous thoughts. Take advantage of the suggested extension activities to allow students to use their creativity to share their understanding of empathy in various ways. Some tool suggestions for the extension activities are to create comics using ToonyTool, reviewed here, share videos created with Powtoon, reviewed here, or publish podcasts using Buzzsprout, reviewed here.
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Start Empathy Toolkit - Ashoka

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K to 12
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The Start Empathy Toolkit provides a roadmap and materials for teaching empathy to students in all grades. The 85-page downloadable PDF guide focuses on three steps to learning - Prepare,...more
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The Start Empathy Toolkit provides a roadmap and materials for teaching empathy to students in all grades. The 85-page downloadable PDF guide focuses on three steps to learning - Prepare, Engage, and Reflect & Act. Lessons included in the toolkit have suggested time, directions, appropriate grade levels, and materials needed.

tag(s): emotions (41), racism (59), social and emotional learning (45)

In the Classroom

Include lessons and materials found on this site within your classroom to develop empathy and community. Engage students in your activities by creating word clouds of words that promote empathy and understanding using a word cloud creation tool such as WordClouds, reviewed here. Develop those words even further by using Answer Garden, reviewed here, as an anonymous answer response tool. For example, one activity focuses on Appreciating Those Behind the Scenes. Create an Answer Garden poll for students to share specific ideas on those that help behind the scenes and ways to express appreciation for their work. Extend student learning by asking them to create and share ways for others to demonstrate empathy. Provide options for students to create videos using Adobe Spark Video Creator, reviewed here, design digital books using Book Creator, reviewed here, or write a poem using the Poem Generator, reviewed here.
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SpeakUp! - Martie Gillin

Grades
5 to 12
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SpeakUp! is a non-profit organization that provides resources to support teens in developing positive relationships with adults. Their programs' focus is on encouraging teens to have...more
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SpeakUp! is a non-profit organization that provides resources to support teens in developing positive relationships with adults. Their programs' focus is on encouraging teens to have supportive conversations that help teens deal with any issues. Register for upcoming programs or learn how to become a SpeakUp! school. Be sure to check out the link to the site's resources that includes helpful guides with contact information for help with many different topics, including suicide, drug abuse, bullying, and more.

tag(s): bullying (52), cyberbullying (42), diseases (74), drugs and alcohol (28), eating disorders (8), sexuality (15), social and emotional learning (45), social media (44)

In the Classroom

Share the resource guides with parents and students on your class website to use when facing any of the covered topics. Use Padlet, reviewed here or Wakelet, reviewed here, to curate and share helpful guides for parents and students within one collection. As you and your class discuss problems that face teens, ask students to use Canva Edu, reviewed here, to share what they learn. For example, have students create posters to display in the classroom that include the dangers of drug abuse and include tips for helping someone that displays signs of drug abuse. Ask other students to design and share infographics that include facts and figures discussing cyberbullying, along with suggestions on how to respond to bullies.
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Facing History and Ourselves - Facing History and Ourselves

Grades
6 to 12
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Using history to connect students to choices made in the past, Facing History provides lessons and curated collections that address racism, bigotry, and prejudice. Visit the Educator...more
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Using history to connect students to choices made in the past, Facing History provides lessons and curated collections that address racism, bigotry, and prejudice. Visit the Educator Resources to browse through videos, lessons, and complete teaching units. Within the same area, explore the many examples and instructions for teaching strategies, including ideas such as character charts and cafe conversations. Learn more at the Professional Development area of Facing History through classroom videos and free one-hour webinars. Educators who complete a workshop, seminar, or course are eligible to use the site's free lending library.

tag(s): bullying (52), civil rights (144), democracy (15), holocaust (37), immigrants (24), immigration (55), journalism (65), martin luther king (32), racism (59), religions (57)

In the Classroom

Discover the many free resources found on this site to include with your teaching units. If you find that some of the reading material is useful, but is above the reading level of your students, use a summarizing tool such as SummarizeThis reviewed here, to break down large portions of text into manageable content. Include activities from this site as part of a larger unit using a learning management system such as Crio, reviewed here. Use Crio to build an interactive learning experience that includes videos, reading activities, quizzes, and images. Extend student learning by asking them to become the creators through sharing their knowledge with others. Provide options for students to create audio podcasts with Synth, reviewed here, make explainer videos using Adobe Spark Video Creator, reviewed here, or use Google My Maps, reviewed here, to take viewers on a virtual journey through map locations.
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