“Claim Your Name”: PreK – Grade 1 Name Writing Lesson

This lesson plan is for students in PreK, Grade K, and Grade 1. The lesson is centered around the idea of “Claim Your Name” to empower students! To help students claim their names, teachers will show them an example using Alma and How She Got Her Name, conduct a community circle to practice name pronunciation, and end with a name writing activity. I hope that educators and parents find this free resource helpful in our journey to build up our students and community!

Move Beyond “Chrysanthemum”: Diverse Books About Names

As teachers, librarians, or parents, we need to make space to empower students to claim their name. I have seen most people go about this using the book “Chrysanthemum” by Kevin Henkes. While I think this book is lovely, I also know that diverse books about name stories empower students, especially our BIPOC students, more. Therefore, below are 6 diverse picture books about names. Each of these books will act as a mirror or window for our students, which increases their cultivation of cultural empowerment and cross-cultural empathy. Start the school year strong by using these books to build a welcoming environment for every name!

10 Diverse Picture Books for the First Day of School

Make sure to kick off the year right with a diverse book! I have listed 10 Diverse Picture Books for the First Day of School. Each book is perfect for the first day of school and features one or more Black Indigenous Characters of Color! By reading a diverse book on the first day, you are helping your student or child see that diversity and inclusion are core values at schools and sets the tone for the rest of the year.

Back-to-School with Colorful Pages: Diverse Books About PreK-12 School

This year is probably the most important year to have youth read books about school. We can utilize diverse books about school to cultivate more positive feelings about school in the wake of anxiety about this year and grief about last year. Use one of these Diverse Books about PreK-12 School to do that! In this list, there are 10 Picture Books, 9 Early Chapter/Middle Grade Books, and 7 Young Adult Books.

Anti-Racist Books for Middle and High School Students

It is incredibly important to teach race, racism, and anti-racism within students at all ages. I am hoping that you are able gather some resources from this Anti-Racist Books for Middle and High School Students post. Every book on this list is written by an author of color because I feel we, as Black Indigenous, People of Color, need to be the ones to tell these stories since we are the ones that have experienced the racism discussed within them. I have listed 18 books for middle school and high school students: 5 diverse books about race and identity; 8 books about racism, prejudice, and anti-racism in a modern context; and 5 books about racism, prejudice, and anti-racism in a historical context.

Anti-Racist Books for Elementary Students: A Diverse Book List

It is incredibly important that we talk about race, racism, and anti-racism with our kiddos starting at a young age. I have listed 16 books altogether: 4 diverse books about race; 5 books about racism, prejudice, and anti-racism in a modern context; and 7 books about racism, prejudice, and anti-racism in a historical context. Every book on this list is written by an author of color because I feel we, as Black Indigenous, People of Color, need to be the ones to tell these stories since we are the ones that have experienced the racism discussed within them. Hopefully our Anti-Racist Book List for Elementary Students can help inspire you to bring these conversations to your classroom, home, and/or library!

Black Heroes in History: Grades K-5 Learning Activities

In this lesson, students will start to learn more about Black History through researching Black Heroes in History. Depending on the grade level and setting, students will participate in research through an adult read aloud, YouTube video, and/or an article. Then, they will be asked to complete a worksheet where they will write about the facts they learned about the Black Heroes in History. This is a great lesson to START to talk about Black History and introduce students to some key Black Heroes. You can also do the lesson multiple times with different Black Heroes in History. But, please make sure the conversations do not just stop here! There are many important heroes, events, and concepts in Black History that need to be taught year-round.

#BlackLivesMatter: K-8 Distance Learning Activities for Justice for George Floyd

In these Distance Learning Activities, students and you will learn about and process: Black Lives Matter, racial injustice, and the murder of George Floyd. To do this, you will use discussions and videos or read alouds. Then, students will get the chance to take action and stand up for Black Lives Matter and George Floyd by picking a Black Lives Matter Project to do. There are four choices for them to pick from including: art, writing, and letter writing.