Teaching Young Children About Bias, Diversity, and Social Justice

We've somehow decided that little kids can't understand these complex topics, or we want to delay exposing them to injustices as long as possible (even though not all children have the luxury of being shielded from injustice).

However, young children have a keen awareness of and passion for fairness. They demand right over wrong, just over unjust. And they notice differences without apology or discomfort.

Racial identity and attitudes begin to develop in children at a young age. Two- and three-year-olds become aware of the differences between boys and girls, may begin noticing obvious physical disabilities, become curious about skin color and hair color/texture, and may also be aware of ethnic identity.

5 Elementary Strategies

1. Use children's literature: There's a wealth of children's books (check out here: that can be read aloud and independently to approach the topic of bias, diversity, and social justice.

2. Use the news media: Find topics and news stories that bring forth these themes and discuss them in the classroom -- like the nine-year-old boy who was banned from bringing his My Little Pony backpack to school because it was the source of bullying.

3. Teach anti-bias lessons: Social and emotional skill development lessons are the foundation, and then teachers can move to lessons on identity, differences, bias, and how bias and bullying can be addressed individually and institutionally.

4. Give familiar examples.
Take advantage of children's interest in books, TV shows, toys, and video games, and use them as opportunities to explore diversity, bias, and social justice.

5. Explore solutions: Re-think the concept of "helping others" to include discussions about the inequities that contribute to the problem and consider actions that can address it. For example, while it's useful to provide food to homeless people, we want to deepen the conversation to convey a social justice perspective and a wider lens with children. Therefore, discuss the stigma and stereotypes of homeless people, learn about unfair housing policies, and reflect on solutions that will reverse the problem in a lasting way and encourage students to take action.

Should We All Be Raising Gender-Neutral Kids?

After the birth of my daughter, FaceTime conversations with my mother or my mother-in-law usually consist of a lot of cooing. “How’s my little princess doing today?” one of them will ask my five-month-old. “She looks like such a beautiful doll today,” the other will say. After ending a recent call, my husband came up to me and asked if we could please tell the grandmothers to stop referring to our daughter as a princess or a doll. “All dolls and princesses have to do is sit and look pretty,” he said. “Is that the kind of message you want her to grow up with?”

4 Things Worse Than Not Learning To Read In Kindergarten

The year Sam started kindergarten, he turned 6 in October. He was one of the oldest children in his class, and he didn’t know how to read. When he started first grade he was almost 7, and he still didn’t know how to read. Fortunately for Sam, he entered first grade in 1999. And his teachers, Mrs. Gantt and Mrs. Floyd, didn’t panic if a child didn’t learn to read in kindergarten. In fact, they expected that most children would learn to read in first grade. (They also supported and encouraged children who learned to read easily in kindergarten, like Sam’s brother Ben.)

Why parents should encourage their kids to read ‘Harry Potter and the Cursed Child,’ according to a top psychologist

Apart from the facts that the “Harry Potter” series has reached more people than any other book series in history and inspired an entire generation to read, Adam Grant, a professor of management at Wharton and author of “Originals,” tells Business Insider that J.K. Rowling is perhaps the most influential person alive because of what her books teach kids: originality and morality.

Mom’s viral message gets real about struggles of parenthood

Storm-Manea Ellyatt is calling bull on the facade of parenthood displayed on social media. Instead of posting a highlight reel of her life, she’s getting real about the daily struggles she faces as a mother — and she invites everyone to join her.

“All those cute bonds ads, miniature Nike shoes, adorable baby shower gifts, baby spam on Instagram, squad dates with your mum posse and those god damn laceylaners lied to me,” she wrote on Thursday, listing her failed expectations about parenting based on how it’s conveyed by ads, TV and online.

“Not once did I see an ad with a mum locked in her cupboard crying in her leaked stained pjs from 3 days ago, covered in sweat and vomit, praying to every god imaginable for the strength and patience to go back to the s**tshow that is now their life,” she wrote. “The once calm, poised, patient goddess, who could sling cocktials, swear with sailors and dance uninhibited until tomorrow afternoon, can bearly hold a conversation, hold her eyes open or the tears back from this new found ‘bliss.’”

10 Key Things You Should Not Do In Front Of Your Children

We know there are many habits and routines that we don’t want our children to pick up but yet we are not setting good life model or example to them. You may be thinking and saying that you do not want your child to smoke, to munch on titbits, to curse and swear because you know it totally uncool, yet our actions tell the opposite. What you did not know is that, these children learn from watching what their parents do. So always remember, your kids are always watching you.