High School Curriculum
Awareness is the foundation of empathy. For students to achieve a greater sense of empathy, they must first develop an awareness and appreciation of differences. The Changing Perspectives curriculum aims to reduce bullying and social isolation in schools by teaching about differences and supporting an educator’s work to build inclusive communities within their classrooms. The program’s goal is to help each child recognize his or her uniqueness and challenges and, in doing so, promote a deeper understanding of, respect for and acceptance of all people.
The High School Disability Awareness Curriculum is designed for teacher customization. Using an online platform, educators can easily access a variety of materials (e.g. lesson plans, book lists, video clips, etc) and then select which materials are going to be most relevant and meaningful to their students. The focus of the Changing Perspectives program is to engage students in hands-on learning to build greater awareness of differences and inspire empathy. The curriculum consists of two parts.
1. Awareness – This section of the curriculum is divided into 12 different modules. Each module includes lessons that are no more than 30 minutes in length. In addition to the modules, the Awareness section of the program also includes book lists and a series of fifteen minute activities to spark discussions around disability awareness.
2. Call To Action – During the Call To Action section of the curriculum, students are encouraged to engage in some sort of project to bring about social change and inclusion in their schools and/or communities. Changing Perspectives offers a variety of resources to help teachers facilitate the call to action with their students.
A key component to the Changing Perspectives Disability Awareness Curriculum is the coaching that is provided to all partner schools. The purpose of the coaching is to assist teachers, guidance counselors, and other adults facilitating the program to navigate and implement the program in a way that is most meaningful and relevant for their students.