Helping Children to Become “Identity Literate”

Article

How recognizing and utilizing identity dynamics in the classroom can increase resilience, self-actualisation, and counter divisive attitudes and behaviours.

Learning Objectives

  • To provide a foundational understanding of how identity works in children and in adults to fulfil universal needs and solve day-to-day problems
  • To understand how to interpret expressions and behaviours from an identity perspective to resolve conflicts at their root
  • To understand basic techniques to help the child recognise diverse identity options that can foster development and growth
  • To understand how to prevent and counter mono-identity expressions which inhibit growth and leave the child at risk of antisocial attitudes and behaviours

Content 

Improved identity literacy can help the child to recognize and resist divisive cultural narratives as well as effectively process and manage discriminatory attitudes and behaviours in themselves and others.

This course allows the teacher to gain an understanding of how identity works as a psychological and social system in children and in adults. Understanding identity as a system that helps all individuals to fulfil universal human needs and solve everyday problems helps the teacher to build identity literacy in the classroom.

Through equipping the child with the understanding of how their own identities function in everyday interactions, the child can learn to recognize how flexible and diverse identities are created and shaped. This learning extends the child’s “identity literacy”, increasing resilience and self-actualisation as a result.

Additional benefits of increased literacy are the ability to more accurately interpret the deeper roots of one’s own or others’ actions, expressions and behaviours. This allows for conflicts and issues to be tackled at their core, potentially allowing for more effective resolution, problem-solving and learning experiences to take place within and beyond the classroom.

Course Materials

The course will provide infographics that summarise the key concepts and techniques for quick reference in the future. The course exercises will make use of video clips and group work. The course will be delivered online and use slides and video presentations for its main content delivery.

Target Audience

Applicable for all teachers at all levels. Teachers are encouraged to contribute their ideas as to how the material might be best applied at their level and in their context.

Registration

This course is now available online. Please visit https://oicd.net/idu/ for more information.

Staff

OICD instructors and facilitators:

Dr Bruce White and Mr Chikara Shimasaki