In this excerpt from his memoir, Rodriguez provides a stirring recollection from his adolescence: the first time he experienced racism as a result of being an immigrant in America. As he says, the experience "stays with [him] like a foul odor."
In this poem, the speaker sees a man carrying his son across the street and is struck by the tenderness the man displays for the child. The speaker realizes that humanity must cloak itself in this same caring nature.
Maleeka gets made fun of at school about her clothes, her grades, even the color of her skin. In this chapter, she talks about getting teased on a school trip and how even her friend Char was ashamed to be seen with her because of her clothes.
Maleeka gets made fun of at school about her clothes, her grades, even the color of her skin. In this chapter, one of her teachers, with white blotches on her face, shows how she's been able to accept the skin she's in.
This poem's speaker describes being bullied and feeling depressed and skipping school to avoid the harassment. Spiraling downhill emotionally, the speaker ultimately comes to accept and appreciate his/her unique identities.
Felipe Morales' telling account of an encounter with a blind woman on the streets of Washington, D.C. was recorded for This I Believe. The NPR project features brief personal essays in which people from diverse backgrounds discuss how their values affect their daily lives.
Following a presidential debate in 2012, Ann Coulter referred to President Barack Obama as a "retard" in one of her tweets. Stephens, a 30-year-old man with Down syndrome wrote this open letter to Coulter in response to her hurtful and uninformed comments.
To cover is to downplay aspects of our identity that make us different from mainstream society. Kenji Yoshino argues that, although we live in an age where the law prohibits many forms of discrimination, people still face pressure to hide who they are.
In this book excerpt Mattie Stepanek describes what it is like living with a rare neuromuscular disease. Defying many developmental odds, Mattie recounts highs and lows as he travels toward his tenth birthday, living on what he terms “the edge.”
This story follows a girl who befriends the first African American to attend High Point Central High School, as a result of desegregation. What begins as an unintended and awkward experience in the cafeteria, becomes a strong and admirable friendship.
“Ava is an ambitious teenager who owes much of her inner strength to a dance studio in South L.A. Founder Lula Washington and her daughter Tamica are professional dancers — and they are role models as well as teachers. At their dance school, African American children learn to respect themselves, their bodies, and their cultural traditions. The young dancers also defy stereotypes by mastering ballet. The dance program cultivates self-discipline and mutual support that enables girls like Ava to flourish even when their families are facing hard times.”
Students predict the meanings of vocabulary words before reading and confirm the accuracy of their predictions during and after reading. Students identify context clues from the text and revise their definitions accordingly.
This contextual redefinition strategy encourages students to use the structure and context of words to predict their meanings. Students arrive at the definition through exposure to increasingly rich clues.
A tableau is a representation of a scene or picture by people posing silently without moving. In a vocabulary tableau, a group of students use their bodies to create a frozen picture of a vocabulary word.
In reading against the grain students analyze the dominant reading of a text and engage in alternative or "resistant" readings. Resistant readings scrutinize the beliefs and attitudes that typically go unexamined in a text, drawing attention to the gaps, silences and contradictions.
Shared reading combines aspects of guided reading and read-aloud strategies. During shared reading, a teacher or proficient student reads the text aloud, pausing at pre-selected moments to discuss content and analyze the text. This strategy facilitates close reading of a complex text in small or whole group settings.
This strategy exposes students to multiple short pieces of a text before they read it in its entirety. Students read selected quotes out of context and comment on both the selection and the comments of other students. The activity ends with students reflecting on their reactions to and predictions about the text.
Readers must refer back to the central text to answer text-dependent questions and provide evidence from the reading to support their answers. Students provide accurate, relevant and complete evidence. To do this well, students will often need to re-read the text several times. This approach privileges the text over prior knowledge, personal experience and pre-reading activities.
Thinking notes are text annotations (highlights, underlines or symbols made on the text or in the margins) that document student thinking during reading. Depending on how you structure the task, these notes can indicate agreement, objection, confusion or other relevant reactions to the text.
A guide to help students interpret, analyze and evaluate information encountered in a variety of media formats. Use this guide with the spoken and performed texts included in the Perspectives anthology.
A strategy to introduce the anti-bias framework into group discussion and textual analysis. Students respond to and pose questions from the four anti-bias domains: identity, diversity, justice and action.
A strategy for organizing medium- to large-group discussions. Students are separated into an inner and outer circle. In the inner circle, or fishbowl, students have a text-based discussion; students in the outer circle listen to the discussion and take notes.
A discussion strategy that asks students to infer how a particular author or character from a text would respond to questions and scenarios. Students must defend their conclusions using evidence from the text.
Select the parts of your Learning Plan you'd like to print. If your Tasks or Strategies have PDF handouts, they'll need to be printed separately. These are listed on the left side of each Task or Strategy page.