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Your students can save their work with Student Interactives.

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HomeClassroom ResourcesLesson Plans

Lesson Plan

Breaking Barriers, Building Bridges: Critical Discussion of Social Issues

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Breaking Barriers, Building Bridges: Critical Discussion of Social Issues

Grades 6 – 8
Lesson Plan Type Standard Lesson
Estimated Time Six 45-minute sessions, plus additional time for students to read a book outside of class
Lesson Author

Joy F. Moss

Joy F. Moss

Rochester, New York


National Council of Teachers of English


Materials and Technology

Student Interactives





  • Through My Eyes by Ruby Bridges (NY: Scholastic Press, 1999)
  • The Story of Ruby Bridges by Robert Coles; illus. by George Ford (NY: Scholastic, 1995)
  • The Other Side by Jacqueline Woodson; illus. by E.B.Lewis (NY: G.P.Putnamís Sons, 2001)
  • The Royal Bee by Frances Park and Ginger Park; illus. by Christopher Zhong-Yuan Zhang (Honesdale, PA: Boyds Mills Press, 2000)
  • Virgie Goes to School with Us Boys by Elizabeth Fitzgerald Howard; illus. by E.B. Lewis (NY: Simon & Schuster, 2000)
  • Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli (NY: Harper/Trophy, 1990)
  • Knots in My Yo-yo String: The Autobiography of a Kid by Jerry Spinelli (NY: Knopf, 1998)
  • Response Journals

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Venn Diagram

Grades   K – 12  |  Student Interactive  |  Organizing & Summarizing

Venn Diagram

This interactive tool allows students to create Venn diagrams that contain two or three overlapping circles, enabling them to organize their information logically.


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  • Obtain copies of all necessary picture books and become familiar with them in preparation for reading aloud and discussion.
  • Obtain a class set of Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli.
  • Familiarize students with to expectations for an opportunities of Response Journals. †Consult ReadWriteThink resources such as Exchanging Ideas by Sharing Journals: Interactive Response in the Classroom or Demonstrating Comprehension Through Journal Writing for ideas on getting students started with response journals.
  • If the students are not familiar with literary terms such as viewpoint, setting, and metaphor, specific preparation will be necessary.

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