Lesson Plan: Celebrating Diversity Through “Maya Sings Country”
Grade Level: 1st Grade
Duration: 2 Class Periods (approximately 30 minutes each)
- To introduce the concept of diversity and inclusion to 1st-grade students.
- To explore the book “Maya Sings Country” by Carylee Carrington.
- To engage in discussions about diversity, music, and friendship.
- To create a simple and inclusive class activity.
- Copies of “Maya Sings Country” by Carylee Carrington
- Whiteboard and markers
- Art supplies (paper, markers, crayons)
- Optional: Access to the song “Black and Country (Maya’s Song)” for listening
Day 1: Introduction to Diversity and Friendship
Opening (10 minutes):
1. Begin by discussing what the word “diversity” means. Use simple language and ask students if they know what makes people different from each other.
Reading Activity (15 minutes):
2. Introduce the book “Maya Sings Country” by Carylee Carrington, showcasing the cover and mentioning that it’s about friendship and music.
3. Read the book aloud, emphasizing the friendship between Maya and Rosie and the idea that everyone can enjoy music together.
Discussion (10 minutes):
4. Engage the students in a discussion about the book’s themes:
- Who are the main characters in the story?
- How do Maya and Rosie show kindness and friendship?
- Why is it important to include everyone when we play or sing?
Day 2: Exploring Music and Inclusivity
Listening Activity (10 minutes):
5. Play the song “Black and Country (Maya’s Song)” if available or discuss its importance to the story. Ask the students how it makes them feel.
Creative Activity (20 minutes):
6. Explain to the students that they will create their own musical instruments using art supplies. Provide them with materials like paper, markers, and crayons.
7. Encourage students to make instruments that represent their unique personalities and interests.
Sharing and Inclusivity (10 minutes):
8. Have each student share their handmade musical instrument with the class. Encourage applause and positive feedback to make everyone feel included.
Homework/Extension Activity (Optional):
- Encourage students to share their musical instruments with their families and have a mini jam session at home.
- Informal assessment through class discussion, participation, and their engagement in the creative activity.
This lesson plan introduces 1st-grade students to the concepts of diversity, friendship, and inclusion through the book “Maya Sings Country.” By discussing the story’s themes and engaging in creative activities, students will start to understand the importance of celebrating differences and being inclusive, just like Maya and Rosie in the book.