New Book Helps Teachers Build Inclusive Lesson Plans

Dr. Sarah Kaka an assistant professor of Education at Ohio Wesleyan University is the editor of a new book designed to help middle and high school teachers Dr. Sarah KakaDr. Sarah Kaka provide standards-based lessons that address issues of historical inequity and inequality.

The book – Hollywood or History? An Inquiry-Based Strategy for Using Film to Teach About Inequality and Inequity Throughout History – includes 30 lessons that cover “issues surrounding gender inequity, slavery as the root of racial inequality, racial inequity, LGBTQ+ rights, American Indian rights, economic inequality, educational inequity, and even intersectionalities (overlapping identities),” said Kaka, who is also the director of the university’s Middle Childhood, Adolescence to Young Adult, and Multi-Age Licensure Programs.

“Every lesson in this book has the potential to be perceived as ‘controversial’ or ‘uncomfortable’ history,” said Kaka. “But teachers need to be better equipped to teach this content within the constraints of anti-CRT (Critical Race Theory) legislation. … The lessons give teachers the tools to help students examine issues from multiple perspectives, which is what the legislation requires.

 “This book could literally not be any more timely,” she said. “As of right now, 14 states have passed legislation that bans teaching ‘divisive’ issues in schools – issues such as racism, sexism, white privilege, and sexuality. Twenty-two other states have similar legislation in process, including Ohio’s House Bill 327