Instructional Activities

Increasing Awareness and Action around Homophobic Bullying

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The lesson plan for Dan Savage’s It Gets Better Project, developed by the British Columbia Teacher Foundation in Canada, is designed to help grade 10-12 students understand the impact of homophobic bullying in schools and encourages students to create a more accepting school environment for LGBTQ and non-LGBTQ students alike. The It Gets Better Project, started in 2012, is a video campaign started by Dan Savage and his partner Terry, who both experienced victimization and harassment in high school because of their sexual orientation, but how life ultimately got better when they graduated. The purpose of the campaign is to help LGBTQ youth see that there is a happy life beyond the struggles of high school, and to help non-LGBTQ youth to understand the impact that homophobic bullying has on the queer community. In this lesson plan, students watch videos from the It Gets Better Campaign, and discuss the impact of the videos and struggles that many LGBTQ youth face in schools. Students also create their own anti-homophobic bullying videos and present them to their classmates. Throughout the lesson, students engage in discussions about how to create a safe school environment for sexual and gender minority students.