Teaching about Racism, Violence, Inequity and the Criminal Justice System

  • For Educators
    For Parents, Families, and Caregivers
We Will Not Go Back March Protestors 2014
Thomas Altfather Good / CC BY-SA 2.5

For the past several years, there have been incidents of police officers involved in the deaths of African-American and Latino men. In many of these cases, police officers were not indicted and/or convicted when brought to trial. These cases have brought about a wide range of emotions, conversations, policy proposals, protest and actions. Because this is an important conversation that teachers and parents and family members want to have with young people, below are relevant lesson plans, related curricula and additional anti-bias resources and strategies to help you discuss this topic with your youth in school and at home.

Curriculum Resources on Bias, Race and Injustice

Freddie Gray & Baltimore Unrest: Exploring the Case Using Op-Eds

High School
This lesson provides an opportunity for high school students to discuss the case of Freddie Gray’s death and the protests that took place in Baltimore and elsewhere. In the lesson, students will learn more about the case, read and analyze several op-eds about it and use what they learned to write their own argumentative essays with a specific point of view and evidence to support their positions.

Privilege, Discrimination and Racial Disparities in the Criminal Justice System

High School
This lesson provides an opportunity for students to reflect on the killing of Michael Brown through the lens of race, privilege and power. Students will learn more about unearned privilege, examine the various levels of racial disparities in the criminal justice system and explore the role white privilege plays in the different interactions whites and people of color have with community service providers, such as law enforcement.

Educator and Parent Resources for Discussing Issues of Race and Activism with Young People

Children's Literature with Educator and Parent Discussion Guides and Other Books

March: Book One

Book One of this graphic novel trilogy spans Congressman John Lewis' youth in rural Alabama, his life-changing meeting with Martin Luther King, Jr., the birth of the Nashville Student Movement and their battle to tear down segregation through nonviolent lunch counter sit-ins, building to a stunning climax on the steps of City Hall.