Building Social Awareness
Purpose of Building Social Awareness
Social awareness is defined by the Collaborate for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL) as, "the ability to take the perspective of and empathize with others, including those from diverse backgrounds and cultures." To develop social awareness, students must build skills in perspective-taking, empathy, appreciating diversity, and respecting others. source: “Core SEL Competencies.” Casel, Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning, 2017, https://casel.org/core-competencies/.
This guide provides resources to build general social awareness and address Holocaust education as specified by Senate Bill 1828. The week of January 25, 2021 has been chosen as the date for Holocaust Remembrance Week. (International Holocaust Remembrance Day is January 27, which is the date that Auschwitz was “liberated” by Allied troops.)
Holocaust Remembrance Week shall include age-appropriate instruction.
- Information about the history of and lessons learned from the Holocaust;
- Participation, in person or using technology, in learning projects about the Holocaust;
- The use of materials developed or approved by the Texas Holocaust and Genocide Commission.
*Please note that the THGC, like the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, does not recommend explicit Holocaust instruction before 6th grade. Elementary schools may choose their own materials that cover broader themes, such as community, tolerance, being an upstander, and anti-bullying.
Building Social Awareness General Resources
Teachers and librarians should familiarize themselves with the resources and philosophy for teaching about sensitive topics as outlined in the following resources:
- Texas Holocaust and Genocide Commission
- Guidelines for Teaching about the Holocaust
- Echoes & Reflections
- United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
- Holocaust Memorial Museum of San Antonio - the HMMSA is offering virtual tours at this time. Visit their website to schedule a virtual visit. The museum is also offering 2 different virtual presentations throughout Holocaust Remembrance Week, Jan 25-29. Register online for the zoom webinars. Pre-recorded sessions will also be available.
- Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum - virtual programs, lectures and field trips available (grants available)
- Holocaust Museum Houston -
- USC Shoah Foundation
- Teaching Tolerance
- Teaching for Change
- Facing History and Ourselves