“We are all alike…We are all different”
Why Create a classroom Slogan for Inclusion?: Our classrooms are increasingly diverse in their makeup. We have students who have special needs, who are at-risk, experiencing poverty and English Language Learners (ELL). As teachers it is valuable to create a slogan or mantra that can be used to promote inclusion within the classroom.
My Favorite Slogan to promote inclusion: My favorite slogan to promote inclusion comes from one of my favorite early childhood book written and illustrated by kindergarten students. This story details how we are all alike and how we are different. The book details and examines our appearances, lifestyles and interests. I find this book to be very validating and often evokes a response in young children when it asks questions such as “What is your family like?”
The pictures are clearly from the early 90’s but the message is timeless and can be read to all students who are starting to observe how they fit in to the diverse world around them. The last page of the book has a group picture of the kindergarten students who wrote to book in 1991 and it leads one to wonder “where are they now?” and how has this book impacted their lives?
Lesson Plan Extension: To honor the idea of inclusion and diversity in my classroom, I always created a large class book following the outline of this story. Each page contained pictures drawn and pictures taken of my students. We detailed for example the different types of food we all eat and students chose to draw their own foods.
Slogan Use: The slogan was posted in class and whenever the inevitable question came up of WHY another student was different in any way, we would repeat the slogan “We are all alike…We are all different”.