Monthly Archives: December 2020

Anti-Racist Teacher Resources: Videos

TheNewYorkTimes. (2015). A Conversation About Growing Up Black | Op-Docs | The New York Times. Retrieved December 10, 2020, from

This short documentary produced by The New York Times provides a close-up look at the daily struggles, fears, threats, and discrimination young black men, including young black boys, continue to face in their everyday lives. This video offers viewers an intimate glimpse into the challenges that these young men have been experiencing, simply because of the way others perceive them because of their skin color. This short documentary is especially powerful for those who are not racial minorities or racially marginalized groups, as many of the challenges, worries, and realities that these young men and boys describe may be completely foreign to those with a different skin color. This short documentary is an excellent resource for social studies teachers to bring into their classroom, in order to provide students who may not be aware of these issues, with firsthand accounts of systemic racism, discrimination, and oppression. Teachers can bring this short video into their classrooms to supplement discussions on systemic racism, racial stereotyping, or racial oppression. Teachers may also use this video to introduce an activity, assignment, or lesson that deals with similar issues either historically or in our present day.

Anti-Racist Lesson Plans/Guides for Social Studies Teachers

BCTF. (2020). Racism in Canada: Secondary Lesson Plans. From

This document is a collection of three lesson plans on the subject of racism in Canada published by the BC Teacher’s Federation, particularly during the First and Second World War. These lesson plans provide clear learning outcomes and objectives for students, and look at different historical events in looking at racism and racial discrimination in Canadian society during this period. These lesson plans do not go into depth about the greater themes of systemic racism, race as a social construct, anti racism versus non racism etc. However, they can nevertheless be beneficial for social studies educators who hope to incorporate some activities and assignments that center around these issues of racism and discrimination in Canada’s recent history.

BCTF. (2018). Show Racism the Red Card – Multicultural and Anti-Racist  Education. From

“Show Racism the Red Card – Multicultural and Anti-Racist Education” is a compilation of  many different lesson plans and activities for both elementary and secondary school students, that are aimed at promoting a multicultural and anti-racist education. The activities and lesson plans are well articulated for educators to know what grades they should be used for, what resources are needed, the time frame etc. These lessons and activities range from short exercises that explore key themes/issues including oppression, discrimination, racism etc, to longer discussions and whole class lessons on these greater issues. While these lesson plans and activities are not specific to certain content objectives, they may be incorporated throughout the course, in order to focus on greater themes of multiculturalism, anti racism, and equity.

Dr. Anh, C. et al. (2020). Anti-Oppression/Anti-Racism Resources for Educators. Queen’s University: Faculty of Education. From

This extensive educator’s guide offers activities, resources, lessons, and literature for elementary, secondary, and even post-secondary educators to use when teaching about anti-racism, anti-oppression, and many other issues of a similar nature. While only a small section of this educator’s guide is fitting for secondary school educators, the resources and activities provided can be very impactful, beneficial, and significant for students in promoting these difficult discussions and conversations. This is not a BC guide, thus the resources are not specific for the BC curriculum. However, BC social studies educators can apply the lessons and resources offered on this guide in a way that would suit the BC curriculum, whilst ensuring that students are discussing, learning about, and partaking in activities and exercises that explore these critical themes and issues in our society.

Voices Into Action. (2014). Fast-Fighting Antisemitism Together. Retrieved December 10, 2020, from

This website provides educators with curriculum-centered resources, materials, lesson-plans, and activities aimed to educate students about the issues of discrimination, social justice, racism, and oppression. Voices Into Action provides teachers with concrete lessons organized by unit, that focus on both historic and contemporary human rights injustices. Not only does this website provide detailed lesson plans, activities, discussions, and materials suitable for social studies teachers, but it is a Canadian resource thus these lessons and materials all focus on these issues in our national context. This website contains both a student and educator portal, making it very convenient for educators to assign certain activities, readings, or discussion questions to students, and use the teacher’s portal to access specific lesson plans that fit the grade they are teaching. BC educators can use the lesson plans, unit outlines, or activities with various grade levels, by catering the wide variety of materials  provided to the subject area, topic, or time period they are teaching. As these materials are not directly connected to the BC curriculum, social studies teachers who use this resource should ensure that they are still meeting the curricular and core competencies outlined in the BC curriculum.

