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Bringing Social Justice to Your Classroom

This curriculum is a collection of lesson ideas and resources designed to help students discover and analyze the long history of systemic oppression that has impacted marginalized people for centuries. It is not only the study of history; embedded in this curriculum are opportunities for students to envision and work toward contributing to an equitable and just society. Students learn that they have an obligation to themselves and their community to identify, name, and destabilize injustices. This social justice curriculum inspires students to be upstanders and provides them with the analytical and practical tools to lead and serve.

Lesson Plan

Identity and Community

Students question how globalization has impacted how they view and present themselves. They also explore moral obligation and how they treat people with social identities different from their own.

Revolutionary Thoughts

Students question how ideals of liberty and justice informed the creation of the U.S. constitution. They also explore how those same ideals excluded the experiences of marginalized people.

Voting Rights

Students conduct a review of voting rights laws and constitutional amendments. They also explore voter suppression and its impact on marginalized communities.

Immigration Rights

Students explain why and how people immigrate to the U.S. They conduct a review of immigration laws throughout U.S. history, and they explore how human rights are affected by immigration restrictions.

Racial Equality

Students unpack the history of systemic racism in the U.S. by analyzing racial caste systems that existed during slavery and have manifested in the criminal justice system.

LGBTQ+ Equality

Students explore the criminalization of the LGBTQ+ community while conducting a review of gender and sexuality laws throughout U.S. history. They also study the strategic and organic activism that sustained the LGBTQ+ Rights Movement.

Social Action

Students work to build coalitions with each other and design action projects that aim to dismantle social injustices that they are interested in exploring.

Social Justice 101 was created, developed, and piloted by veteran educator, Gerald Dessus, M.Ed in 2016.


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Interested in implementing this professional development and co-teaching course in your classroom, school, or district? Reach out to us!