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Speak Up: Student Activities to Take Action

From the second I picked up “Speak Up!” by Miranda Paul, I fell in love with the vibrant colors and spirited illustrations. As I dove in, I fell more in love with the message it conveys. “Speak Up!” joins a group of kids throughout a school day as they discover different ways to speak up and make their voices heard. From speaking up to someone that mispronounces a name, to challenging an unfair rule, or when you know a secret about someone being hurt; “Speak Up!” is filled with scenarios students may encounter and how they can take action to speak up.

The book celebrates diversity and encourages students to speak up and unite with each other to take action when they know something needs to be fixed or changed. It will help build a class community by discussing how students can come together, and that their voice matters in your classroom.

The story teaches students to speak up when they know that something is wrong. It is not always easy, but it is important to be an ally and stand up where you know something is wrong. Sharing this book with your students will help build confidence in your students to step out of their comfort zone and know that their voice will be heard while they're in your classroom, giving them the courage to use their voice out of your classroom as well.

“Speak Up!” Activities

“Speak Up!” is a book that gives actionable ideas for the scenarios presented. It really gives students ways to use their voices and there are so many great activities and conversations you can have together. Here are a few activities that you can do with your students after reading the book:

When to Take Action

Students can think of instances that they believe it is important to speak up and let someone know something is happening.

How to Speak Up

Students can write down how they can speak up and what they can say in different instances. Thinking of actions to take and words to say will help students connect to those situations as they are happening.


Students can reflect on what an ally is and how they can work to be an ally.


Students can think about times they have made mistakes and how they can learn and grow from those mistakes.

Finding Courage

Speaking up really takes a lot of courage and takes students out of their comfort zone. They can think about how they can find the courage to speak up when they know something is not right.

“Speak Up!” is truly a read-aloud gem. Your students will walk away with a sense of empowerment knowing they can take action and speak up for themselves and others. I hope you and your students love it!

You can grab a guide for using this book in your classroom here:

You can find more of my favorite read-aloud books HERE.

And read more about why I think reading aloud is so important HERE.

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Happy Teaching!

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