Discrimination Lesson Plan

Instructor: Sharon Linde

Sharon has a Masters of Science in Mathematics

Define discrimination and teach students the different types using this video-based lesson. Start off by talking about discrimination in a broad way, then narrow the focus to specific types. Finish up by reading primary-source documents outlining anti-discrimination laws.

Learning Objectives

After this lesson, students will be able to:

  • define discrimination
  • list and discuss different types of discrimination
  • examine primary source anti-discrimination documents


1 hour


  • Copies of the lesson What is Discrimination? - Definition & Examples
  • Anti-discrimination primary source documents discussed in the lesson (one for each 3-4-student group), such as:
    • Equal Pay Act of 1963
    • Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964
    • Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967
    • Civil Service Reform Act of 1978
    • Pregnancy Discrimination Act of 1978
    • Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986
    • Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990
    • Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008
    • Executive Order 13087

Curriculum Standards

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RH.9-10.1

Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources, attending to such features as the date and origin of the information.

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RH.9-10.2

Determine the central ideas or information of a primary or secondary source; provide an accurate summary of how key events or ideas develop over the course of the text.

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RH.9-10.3

Analyze in detail a series of events described in a text; determine whether earlier events caused later ones or simply preceded them.

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RH.9-10.4

Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including vocabulary describing political, social, or economic aspects of history/social science.


  • Start the lesson by having students respond in writing to the prompt, 'Who can be a victim of discrimination?'
  • Share answers and list on the board, discussing each briefly. Put into categories, such as 'Gender' or 'Race.'
  • Tell students they will be working on defining discrimination, identifying types of discrimination and analyzing anti-discrimination laws. Distribute copies of the transcript for the lesson, then start the video What is Discrimination? - Definition & Examples.
  • Pause at 3:01. Instruct students to highlight the definition of discrimination and the names of anti-discrimination laws. Ask:
    • Are all forms of discrimination legal? Should they be? Explain.
    • What are some forms of discrimination that are illegal? Why are they?
    • What are some places or actions that are protected by anti-discrimination laws?
    • What are some areas where students are protected under the Title IX of Education Amendments of 1972? What are examples of how this legislation might protect students in some of these environments.
  • Instruct students to highlight forms of discrimination as the next section plays, then resume the video.
  • Pause at 4:40 and ask students to share the different types of discrimination. Add to the list you began earlier. Discuss:
    • Why are some forms of discrimination legal?
    • What are some examples of discrimination that are legal?
    • What are some examples of discrimination that are illegal?
  • Play the lesson summary. Answer any student questions and clarify areas of confusion.

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