About this site

Prejudice damages individuals and communities and constitutes the basis of many forms of discrimination and unfair practices. Children develop an awareness of the similarities and differences between people from a very young age. They are influenced by the behaviours and attitudes modelled by those around them and develop their own values and beliefs based on their observations.

Schools are uniquely placed to guide and shape the formation of children's values and to support the development of their identity, self-esteem and critical thinking skills. They play an important role in assisting young students to recognise, accept and respect diversity as well as to explore the ways in which prejudice, stereotypes and discrimination may be created and addressed. Through acknowledging and addressing the issues of prejudice and discrimination, schools can act as positive agents for change and contribute to the creation of a tolerant and just society.

Prejudice. No way! has been developed in response to demand for anti-discrimination and anti-racism teaching and learning activities for students in Years K-3.

The online activities provided aim to assist students in Years K-3 develop the foundation knowledge and skills needed for anti-prejudice and anti-racism understandings. The activities provided aim to assist students to:

  • develop respect and appreciation for individual and cultural similarities and differences
  • explore and discuss how prejudices and stereotypes develop
  • increase awareness of the impact of prejudice and discrimination
  • develop an understanding of how prejudice can influence decision making processes
  • explore how prejudice and discrimination can be challenged.

The approach

Prejudice. No way! activities reflect the anti-bias approach pioneered by Louise Derman-Sparks in Anti-Bias Curriculum: Tools for Empowering Young Children and extended for the Australian context by the Lady Gowrie Child Centre in their Fair Play: Anti-Bias in Action Training Kit, 1997.

Teaching and learning activities for students are integrated across four broad strands:

  1. Developing identity and self esteem
    In this strand, students are encouraged to develop a positive sense of self, recognise diverse identities and empathise with others. This strand emphasises the need for students to value their own personality, appearance, thoughts, feelings, abilities and cultural heritage and the need to value others' similarly.

  2. Being comfortable with difference
    In this strand, students learn to recognise, appreciate and value the diversity of the community. Opportunities are provided for students to explore the similarities and differences of communities and their members.

  3. Understanding prejudice
    In this strand, students learn to recognise fair and unfair situations, stereotypes and prejudice and to understand their impact on both individuals and communities. Students develop the knowledge and skills required to identify and think critically about prejudiced attitudes and behaviours.

  4. Taking action against prejudice
    In this strand, students develop the appropriate skills needed to deal with prejudice and discrimination. Students learn to deal with fair and unfair situations, prejudice and discrimination within the school and broader community.

The activities provided reflect the developmental growth of students in Years K-3 and have been selected for their appropriateness for student age and stage.

It is suggested that the activities be taught at the beginning of the school year over the course of term 1 or 2. Although a number of the activities can be taught in isolation, it is recommended that the program begin in Early Stage 1 and continue through to Stage 2. Where activities are taught out of sequence, some preparatory work may be required to address concepts introduced in previous sessions.

The activities may be presented in a number of ways to meet the needs of students. Teachers may elect to implement all or only some of the activities provided, or to modify activities to meet student needs and available resources.

Outcomes

The teaching and learning activities may be linked to a number of key learning areas, although they are particularly relevant to the NSW Board of Studies syllabuses in Human Society and Its Environment (HSIE) and Personal Development, Health and Physical Education (PDHPE). Learning outcomes to which the activities may be linked include:

HUMAN SOCIETY AND ITS ENVIRONMENT
Stage Outcome Related units
Early Stage 1 CCES1 Describes events or retells stories that demonstrate their own heritage and the heritage of others. School days
This is me!
CUES1 Communicates some common characteristics that all people share, as well as some of the differences.
SSES1 Identifies ways in which their own needs and the needs of others are met, individually and co-operatively.
Stage 1 CCS1.1 Communicates the importance of past and present people, days and events in their life, in the lives of family and community members and in other communities. Celebrations
Families past and present
Identifying us
CUS1.3 Identifies customs, practices, symbols, languages and traditions of their family and other families.
SSS1.8 Identifies roles and responsibilities within families, schools and the local community, and determines ways in which they should interact with others.
Stage 2 CUS2.2 Explains how shared customs, practices, symbols, languages and traditions in communities contribute to Australian and community identities. Co-operating communities
People and their beliefs
Living in communities
CUS2.4 Describes different viewpoints, ways of living, languages and belief systems in a variety of communities.
SSS2.8 Investigates rights, responsibilities and decision making processes in the school and community and demonstrates how participation can contribute to the quality of their school and community life.
PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT, HEALTH AND PHYSICAL EDUCATION (PDHPE)
Stage Outcome Related units
Early Stage 1 DMES1.2 Identifies some options available when making simple decisions. I am special
Me and my friends
INES1.3 Relates well to others in work and play situations.
IRES1.11 Identifies how individuals care for each other.
Stage 1 INS1.3 Develops positive relationships with peers and other people. There is only one ME
Getting along with others
GDS1.9 Describes characteristics that make them both similar to others and unique.
IRS1.11 Identifies the ways in which they communicate, co-operate and care for others.
Stage 2 INS2.3 Makes positive contributions to group activities. My growing self
Building my network
PSS2.5 Uses a range of problem-solving strategies.
IRS2.11 Describes how relationships with a range of people enhance well-being.

Acknowledgments

The Prejudice. No way! project has been jointly developed by the NSW Department of Education and Communities and the B'nai B'rith Anti-Defamation Commission.