sea lions

Building Empathy and Critical Thinking: A Lesson About Animals

by Zoe Weil A few years ago at our Summer Residency for educators at the Institute for Humane Education, teacher and IHE grad Betsy Messenger created a lesson on animal issues that was so effective and powerful, I wanted to share it with you. She gathered our group outside and “borrowed” my dogs, whose only…

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Resources: Ethical Dilemmas

Ethical Dilemmas

Help students think deeply and critically about what it means to be our best selves and about the ethical quandaries between balancing personal desires with kindness toward others by engaging them in an exploration of personal and global ethical scenarios. Recommended for grades 3 through 8. Time: 60 minutes   Common Core Standards for this…

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Resources: Choices Cards

Choices Cards

Bottled or tap water? Fair trade or conventional? Sport hunting or taking photos? Participants consider pairs of related behaviors and products and contemplate which choices do the most good and least harm for people, animals, and the earth. Recommended for grades 5 and up. Time: 10-45 minutes   Common Core Standards for this activity (pdf):…

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Resources: Cast your Vote

Cast Your Vote

Students learn about the “hidden ingredients” in every day products and practice voting their values by “buying” different kinds of items. Recommended for grades 6 and up. Time: 30-45 minutes   Common Core Standards for this activity (pdf): Download Common Core for grades 6-8. Download Common Core for grades 9-12.   Find out how some…

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Reclaiming Billboards

Analyzing Advertising

Students learn to be ad-savvy by exploring the pervasiveness of ads in their lives and by analyzing what ads are trying to sell…and trying to hide. Recommended for grades 5 and up. Time: 45-60 minutes   Common Core Standards for this activity (pdf): Download Common Core for grades 5-8. Download Common Core for grades 9-12….

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Resources: Be a C.R.I.T.I.C.

Be a C.R.I.T.I.C.

Participants learn and use the C.R.I.T.I.C. technique to enable them to bring critical thinking skills to any information they receive, whether from industry, non-profits, government or media. Recommended for grades 6 and up. Time: 30-45 minutes   Common Core Standards for this activity (pdf): Download Common Core for grades 6-8. Download Common Core for grades…

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Resources: the Aliens have landed

The Aliens Have Landed: Exploring Oppression, Rights & Freedoms

Students explore oppression, rights & freedoms by participating in a scenario in which aliens have invaded Earth and humans must plead their case not to be oppressed to a Universal Court. In the extended lesson plan, students also explore and compare different kinds of oppressions related to humans and animals. Recommended for grades 8-11. Time:…

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Alien in the Ethical Universe

Alien in the Ethical Universe

Participants receive a visit from a traveling alien on a fact-finding mission to learn how beings treat other beings on Earth.  Answering the alien’s questions reveals the inconsistencies in how our society encourages us to treat others and encourages students to think critically about our choices. Recommended for grades 5-8. Time: 20-45 minutes   Common…

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Emite Tu Voto

Emite Tu Voto

Los estudiantes aprenderán sobre los “ingredientes ocultos” que se encuentran en los productos que utilizamos diariamente y a mantener su compromiso “comprando” otro tipo de productos. Recomendado para grados 6 y en adelante Duración: 30-45 minutos

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