Students need safe and intentionally created conditions to discuss the social inequalities evident in the news and in their own lives. Utilizing contemporary texts with compelling, humanizing stories about diverse characters helps students wrap their heads around the abstract concept of social justice. Using stories to start the discussion also does the work of drawing attention away from the students in the classroom, so no one feels singled out. This approach helps us to “zoom out” from the individual stories to understand the “big picture” of social inequality. This is an essential skill for your students to learn and will help your students grow into informed and empathetic community members.
About the Presenter
Kia Heise, Ph.D.
Dr. Kia Heise earned her doctorate in Sociology from the University of Minnesota. Before joining Mackin Learning, she taught Sociology courses at the college level in Los Angeles and the Twin Cities for several years. Her approach is informed by thousands of hours learning how to navigate discussions of social inequality with diverse groups of young people.