Teaching Anti-Racism Through Children’s Literature To Children Of Immigrants

Luz Vanegas, 2nd Grade, Charlotte East Language Academy

Curriculum Unit (PDF)


“No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.” ”Nelson Mandela”
With this unit, I would like to start reimaging education with racial justice in mind. The current situation of the world crisis and its effects on increasing social inequality and exclusion, and the feeling of threat experienced by the population, determines the need for increased efforts to combat discrimination and racism in all its demonstrations in our classrooms.
This curriculum unit focuses on understanding how literature and social emotional learning lessons can give children the tools to manage and express their feelings since they are the heart of race and equity work. Besides, it is also important to mention that antiracism education starts with students’ awareness of themselves, of others and of how the interactions play out.
Kids, no matter what grade they are in, should learn history through an antiracist lens, not only learning about the role of white supremacy and racism in history, but doing so in a way that empowers them to pursue social justice. The school, like the family, is a basic space for the transmission of democratic values. Therefore, the contents of teaching are essential pillars in the process of transmission and we can actively help being anti racist by creating more of a communal learning environment where we are creating mutual respect.
This unit will be developed in the first semester and students will learn how to interact and connect with others by creating a culture of where they can expand their racial beings as antiracists. In this unit, students will also explore different activities that will help them improve reading and writing skills by understanding literature as a powerful learning instrument of transformation.