Teaching Diversity Using Anti-Bias Framework

Posted by Big Universe on Aug 29, 2014 3:34:12 AM

Diversity, social justice, and cultural sensitivity & awareness are huge issues right now in the news, in the kidlit publishing world, and in the lives of our students. We'd all like to do more in the classroom to help our students think critically about these important issues, but it can be hard to know where to start. Luckily, many people are thinking about how to help educators tackle diversity in the classroom. Teaching Tolerance, a project of the Southern Poverty Law Center, has taken a huge leap forward in this arena by creating an Anti-bias Framework, essentially a k-12 Common Core for teaching students about social justice issues.

"The Anti-bias Framework (ABF) is a set of anchor standards and age-appropriate learning outcomes divided into four domains—identity, diversity, justice and action (IDJA). The standards provide a common language and organizational structure: Teachers can use them to guide curriculum development, and administrators can use them to make schools more just, equitable and safe. The ABF is leveled for every stage of K-12 education and includes school-based scenarios to show what anti-bias attitudes and behavior may look like in the classroom."

One Example from the standards:

Students will express pride, confidence and healthy self-esteem without denying the value and dignity of other people.

At the K-2 level, the learning outcome looks like this:
I can feel good about myself without being mean or making other people feel bad.

At the 3-5 level, students can understand:
I can feel good about my identity without making someone else feel badly about who they are.

The middle school outcome expands on this concept:
I feel good about my many identities and know they don’t make me better than people with other identities.

By senior year, students can understand:
I express pride and confidence in my identity without perceiving or treating anyone else as inferior.

You can view the full list of standards here.


Try the ABF Using These Books About Multiculturalism:

How are we the same and different?
Kids' Book Publisher: Crabtree Publishing Company

How are we the same and different?

by Bobbie Kalman
ISBN: 9780778790433
Children often feel that they need to be the same as everyone else. That is the main reason for unhappiness. Do we see our differences as reasons for judgment and fighting? How can we view the different ways of others as things to enjoy, rather than criticize? This book encourages children to honor their own uniqueness and that of others through new ideas and positive actions.


Thirty-Three Multicultural Tales To Tell
Kids' Book Publisher: August House

Thirty-Three Multicultural Tales To Tell

by Pleasant DeSpain
ISBN: 9780874832662

When a story shares a universal message, it finds its way into that pantheon of tales that is shared with many diverse cultures. These classic 33 tales, collected from Brazil, China, Korea, Russia, Tibet, Africa, from America’s native peoples, and other lands, are chosen for their timeless shared values.


We Share One World
Kids' Book Publisher: Illumination Arts Publishing

We Share One World

by Jane E. Hoffelt (author), Marty Husted (illustrator)
ISBN: 9780970190789

Children are never too young to begin exploring the many different cultures that make up our beautiful world. Whether we awaken to the wind blowing from the desert, the spray from an ocean wave, or snowflakes dusting the trees, we all share this truly magnificent planet.


Kids Around the World
Kids' Book Publisher: Teacher Created Materials

Kids Around the World

by Dona Herweck Rice
ISBN: 9781433335990

This book gives kids a chance to meet other kids from different cultures around the world. Reads at a level of 1.9 and has a word count of 294.


One Land, Many Cultures
Kids' Book Publisher: Rourke Publishing

One Land, Many Cultures

by Maureen Picard Robins
ISBN: 9781618104014

This title addresses how America Is a melting pot filled with people from all over the world. Learning about their native language, the foods they eat, and their customs are just some of the issues addressed in this book. Maps that show the different parts of the world where their ancestors came from are an added feature.


Or These Books About Specific Cultural Groups:

Rourke's Native American History and Culture Encyclopedia, Volume 1
Kids' Book Publisher: Rourke Publishing

Rourke's Native American History and Culture Encyclopedia

ISBN: 9781604727074

Volumes 1--10



Modern Middle East
Kids' Book Publisher: Teacher Created Materials

Modern Middle East

by Blane Conklin
ISBN: 9780743906746

The Middle East is a place of conflict based on the controversial nation of Israel, religious extremism, and the Middle Eastern oil supply. The Middle East produces 65% of the world’s oil. Oil has been responsible for many interactions between industrialized countries and the Middle East. Many times, those interactions have led to conflict. Its history and culture provide insight and understanding to world events taking place there.


Kids' Book Publisher: Rourke Publishing


by Michael Burgan
ISBN: 9781604723496

Provides the most current information on the people, culture, and conflicts of Afghanistan. Maps, photographs, and other text features help to support understanding.


What Will You Be, Sara Mee?
Kids' Book Publisher: Charlesbridge

What Will You Be, Sara Mee?

by Anne Sibley O'brien Kate Aver Avraham (author), Ann Sibley O'Brien (illustrator)

ISBN: 9781580892117

Will she be an artist? A cook? A writer?

Sara Mee is turning one, and her family and friends gather for her tol, or first-birthday celebration. Food and presents abound, but most exciting of all is the traditional Korean prophecy game, called the toljabee, which predicts what Sara Mee will be when she grows up.

A book for all cultures, What Will You Be, Sara Mee? celebrates siblings, community, and the blending of traditions.

This book is good for your brain because:

Multicultural, World History, Korean Traditions & Customs


Tito, the Firefighter / Tito, el bombero
Kids' Book Publisher: Raven Tree Press

Tito, the Firefighter / Tito, el bombero

by Tim Hoppey (author), Kimberly Hoffman (illustrator)
ISBN: 9781621671985

This bilingual (English/Spanish) text has Spanish sprinkled in and, as each word is introduced, it is used from there through to the end of the book. There is also a vocabulary page at the end of the book.

Richie, a New York City firefighter or bombero, only speaks Inglés, but he answers all calls for help. In any language, a good deed is still a good deed. When Tito grows up, he wants to be a bombero. He speaks both Inglés and Español. But he never dreamed his bilingual skill might actually help Richie and the other bomberos save the day!


Topics: Classroom Ideas, Differentiation, Reading Lists

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