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Strategies for Teaching Equity and Social Comprehension

This course examines the complex topics of equity and social comprehension in the classroom. It is designed to provide educators with strategies to use in the classroom to build trust, empathy, understanding and acceptance. When students learn how to use their own strengths and points of view to contribute in a diverse classroom community, they build confidence, self esteem, learn empathy and deepen the sense of community. This course will raise teacher and student awareness of the concepts of equity, inclusivity, diversity, bias (both explicit and implicit), and social justice. 


Carlow University EDU 602 • Madonna University EDU 5830.56 •  Mercy University EDUT 544 

The required text for this course is Being the Change; Lessons and Strategies to Teach Social Comprehension by Sara K. Ahmed; Heinemann.

ISBN: 9780325099705

Graduate participants earn 3 semester hours of graduate credit and will receive a transcript from one of our partner institutions below. Professional development participants will receive a certificate of completion for 45 hours of professional developments credit for face-to-face classes and 60 hours of professional development credit for online classes.

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Course Schedule

  • 2/13/24 - 5/14/24
  • 4/9/24 - 7/9/24
  • 6/11/24 - 9/10/24
  • 8/13/24 - 11/12/24
  • 10/8/24 - 1/14/25
  • 12/10/24 - 3/11/25

Course Schedule

Spring 2024

  • Mar 22-24 & Mar 29-30
  • Maria Mavrogenis

Summer 2024

  • Aug 9-11 & Aug 23-25
  • Maria Mavrogenis

Fall 2024

  • Dec 6-8 & Dec 13-15
  • Maria Mavrogenis


  • Member Introductions
  • Individual and group expectations
  • Course sessions, resources and requirements

Module One: What is Social Comprehension?

  • What is social comprehension?
  • How do we make meaning from and mediate our relationship with the world”

Module Two: Why do we Need to Talk about Equity in the Classroom?

  • What does it mean to have “equity in education”?
  • How is equity different from equal?
  • Why do we need to talk about equity in the classroom?
  • Eight powerful tools to promote equity in the classroom?
  • Things equity focused teachers should be saying in their classroom now.

Module Three: Knowing Our Identity

  • Affirming our identities
  • Placing ourselves in the world
  • Journeying into our family histories

Module Four: What is Active Empathetic Listening?

  • Introduce active listening by giving kids a chance to show what they already know
  • Build listening skills
  • Tools and Ideas
  • Addressing tensions

Module Five: Self Awareness and Sincerity

  • Seeing our own bias
  • Understanding microaggressions
  • Dismissing others’ biases
  • Respect

Module Six: Becoming Better Informed

  • Understanding how our identity affects us
  • Moving beyond our initial thinking
  • Impact of media

Module Seven: Finding Humanity in Ourselves and Others

  • What is humanity?
  • Broadening our ideas about who we are responsible to and for
  • Understanding others’ perspectives
  • Can we be friends with people who are different from us?

Module Eight: Facing Crisis Together

  • What emotions emerge when facing a crisis?
  • How do we identify, understand and react to these emotions?
  • Understanding how everyone’s identity is at stake.
  • Get out of your echo chamber.
  • Shine a spotlight on upstanders

Module Nine: Creating Comfortable Spaces

  • How can you cultivate a safe learning environment?
  • Setting up your classroom and discussion procedures
  • Show respect
  • Teach micro-affirmations to validate your students

Module Ten: Social comprehension and Equity in Literature

  • Why diversity and equity in content matters for reading growth
  • Discussing equity and social justice through literature
  • Ways to bring more equity to your literacy Instruction
  • Teaching social justice through children’s literature
  • Develop an understanding of social comprehension
    ● Understand the difference between equity and equal
    ● Examine their identities
    ● Explore family histories
    ● Practice active and empathetic listening
    ● Examine their own biases
    ● Identify various micro aggressions and learn to think critically about them
    ● Explore the impact media has on identity
    ● Be encouraged to think about how media affects how they see themselves
    ● Explore who and what they are responsible for
    ● In exploring responsibilities students will be asked to understand other perspectives
    ● Consider crisis situations and how emotions influence behavior in those situations
    ● Examine various appropriate literature to support the teaching of equity and social
    comprehension in the classroom
Important Information

Online 3-graduate credit courses are 13 weeks in length.

On-site weekend courses are held Friday evening from 6:00pm-9:00pm and Saturday/Sunday, 8:30am-5:30pm.

Weekday courses are Monday-Friday from 8:00am- 6:00pm.

It is the responsibility of the student to check with their state, county, district, or school to ensure that all requirements are being met by the course you're taking.  

Check the Partner Universities page for specific university information as well as course numbers which are specific to the university partner. 

Students are required to purchase their own textbook, the information for which can be found here. If no book is required it will be specified on the list. We have copies of many of the textbooks should you wish to purchase directly from TEI. 

Professional development (PD) participants receive a certificate of completion from TEI for 45 hours of PD credit for face to face classes and 60 hours of PD credit for online classes. These certificates are mailed within one week of the end of the class and reflect the course title, dates of attendance, and credit hour information. 

Student Academic Integrity
Participants guarantee that all academic class work is original. Any academic dishonesty or plagiarism (to take ideas, writings, etc. from another and offer them as one's own), is a violation of student academic behavior standards as outlined by our partnering colleges and universities and is subject to academic disciplinary action.