Pollyanna K-8 Racial Literacy Curriculum

Pollyanna’s Racial Literacy Curriculum for Grades K-8 is designed to help students gain knowledge about race as it has been constructed in the United States, and aims to help students acquire an awareness of their own racial socialization and skills for engaging in productive conversations about race and racism.

Both fiction and nonfiction texts––such as picture books, primary sources, historical articles, current events––and other forms of media are incorporated throughout the curriculum to serve as talking points for classroom dialogue and to widen students’ cultural lens. For younger students, lessons may take place during read-aloud or small group instructional periods, and for older students, lessons may be implemented during elective or advisory periods, and may also support humanities courses. Grade-level goals will continue to increase in complexity, for instance:

  • To encourage kindness, bravery, and empathy when exploring and better understanding the cultural and racial diversity of local and global communities.
  • To develop more inclusive and positive perspective of self, others, and the larger world in regard to race, ethnicity, and culture.
  • To analyze history and other social assertions that fabricate myths of innate racial superiority, in order to dispel myopic, discriminatory perspectives of race.
  • To analyze race as a primary institution of the United States.
  • To critique the biological fallacy of race, while simultaneously unpacking its social truths.

The underlying goal of the curriculum is to build bridges and connections––for all students to recognize similarities among their peers along lines of race, while also celebrating perceived differences. We hope to plant seeds that will encourage and enhance racial literacy, geographical awareness, and cultural competence both in the classroom and throughout one’s life.

Please click on each grade level to access PDFs and download lesson plans. Please click here to view our workshops supporting the Curriculum.