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Curriculum & Resources

Curricula and lesson plans on topics ranging from climate change to happiness.


In each of the following categories, you'll find a variety of teaching tools for immediate use in the classroom or for building your own curriculum.  These resources include: lessons, curriculum, poetry, videos, projects, stories, and essays.

Treasure Chest

Photo by nezumichuu

:: Teaching Happiness

Discover the good life through resilience, creativity, and community.

:: Teaching Outside the Box

Meaningful learning pushes boundaries with action, inquiry, and innovation.

:: Teaching Peace & Justice

Paths to peace, inclusion, equality, and compassion for all.

:: Teaching Sustainability 

How to build a robust economy, healthy planet, and just world for all.

:: Visual Learning

Use the wonder of a photo to engage in deep discussions and understanding.


Curriculum & Resources: The Corporation Curriculum & Resources: The Corporation
Watch a new video about an eighth grade class using The Corporation film as a discussion starter. Share with your students using free curriculum from The Ontario Institute of Studies in Education.
Visual Learning: Who Is That Masked Man? Visual Learning: Who Is That Masked Man?
Visual literacy lesson plan focusing on Guy Fawkes mask image and the issue of corporate power and deception.
YES! Recommends: The Story of Stuff Project YES! Recommends: The Story of Stuff Project
The Story of Stuff Project now offers more films that explain and inform. Check out The Story of Broke, The Story of Citizens United v. FEC, and don't miss out on free curriculum from Facing the Future.
Curriculum & Resources: De-Stress Your Classroom Curriculum & Resources: De-Stress Your Classroom
Edutopia bundle of resources on meditation programs that can be used in school. Steps and benefits to bringing meditation to the classroom.
Curriculum & Resources: Teaching Social Movements Curriculum & Resources: Teaching Social Movements
A collection of YES! resources for teaching about Occupy and other social movements.
Curriculum & Resources: The Legacy Project Curriculum & Resources: The Legacy Project
Cornell Professor Karl Pillemer, founder of The Legacy Project: Lessons for Living from the Wisest Americans, collected over 1,500 interviews of elders on a variety of subjects. In text and video, the oldest living generations of Americans share their experiences.
Words That Inspire: 3/4-Baked Words That Inspire: 3/4-Baked
Jason McLennan suggests that we stop "chasing perfection."
Curriculum & Resources: Academy of Achievement Curriculum & Resources: Academy of Achievement
With biographies, personal interviews, and powerful images, the Academy of Achievement provides the opportunity for students to find a modern hero that resonates with their life. A content-rich Achiever Gallery of photos and a well-organized curriculum are terrific resources for hero projects or studies.
Visual Learning: You Say Tomato, I Say Tomahto Visual Learning: You Say Tomato, I Say Tomahto
Visual Learning activity using an image of industrial tomato field in the central valley of California.
YES! Recommends: ServiceSpace YES! Recommends: ServiceSpace
ServiceSpace is a movement for generosity on social and personal levels. The site features projects that inspire generous behavior and chronicle the acts of kindness of ServiceSpace volunteers.
When You Tell Them My Story, Please Mention That I Like Flaming Hot Cheetos When You Tell Them My Story, Please Mention That I Like Flaming Hot Cheetos
What happens when students are given the honor and onus of writing a complete stranger's story in poetry form? Middle school students from rural and urban Oregon took the risk, transforming preconceived notions—from gangs to trailer trash, stuck up rich people to redneck hicks— into bridges.
Words That Inspire: Because Words That Inspire: Because
Instead of a letter, Terry Tempest Williams wrote a poem to nominate Lily Yeh as a YES! Breakthrough 15 Hero. The poem shared the many reasons why Lily Yeh is worthy of consideration. Who are the people students might be inspired to honor with a poem?
YES! Recommends: Americans Who Tell The Truth YES! Recommends: Americans Who Tell The Truth
Americans Who Tell the Truth spotlights 170 portraits of truth tellers—people who fought for all people's rights with courage and determination—to teach students of all ages not only about their heritage, but also to stand up for what they believe in.
Visual Learning: To Dye For Visual Learning: To Dye For
With this YES! lesson plan, try to truly understand an image, its message, and why it's interesting (or not). In this case, it's all about where we get our clothes.
Curriculum & Resources: Maps That Stretch the Mind Curriculum & Resources: Maps That Stretch the Mind
Like history, maps tell a story from the writer or creator's perspective. ODT Maps believes that there are many ways to see the world—including upside down. Explore the organization's many maps (with thoughtful explanations), videos, free downloads, quizzes, and more.
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