Anti-Racist Teacher Resources: Fictional Literature

Thomas, A. (2017). The Hate You Give. HarperCollins.

Angie Thomas’s novel, The Hate You Give, is a young adult text that follows a 16-year old African-American girl named Starr, who lives a divided life as she grows up in a predominantly black, lower socioeconomic neighborhood, while attending an elite, predominantly white private school. When Starr witnesses her black friend get shot and killed by a white police officer,  she begins to uncover the true oppressive, unjust, systemically racist society she lives in. This novel centers around themes of racial profiling, systemic racism, “blackness”, and racial poverty in America. Aside from being a dynamic novel for young adults, Thomas’s text explores these key social justice themes that are very applicable in our society today.

This novel is  an excellent resource for educators to bring into a classroom, as it can elicit extensive discussions on important social justice themes such as racial profiling, systemic racism, race and identity, racial poverty cycles and more. While this novel would likely be better suited in an English Language Arts classroom (ie. a Literary Studies 10-12, class), social studies educators may choose to bring this fictional novel into their classroom, particularly in a Social Justice 11-12 unit focusing on systemic/institutionalized racism and racial violence. Teachers may choose to bring this resource into their classrooms as there is a movie adaptation of this novel, thus students can read the novel and subsequently watch the film. This novel would be best suited for senior grades, 10-12, as it deals with some mature, difficult content, and requires deeper analysis for students to truly recognize the various issues, themes, conflicts, and social justice factors presented.

Anti-Racist Teacher Resources: Poetry

Angelou, Maya (1983). “Caged Bird.” From Shaker, Why Don’t You Sing?. Penguin Random House LLC. Retrieved from

Maya Angelou’s poem, “Caged Bird” uses an extended metaphor of two birds, one who is “free” and one who is “caged”, to symbolize the different lives, opportunities and experiences  of white and black Americans. Angelou uses imagery, symbolism, and powerful language to present a stark contrast between the experience of the privileged bird who is “free”, and the suffering caged bird who is desperate to experience the same level of freedom. This poem does not directly include language pertaining to racism or racial oppression, thus readers must understand the meaning behind these extended metaphors, and reflect on what the experiences of these two birds with vastly different experiences truly symbolize and represent. As “Caged Bird” does not explicitly touch on issues of race, systemic racism or racial oppression like Tiana Clark’s poem does, teachers should provide students with supplementary information on the poet, and context behind the poem itself. Teachers may wish to incorporate a pre-reading activity or discussion, in order to preface this text and have students thinking about these larger themes and social justice issues. Students in both social studies or ELA classes can use this poem to explore extended metaphors and symbolism to highlight real world issues and conflicts such as racial inequity and systemic racial oppression. By incorporating this poem into a social studies or English Language Arts class, students can analyze how various literary forms, including poetry, can be used to promote anti racism and combat systemic racism, oppression, and discrimination in our society.

Clark, T. (2018). “The Ayes Have It.” From I Can’t Talk About the Trees Without the Blood. University of Pittsburgh Press. Retrieved from  

Tiana Clark’s “The Ayes Have It”, is a powerful poem in which the speaker details their perspective on racism, growing up with a mixed race identity, the history of America’s racist South, and the generational impact that this racist history continues to have. This poem highlights the struggles of mixed race individuals, and the difficulty in separating one’s personal life from what they see in the media when it comes to race relations and systemic racism. The speaker denies the notion that there may be a “post racial America”, by emphasizing the systemic racism that has led to far too many tragedies like the deaths of Trayvon Martin and Emmett Till, so many years apart. Clark’s poem is an excellent resource for social studies or English Language educators to employ in their classrooms, as it uses poetry to bring these critical issues of racial profiling, identity, and systemic racism to light. What makes this poem unique is that it touches on the difficulties individuals with a mixed-race identity face, and how they perceive themselves as opposed to how others perceive them. “The Ayes Have It” would be an excellent literary source to use in the classroom, to compare and contrast the ideas, themes, and message presented in Garnette Cadogan’s essay, “Walking While Black”. Having students synthesize these two texts can allow them to understand that the idea of a “post racial America” is a myth developed by privileged individuals. These texts demonstrate how those who may believe this myth are privileged not to experience the hyper surveillance that black men in particular have experienced, and continue to experience in America, Canada, and many other parts of the globe.