Stories of Belonging

Guiding Questions:

Adapted from the Project Zero Three Whys Thinking-Routine.

  • Why does belonging matter to individuals?
  • Why does it matter to my community?
  • What does it matter to the world?


Ask students to investigate the stories and images collected on the Belonging Begins with US website and select three stories that speak to them. Encourage students to make articulate how the stories:

  • Connect with their understanding of Belonging
  • Extend their understanding of Belonging
  • And, challenge their understanding of Belonging.

With the Project Zero Connect-Extend-Challenge Thinking Routine. 

Create a structure that allows students to share the connections they made to the stories with their peers in pairs or small groups.

To close this activity, ask students to identify some common themes that arose in the conversation about the stories and some of the ways these stories challenged the way people in the class thought about belonging. 

Finish the lesson by directly exploring the guiding questions for this lesson. One way to facilitate the conversation is with a silent conversation. To do that, hang chart paper with the three questions and encourage students to write their answers and speak to their peers in writing.  Here is a useful protocol for the activity from Facing History and Ourselves.

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