Grade 10

Countering Hate Speech Online

How can we counter online hate speech and xenophobia?

As humans, we thrive on social connections and group associations. But this tendency can also lead us to be suspicious of people outside our group. This fear -- xenophobia -- can be overcome by more exposure to people who are different from us. However, the internet can often make this more difficult. Help students recognize this challenge and find strategies for navigating content online.

Students will be able to:
  • Describe the relationship between hate speech and xenophobia.
  • Analyze how the internet has contributed to an increase in hate speech and extremist views.
  • Describe one way to use the internet to combat one type of hate speech.
Key Vocabulary: counterspeech  ·  extremism  ·  hate speech  ·  xenophobia
messages that challenge or debunk extremism and stereotypes
the holding of extreme political or religious views
hate speech:
making cruel, hostile, or negative statements about someone based on their race, religion, national origin, ability, age, gender, or sexual orientation
the fear or distrust of someone or something that is foreign or unknown
Cyberbullying, Digital Drama & Hate Speech
This lesson meets standards for CASELAASLand ISTESee standards
Don't have time for a full lesson?
15 mins.
Use this quick activity to engage students around key learning outcomes.  Get the quick activity

Lesson Plan

50 mins.
Extension Activity:

​​1. Have students use Flipgrid or another video discussion app to record and share their idea for combating hate speech and xenophobia. Make sure they identify what type of hate speech or xenophobia they are responding to.

2. Work with students to plan and promote a counter-narrative campaign using The Counter-Narrative Toolkit.

What You'll Need

Blank paper  
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Classroom resources

  • Lesson Slides
  • Student Handout: The Internet and Extremism Student Version Teacher Version
  • Lesson Quiz

Take-home resources