Breakthrough is gearing up for an exciting curriculum rollout this summer aimed at igniting passion, sparking critical thinking, and fostering social change. Guided by our Human First Framework (HFF), this new curriculum will delve into U.S. social movements including the Chicano movement, civil rights, LGBTQ+ rights, Black Power, and women’s suffrage through the use of photography and the arts. 

Designed to engage students in meaningful discussions and activities, this curriculum aims to cultivate solidarity and self-determination for Breakthrough students, providing a space to understand the legacy of activism for various communities throughout American history.

Recognizing the importance of laying a strong foundation for our students’ understanding and response, we have sequenced the curriculum into a two-part series, addressing HFF’s three competencies: 1) knowledge of love and self, 2) solidarity, and 3) self-determination. 

The first series, slated for 8th-grade summer sessions, explores the historical contexts of various movements and will help students understand how to trust and support one another (solidarity) and work together to make a difference (self-determination). Ultimately, students will be encouraged to take action through the lens of photography, amplifying their voices and perspectives.

Moving into 9th-grade summer sessions, students will explore their own identities and stories through reflective activities and narrative writing exercises (knowledge of love self). The aim in this phase extends beyond words to encompass narrative poems, images, and artwork, allowing students to express themselves creatively while advocating for social change. 

As an equity-centered organization, addressing our students’ holistic needs are foundational to our mission and work. As we roll out this new curriculum, we look forward to hearing from affiliates and learning from students how we best support their social-emotional and cultural development – helping students learn and thrive both academically and personally.