On Wednesday, January 6, 2021, a pro-Trump mob attacked the U.S. Capitol. Teachers around the country are thinking deeply about how to talk with students about this event and its aftermath. While we are still reeling from the initial shock of these events, the disruption is far from over. If 2020 showed us anything, it’s that we should be prepared for the unprecedented. Looking ahead, we will need to help our students process this day and what it means for the future of our country.
Our team has put together resources and recommendations for building resilient communities that create space for students to process the realities of our world and gives them the skills to navigate in it.
Resources for Talking about Difficult Current Events
- BetterLesson Resources
- How Can Educators Create a Learning Space for Difficult Subjects?
- I Wish My Teacher Knew
- Having Conversations about Challenging and Controversial Topics
- Difficult Conversations
- Question Cubes Conversation Starters
- Circle Up: Community Conversations
- Replacing Fear with Empowerment Through Song
- Ed Elements: Resources for School Communities in Times of Crisis
- Teaching Tolerance: When Bad Things Are Happening
- Common Sense Media: Explaining the News to Our Kids
- High school English teacher Tricia Ebarvia: Leaning into Difficult Topics
- Book Look Where We Live by Scot Ritchie [Source: Katie Norton]
Resources for Teaching Media Literacy
- Common Sense Media: News and Media Literacy
- AllSides Media Bias Chart
- BetterLesson Strategies:
Resources for Understanding the Events of January 6, 2021
- Michigan State University teacher educator Dr. Alyssa Hadley Dunn: Resources for Teachers on the Days After the Attack on the U.S. Capitol
- Facing History and Ourselves: Responding to the Insurrection at the U.S. Capitol
- Newsela: Pro-Trump mob storms U.S. Capitol, tries to overturn election
- History.com: Checks and Balances
- Interactive Constitution: The 25th Amendment
- Resilient Educator: Lesson Plans that Help Students Learn About Democracy
- Facing History and Ourselves: Lesson Plan-Defining Democracy
These strategies are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to developing a resilient, responsive culture in which students can discuss difficult subjects. If you're looking to dive deeper, read BetterLesson coach Lindsay Lyons' recent blog, How Can Educators Create a Learning Space for Difficult Subjects?