Coming-of-Age Unit Planning Toolkit | Facing History & Ourselves
An English Language Arts teacher prepares to teach a literature unit for middle and high school students.

Coming-of-Age Unit Planning Toolkit

This toolkit provides the framework and classroom resources to help you design a coming-of-age literature unit for middle or high school students using a book of your choosing.


At a Glance



English — US


  • English & Language Arts


  • Culture & Identity


About This Toolkit

The toolkit features classroom-ready resources, such as essential questions, journal prompts, and customizable student activities, as well as guidance to help teachers apply Facing History’s approach to their unit design process.  These resources, along with the educator workbook, support the creation of coming-of-age literature units that center students’ identities and experiences as young adults in the world today.

This toolkit is organized into 7 sections, each of which leads you through a different phase of the unit planning process. Within these sections you’ll find: 

  • Resources for engaging in self-reflection before planning your unit 
  • Guidance on purposeful text selection, including videos with Dr. Kimberly Parker and recommendations for addressing racist and dehumanizing language in literature 
  • Facing History learning objectives and learning outcomes 
  • An adaptable, summative assessment option with a written and oral component
  • 12 essential questions to choose from that support student inquiry and reflection
  • 30 journal prompts and ideas for incorporating journaling into your classroom 
  • 19 learning experiences with classroom activities designed to work with a wide range of texts

Preparing to Teach

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Inside This Toolkit

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Materials and Downloads

Quick Downloads

The additional resources referenced in this toolkit are available in Google Doc format. You can access them all in the folder below. 

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Additional Resources

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Facing History & Ourselves is designed for educators who want to help students explore identity, think critically, grow emotionally, act ethically, and participate in civic life. It’s hard work, so we’ve developed some go-to professional learning opportunities to help you along the way.

The resources I’m getting from my colleagues through Facing History have been just invaluable.
— Claudia Bautista, Santa Monica, Calif