Race and Culture for GR K-3

I Am BIG

Author: Itah Sadu

Illustrator: Marley Berot

In the middle of the ice, a young Black hockey player finds joy in his talent and confidence in the cheers of his family, his coach, and the other players. Their support gives him the power to face down those who see him as a threat and to focus on the thrill of the game.

Young people of colour who have experienced racism on and off the ice will see themselves in these pages. The beauty of hockey is celebrated here, as is the excellence of the young Black boy who continues to play the sport he loves despite the danger that the racism of others can put him in. As well as his family and coach, he looks to Black hockey legends like P.K. Subban and Joel Ward for inspiration.

Lesson Plan

Activity Booklet

I Color Myself Different

Author: Colin Kaepernick

Illustrator: Eric Wilkerson

An inspiring story of identity and self-esteem from celebrated athlete and activist Colin Kaepernick.

When Colin Kaepernick was five years old, he was given a simple school assignment: draw a picture of yourself and your family. What young Colin does next with his brown crayon changes his whole world and worldview, providing a valuable lesson on embracing and celebrating his Black identity through the power of radical self-love and knowing your inherent worth.

I Color Myself Differentis a joyful ode to Black and Brown lives based on real events in young Colin’s life that is perfect for every reader’s bookshelf. It’s a story of self-discovery, staying true to one’s self, and advocating for change… even when you’re very little!

Lesson Plan

Activity Booklet

My Name Is Saajin Singh

My Name Is Saajin Singh

Author: Kuljinder Kaur Brar

Illustrator: Samrath Kaur

A debut picture book that explores the importance of pronouncing names properly and celebrates cultural identity.

Saajin loves his name—he loves it so much that he sees it spelled out in the world around him in his snacks, in the sky and sometimes he even sings it aloud. On his first day of school, Saajin is excited to meet his new classmates, but things take a turn when the teacher mispronounces his name as Say-jin and he is not sure how—or if he should—correct her. After trying to live with the different version of his name for a while and some thoughtful conversations with his family about the meaning behind it, Saajin realizes the importance of reclaiming his name and embracing his identity. This empowering story, accompanied by energetic and vibrant art by Samrath Kaur, will resonate with any reader who has ever felt misunderstood.

Lesson Plan

Activity Booklet

Race and Culture Activity

Mirror Activity

Race and Culture Resources

Character Role Playing Cards
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Anti Bullying Activities
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Teaching about acceptance (replace acceptance for tolerance)
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Mental Health/Belonging/”You are not alone”
A variation of this activity would be for students to anonymously write down the sentence, “if you really knew me…” and then finished it with something they are struggling with. Teacher collects all slips and reads aloud to debrief responses. Students are able to learn about and/or relate to some of the things other students are going through creating a sense of community within the classroom.
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