Active Listening and Open-Ended Questions
One way youth work professionals can teach empathy is by modelling active, empathic listening skills.
Teaching Tolerance: Developing Empathy
By explicitly teaching students to be more conscious of other people's feelings, we can create a more accepting and respectful school or community setting. Activities and lesson plans are available for elementary, middle, and high school ages.
Lesson Planet: Empathy Resources
A range of teacher-reviewed classroom resources are linked on this web page, including worksheets, activities, and handouts for various ages. Many are transferable to, or can be adapted for, settings outside the classroom.
Greater Good Science Center: Empathy
This website features research reports, interviews, self-assessment, and other resources on empathy.
Reclaiming Digital Futures: Linking Social and Emotional Learning to Digital Learning
What does digital learning have to do with social and emotional learning? This resource highlights ways that digital learning programs can support youth outcomes around collaboration and empathy.
Edutopia: Five Minute Film Festival
This series of short videos focuses on kindness, empathy, and connection.
Brené Brown on Empathy
In this video short, Dr. Brené Brown reminds us that we can only create a genuine empathic connection if we are brave enough to get in touch with our own fragilities.
Video (3 minutes)
Creating Inclusive and Safe Environments
inspirED: Social Awareness
Designed by teens, educators, and SEL experts, inspirED activities empower students to work together to create more positive school climates and foster greater well-being in their schools and communities. Many of the activities can also be adapted for use outside of schools.
Usable Knowledge: Accentuate the Positive
This brief article and one-minute video from the Harvard Graduate School of Education discuss the transformative power of "microaffirmations."
Identity Safe Classrooms: Resources
In the book Identity Safe Classrooms, authors Steele and Cohn-Vargas promote efforts to ensure that students' social identities are an asset rather than a barrier to success in the classroom. The publisher made the resources and worksheets available as free downloads.
Diversity Activities for Youth and Adults
Cooperative Extension of the State University of Pennsylvania has compiled diversity activities in two free PDFs.
SALTO-YOUTH: Intercultural Communication Resource Pack
SALTO-YOUTH is a European network of eight resource centers advocating for advanced learning and professional training within the youth work field. This manual focuses on intercultural communication skills.
SALTO-YOUTH: Peer Education Approach in Cultural Diversity
This training manual focuses on peer education in cultural diversity projects.
Enhancing Cultural Competence in OST Programs
This Child Trends research brief discusses the elements of cultural competence and its significance for out-of-school time programs. In addition, it provides suggestions to practitioners for developing cultural competence and incorporating activities into their programs in order to benefit youth from a wide range of backgrounds.
Illuminating Differently Abled Awareness
Developed by Cornell University researchers, this curriculum sparks conversations about disability and inclusion among students with their peers, teachers, and parents. Its target age group is middle school. All curriculum materials are available online.
Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network (GLSEN): Educator Resources
GLSEN provides many resources on respect and inclusion, including lesson plans on how to create an inclusive and safe environment.
Nurturing Civic Engagement
Learning to Give: Youth Activities
Learning to Give provides meaningful, fun, and ready-to-use materials that will engage youth in giving to benefit the common good.
National Youth Leadership Council
This website serves as a clearinghouse for national service-learning efforts and materials.
Exploring Community Resources
MAPPED: A Youth Community Mapping Toolkit
The MAPPED Toolkit, written specifically for the city of Vancouver, is a resource for adults hoping to engage youth in community planning.
Photovoice Manual and Resource Kit
Produced by the Hamilton Community Foundation, this manual provides practical guidelines for those wishing to start a new Photovoice program.