Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Highlight – Activity Ideas You Can Use in Your Own Program

This month, we’re sharing a few more Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) activities from programs that participated in DIEEC’s Anti-Bias Education: Diversity professional learning experience (PLE) back in February.

Two programs used a “loose parts faces” activity with children as the basis for discussing emotions and expressions. Valerie Brown, lead Pre-K teacher at Cadence Academy Preschool – Smyrna, shared that the idea to use pool noodle sections for facial features came from a unit on Tubes and Tunnels. The faces shown in the images below inspired children to talk about how the mouths made the expressions different. 

Cari Boehne, lead teacher in a preschool classroom at the little school at Kids Cottage (Dover) shared an idea related to the Windows, Mirrors and Doors component of the PLE. The classroom has a shared photo album: families can send in photos, and staff take photos of children engaging in activities throughout the year. Cari said that the children love to share the photos with each other, and that they also enjoy taking the albums to the cozy area to look at on their own. Many children tell stories of their families and events when they share the photos with each other.  Staff also look at the photos with the children to reflect on the year and comment, “Look how much you have grown!” or “Do you remember this?  We talked about this a long time ago.”  

Elaine Grant and Sandra Bradley, Lead and Assistant Teachers at Brandywine Childcare and Preschool, Inc. (Claymont) shared another idea as part of the Windows, Mirrors and Doors discussion. They had mothers share bios, stories and photos from their lives, with the theme of Moms as Heroes. These were shared with the children to help them understand that superheroes can be people we know!  Elaine said the stories were very inspirational to the children. This idea could be applied to many different family and community members!

We hope these ideas provide some inspiration for your own early childhood education programs!

Resource: Let’s Make Faces book by Hanoch Piven. This book is available through the Delaware public library system.