Lesson plan

Appreciating Diversity and Differences

In this lesson, students will hear the story *Lovely* and work in small groups to create a book or a symbol of appreciation for others' differences. Students will consider how appreciating differences supports community and relationships.
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Students will be able to articulate how they appreciate diversity and differences by writing a story or creating artwork.

(10 minutes)
Lovely Art Pieces
  • Bring students together into a circle, either seated in chairs or on the floor.
  • Write the word "lovely" on the board.
  • Ask students to participate in a "chalk talk," in which they will silently come up to the board and write words or phrases that connect to the word "lovely." They can also write questions or piggy-back off of others' words and phrases.
  • After the chalk talk activity, ask for a student volunteer to come up and talk about what they notice. Ask, "What words are connected? Are there questions on the board?"
  • Write the following quote on the board: "Big, small, curly, straight, loud, quiet, smooth, wrinkly. A world of differences all add up to the same thing: we are all lovely!"
  • Give students a minute to think about the meaning of this quote. Then, have them share their thoughts with a partner.
  • Have 2–3 pairs share what they discussed with the whole class.
  • Explain to the class that today they will be discussing the word "lovely." They will hear a story named Lovely, which is about appreciating and respecting each other's differences, and ultimately seeing everyone as lovely.
  • Explain that they will then write a book of their own that is similar to Lovely.
(5 minutes)
  • Show the class the book LovelyBy Jess Hong.
  • Ask them to pay attention to the format of the book, and how it portrays all that is lovely. This will help them when it is their turn to write.
  • Read the book to the students, and pause periodically to ask comprehension questions.
(5 minutes)
  • After reading Lovely, ask students some of the following comprehension questions:
    • What happened in the story?
    • Where did diversity come up in the plot?
    • When did the book talk about appreciation for differences?
  • Explain to students, "'Recognizing diversity' means understanding that each individual is unique and recognizing our individual differences like race, culture, language, and abilities."
  • Explain to students that they will work on their own to create a book similar to Lovely.
  • Tell them that their books will be displayed in the school library or in the classroom.
  • Read the instructions of the Lovely Art Pieces worksheet, and model for the class how to move through it. Explain that they can either choose to create a book or put together an art project that symbolizes appreciating diversity and seeing the lovely in diversity. (Show them the example art piece.)
(25 minutes)
  • Dismiss students back to their seats, and distribute the Lovely Art Pieces worksheet.
  • Have them decide whether they want to create a story or art piece, and allow them to begin working.

Enrichment:When completing the Lovely Art Pieces worksheet, students may choose to write a story and create an art piece about appreciating differences to include in their story. They can use art supplies such as paints, markers, or pipe cleaners.

Support:When completing the Lovely Art Pieces worksheet, work with a small group of students to write a story that celebrates diversity.

(5 minutes)
  • Observe students at their seats during the independent working time.
  • Collect projects to review their stories and art pieces, and assess their comprehension of diversity.
(5 minutes)
  • After all students have completed their projects, ask them to join together in a circle on the floor.
  • Place all of the students' stories and art projects in the centre of the circle.
  • Ask students to each choose one story or artwork to look at for a couple minutes.
  • Ask students what they noticed about their classmates' projects.
  • After students have shared, ask them the following questions, one at a time:
    • How can we appreciate each other’s differences in our classroom?
    • How does looking at diversity through the lens of loveliness, just like in the story, support relationships and community?

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