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BIG IDEA - Have Respect
Teaching with Clifford's Big Idea: Have Respect

Children learn respect and acceptance of others by observation and experience. Opportunities to understand that diversity makes people special and unique can help children appreciate individual differences early in life.

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This lesson's focus is on teaching children the value of respect through reading, language, and activities that share the uniqueness of diversity.

Teach: Now That's Respect!
Objective: The following activity nurtures essential social and emotional skills, language and literacy skills and tolerance and diversity skills

Introduce the word "respect" to children. Say it, spell it, write it, define it, and use it in oral language. Share common ways to show an elder, teacher, parent, or caregiver respect. Brainstorm ways to show friends respect like including everyone in playtime games, and sharing materials at school. Help children express how they would feel if they were ignored at playtime, or not invited to a birthday party because of their skin color, size, language, or religion. Discuss why it is important to give others respect at home and school. Read Clifford the Big Red Dog by Norman Bridwell (Scholastic). Encourage children to recall story details. Be sure to point out how Emily Elizabeth unconditionally loved and accepted Clifford, no matter how big he got, or how many times he found himself in a mess! Now that's respect!

Practice: Basket Full of Bread!
Objective: The following activity nurtures essential multicultural awareness skills and using charts to record information skills

Display a basket full of breads from around the world found at local groceries. Explain that people from many cultures bake bread, but not everyone's bread looks or tastes the same. Identify shapes, sizes, colors, special ingredients, baking methods, and which culture each bread represents. Decorate tables with national flags, art, and maps showing where each bread originally came from. Divide children into small groups. Move from table to table, tasting breads. At each table, have children sign their name on a log sheet and check a smiley face or a sad face icon to indicate their opinion of the bread. Count and record the number of smiley/sad faces. Chart the results, review, and share opinions. To end activity, take a nature walk and spread breadcrumbs for the birds to enjoy!

The more we learn about each other, the better we can all work and play together! Find local celebrations for children to attend that promote diversity, or ask someone from a cultural celebration to come share with class. Schedule a day each month called "Diversity University" to explore an unfamiliar culture.

Clifford's Library
These books support Clifford's Big Ideas and reinforce valuable early literacy skills:

  • Clifford's Birthday by Norman Bridwell (Scholastic)

Printable - Have Respect
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