Wednesday, January 30, 2013

February's theme: Acceptance

As part of our bully prevention initiative at Woodland, I've been sending out monthly tidbits on how teachers can incorporate little things here at there to aid in this school wide goal.  Here are this months resources:

February Bully Prevention Resources
Accepting how we are all unique and different!
When we accept our personal differences, and the differences of our peers without judgment, there is less pressure to fit in and more confidence in being ourselves! 
This confidence and acceptance is another piece to bully prevention as it teaches our kids that each individual is unique and we need to celebrate those differences and unique qualities.  This learning and practice of acceptance will help students to adapt to situations when they DO have differing opinions, perspectives, viewpoints, appearances, likes, etc. And make them more capable of having positive and impactful interactions with their peers now and in the future.

Language Arts:
·         Balloon Burst Stereotypes:  Kids work as a class and in small groups to discuss the words stereotype, tolerance and fairness.  They will also have a chance to “burst” stereotypes by popping balloons associated with common stereotypes.  Full lesson can be found here:

·         Read Thank You, Mr. Falker by Patricia Polacco to emphasize differences in academic abilities.  Stress the following points:
o   1.Everyone is working on something
o   2. Everyone’s abilities are different and varying
o   3.Everyone will get what they need
o   4.We can all help and encourage each other

History/Social Studies:

February is Black History Month!  You could pick an important African American figure from history for each day of February and focus on their accomplishments and discuss how they were perceived as different and not accepted by much of their community because of the difference in their skin color, but in the end made a huge difference in how people are accepted because of those differences today!

Review the lyrics “Don’t Laugh at Me” by Peter Paul and Mary (depending on the age—some words/terms may need to be modified)
After reading "Don't Laugh at Me," engage students in a discussion of its messages. You might prompt discussion with such questions as:
·         Who are some of the people mentioned in the poem who are feeling pain? Why are they feeling that way?
·         The poem includes the words "I'm fat, I'm thin, I'm short, I'm tall, I'm deaf, I'm blind, hey, aren't we all..." What do those words mean? How might we all be "blind" to some people?
·         Do you think most people can relate to the words of this song? Have you ever felt the way the people mentioned in the song feel?
·         Is it fair to say that tolerance is one of the main themes of this song?
(Adapted from

Visual Technology
View the Pixar short 3 minute film “For the Birds” here (
Kids will get a kick out of it and it’s a great fun way to introduce the topic of acceptance, diversity and friendships during a morning meeting or a transition.

Visual demonstration:  Have a brown egg and a white egg and discuss their physical differences as a class.  Break them in a plate where the kids cannot see and have them guess which yoke came from which color egg.
The takeaway:  The same is for people!  We may have physical differences and unique qualities, but we are all equal and should be treated the same as anyone else!

What a great resource for finding books by theme or topic!
-type in a topic or word in the search and it will show you all the books that have been tagged with that word---you can get as specific as you would like!