Sometimes learning isn’t about fun crafts and awesome theme lessons and funny reads. Nope. Sometimes, the most important learning takes place when we are pushed out of our comfort zones and tackle the tough topics, just like those in The Hate U Give.
What is The Hate U Give?
The Hate U Give is a young adult novel by Angie Thomas.
It covers race relations from the viewpoint of a young African American girl living in two different worlds who is thrust into a tragedy and forced to take a stand.
In 2018, it was made into a movie.
The Hate U Give Book
The Hate U Give is about an African-American girl named Starr Carter who feels like she exists in two different worlds as two different people–in her black neighborhood and also in her rich (predominantly white) private school.
One night, Starr and her friend Khalil (also African American) leave a party and are pulled over by a white police officer.
The office ends up shooting Khalil and Starr is the only witness to it.
Starr and her family and friends then navigate the different experiences created by this tragedy.
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The Hate U Give Review and Summary
Here’s what the School Library Journal had to say about the book:
After Starr and her childhood friend Khalil, both black, leave a party together, they are pulled over by a white police officer, who kills Khalil. The sole witness to the homicide, Starr must testify before a grand jury that will decide whether to indict the cop, and she’s terrified, especially as emotions run high. By turns frightened, discouraged, enraged, and impassioned, Starr is authentically adolescent in her reactions. Inhabiting two vastly different spheres—her poor, predominantly black neighborhood, Garden Heights, where gangs are a fact of life, and her rich, mostly white private school—causes strain, and Thomas perceptively illustrates how the personal is political: Starr is disturbed by the racism of her white friend Hailey, who writes Khalil off as a drug dealer, and Starr’s father is torn between his desire to support Garden Heights and his need to move his family to a safer environment.
The book was inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement and also Tupac Shakur.
Also, the book is a William C. Morris Award Winner, a National Book Award Longlist, a Printz Honor Book, a Coretta Scott King Honor Book, and also a #1 New York Times Bestseller.
NOTE: This is mature content and the book is recommended for Grades 8 and up.
The Hate U Give Movie
The book has now been made into a movie!
(I love when you can read a book, then watch the movie, and compare and contrast for an additional facet of learning!)
The Hate U Give Movie Trailer
Here’s the trailor for the movie:
The Hate U Give Cast
The Hate U Give movie main cast of characters include:
- Amandla Stenberg as Starr Carter
- Regina Hall as Lisa Carter (Starr’s mother)
- Russell Hornsby as Maverick “Big Mav” Carter (Starr’s father)
- KJ Apa as Chris (Starr’s boyfriend)
- Algee Smith as Khalil (Starr’s childhood best friend)
- Lamar Johnson as Seven Carter (Starr’s half-brother)
- TJ Wright as Sekani (Starr’s younger brother)
- Sabrina Carpenter as Hailey (Starr’s friend)
- Megan Lawless as Maya (Starr’s friend)
- Dominique Fishback as King (a gangster)
- (Rapper) Common as Carlos (Starr’s uncle and a police officer)
- Issa Rae as April Ofrah, an activist
TRY THIS THEME LESSON NEXT: Wonder Lesson Plans (Book and Movie)
The Hate U Give Lessons, Activities, and Projects
The Hate U Give (book and movie) covers topics and issues like:
- Race and Racism
- Living multiple identities
- Gang culture
- Police brutality
- The Black Panther Party
- Tupac Shakur
- Black Lives Matter Movement
- Importance of speaking up (or, consequences of not speaking up)
And SO MUCH MORE.
(Feeling uncomfortable yet? Yeah, these are tough–but IMPORTANT–topics to discuss with your teens!)
Like I mentioned earlier, this isn’t going to be a warm and fuzzy theme lesson. However, that shouldn’t make you shy away from these kinds of topics with your older kids.
It’s so important to open a dialogue on different issues, even if they make you (or the kids) uncomfortable!
Here are some ways that you can incorporate The Hate U Give book and/or the movie into your learning…
59 Ways to Incorporate The Hate U Give (Book and Movie) Into Learning
The Hate U Give Book and Movie Companion Lessons and Activities
Read the book (affiliate link) and watch the movie
Black Lives Matter Lessons
Watch the video, Black Lives Matter, explained [VIDEO BELOW]
Watch a video discussion on Code-Switching [VIDEO BELOW]
Watch a TEDx video, The Cost of Code-Switching [VIDEO BELOW]
Multiculturalism, Diversity, Racism, and Race Relations
Read and discuss, Why Are All the Black Kids Sitting Together in the Cafeteria?: And Other Conversations About Race(affiliate link)
Do the activity, Circles of My Multicultural Self
Learn about The History of Other Hate Symbols
Family, Family Traditions, and Ancestry
Activism for Kids
Complete a lesson plan on Resistance 101: A Lesson on Social Justice Activists and Strategies
Get a Youth’s Activist Toolkit
Complete a lesson plan on The Rise of Community Activism
Tupac Shukar and THUGLIFE
The author was inspired by Tupac Shukar and THUGLIFE, so incorporating some of the musician and his philosophies into these lesson plans is imperative. However, be aware that there may be some language with the readings, music, and videos (which, personally, I think is another door to open for discussion, no matter how you feel about it).
Watch Tupac explain THUGLIFE (WARNING: Language) [VIDEO BELOW]
Read The Rose That Grew From Concrete (affiliate link)
Clearly there are hundreds more examples of ways you can incorporate the lessons and topics from book and movie into your learning. However, these are a good starting place that will allow you to pick and choose some of the things you want to cover more deeply.
Have you read The Hate U Give or seen the movie with your teens? How are you carrying the discussions forward in your home, class, group, or learning?