Social Studies

Explore the History of ‘Loving’

The Augusta Films documentary The Loving Story recounts an important and often-overlooked element of the struggle to end racial segregation in the United States. Mildred and Richard Loving, married in 1958, were arrested because he was white and she was part African-American and part Native American. In Virginia, where they lived, their marriage was illegal. Their desire to live together as husband and wife in their home state led to a Supreme Court ruling that declared state laws that prohibited inter-racial marriage unconstitutional. 

The Augusta Films documentary The Loving Story recounts an important and

Poverty and Natural Disasters: Exploring the Connections

In 1989 a magnitude 7.1 earthquake struck San Francisco. Sixty-three people died. This year, a 7.0 earthquake struck Haiti. A month after the disaster the Haitian government estimates that more than 200,000 people died. Why the huge difference? In this lesson students will answer that question as they identify and explore connections between poverty and natural disasters. 

Additional Resources

Different Images of Beauty


Students will:

  • identify different messages about body image coming from or directed at different cultural groups, historical periods, gender and age groups;
  • gain critical awareness about the source of beliefs about body size and shape;
  • identify specific actions they can take to move beyond physical appearance as a guiding force in their social lives;
  • work on an attitude of acceptance toward their own and others’ diverse body shapes and sizes.

Essential Questions: 

  • Where do ideas about body size and shape come from?
  • What problems can result from a narrow definition of the size and shape a body should take?
  • How can we work to combat negative body image in ourselves and in our peers? 

Materials Needed: 

  • chart paper
  • markers
  • printouts of the following images and accompanying captions

There are a variety of resources for children about body image in different contexts. This article addresses differences in body image in a variety of cultures. Images of idealized bodies from different decades can be found here. Common Sense media addresses body image issues specific to young boys. Finally, this website addresses a variety of issues pertaining to diversity of body image.

This is the third lesson of the series, I See You, You See Me: Body Image and Social Justice, designed to help studen

Extension Activity: 

When students go home, encourage them to attend to different representations of beauty in the world around them. These representations are sometimes correlated with ideas about what constitutes a healthy body, and they are sometimes dictated by any number of other cultural forces. Have them pay attention to what they see on media, but also to what their families describe. Give students a chance to report back and note the diversity of responses—body image comes from the world around us and is not at all absolute.

ELL Extension

When students share adjectives for describing beauty, encourage English language learners to develop their descriptive vocabulary. They may use the class chart for reference, and practice writing or speaking sample sentences that incorporate these adjectives. Encourage English language learners to use these adjectives in their daily spoken language so that they become part of their active vocabulary.

Editorial Cartoons: Poverty/Environmental Justice


Activities will help students:

  • analyze the visual composition of an editorial cartoon
  • understand how a cartoon uses satire to make a political statement
  • interpret images and text in an editorial cartoon

This is the fourth lesson in the series "Using Editorial Cartoons to Teach Social Justice."

Editorial Cartoon: Racial Profiling


Activities will help students:

  • understand how a cartoon uses irony to make a political statement
  • interpret visual and written material in an editorial cartoon

This is the second lesson in the series "Using Editorial Cartoons to Teach Social Justice."

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