books

Recommended Books

In this document you’ll find recommended books in several categories and on a variety of subjects. We have also curated a series of children’s books for educators and parents to use, and you’ll find links to these compilations at the beginning of this document. You’ll also find books for adults on education, social justice, environmental…

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pink

Looking Beyond “Pinkification” and Other Gender Stereotypes

by Marsha Rakestraw In March 2014, a couple of essays appeared in Slate and New York Magazine, castigating mothers of girls for complaining about the “pinkification” of girl stuff, citing it as an example of girl blaming. Author Yael Kohen wrote, “No symbol of girl culture is more powerful than pink.” There was a significant counter-response…

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Resources: What is Powerful?

What is Powerful?

This icebreaker activity helps students explore power and understand the systems in play that create and perpetuate privilege and oppression. Recommended for grades 5-8. Time: several days of a 45-minute class

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Reclaiming Billboards

In Your Face: Reclaiming Billboards

Billboards are omnipresent in most communities and on many roadways. These in-our-face ads can have a powerful influence on us. Students explore issues surrounding billboards and the values billboard ads promote and design new billboards that help reclaim their visual space and restore value in their communities and culture. Recommended for grades 9 and up….

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Different kinds of Lego people lined up in rows on a grey surface

Where Are the People Like Me?

Students assess examples of  media (catalogs, magazines, books, etc.) to consider who is (and isn’t represented) and to explore the impact of lack of diversity in media and their own rich experiences with diversity. Recommended for grades 4-10. Time: 45-60 minutes

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display of magazines for sale

Magazine Scheme: Are We Here?

Students explore articles, images, and ads in magazines targeted to teen girls to explore messages about women and girls and the effect of those messages on young women and men. (The activity can also be modified to explore appropriate men’s magazines and messages about men and boys.) Recommended for grades 7-12. Time: 2 class periods…

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newspaper racks

Who’s Missing From Mainstream Media? (lesson plans)

by Marsha Rakestraw A few years ago at our graduate student residency, one of the students led an activity in which small groups looked at the prevalence of men, women, and people of color as authors of articles in different sections of the newspaper, such as Style, Sports, Business, and Arts. They found that men…

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Reclaiming Billboards

We Have You Surrounded: Exploring Branding, Marketing & Globalization

We’re surrounded by marketing and advertising telling us what to buy, whom to be, what we need to be happy. Use this series of activities to help students explore issues of branding, marketing, and globalization. Recommended for grades 9 through 12. Time: Several weeks   Common Core Standards for this activity (pdf): Download Common Core…

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woman looking in mirror and brushing hair

What Price Beauty?

This activity encourages students to explore and think critically about the impacts of the ingredients in the personal care products that they use on themselves, other people, animals and the environment, as well as how branding and marketing play into our choices. Recommended for grades 8 and up. Time: A few days to several weeks…

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