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A Teacher’s Guide for Grades 9-12:


Meet the students of Albany High School—a diverse group of young people growing up in a small, progressive Bay Area town—and witness the explosive fallout across the school community after a student-run racist social media account targeting Black students is discovered. We chose this book for its powerful attention to timely social and emotional themes: impacts of social media, hate speech & edgy humor, anti-Black racism, harm & trauma, justice & accountability, and self- reflection & growth. Students will find themselves urgently engrossed in this complex, nuanced story about the intersection of old wounds and new technologies; this curriculum will help students make connections between the events at Albany High and their own digital citizenship.

Accountable is a book of creative nonfiction, exploring a series of events that started in 2017— when high school students in the small Bay Area town of Albany discovered a private Instagram account used to post explicitly racist images targeting people of color throughout the school community. The fallout and ensuing tensions rocked the affluent, liberal town and swept national news headlines. The book traces the perspectives and experiences of many of the teenagers involved: including those who were directly targeted by the posts, those who created the account and its content, and the bystanders who followed the account. The author, Dashka Slater, spent four years researching the events in order to provide an incredibly nuanced account of what took place, piecing together details from court documents, sworn declarations, police reports, text messages, diaries, photographs, videos, social media posts, letters, emails, and public testimony, as well as firsthand observations and interviews with many of the people involved. In retelling the story from multiple perspectives, Accountable asks readers to examine questions of justice, healing, empathy, and accountability.

Author:  Dashka Slater

Our Reading with Relevance teacher’s guide breaks the novel into a series of thoughtful lesson plans. Each lesson is designed to support you to meaningfully explore the social and emotional themes of the day’s reading with your students, inspiring them to read deeply, think critically, talk openly, and write reflectively about topics that matter.

This teacher’s guide includes:

  • A facilitator’s guide with tips and resources for implementing the curriculum.
  • A map of Common Core Standards addressed through this program.
  • 16 individual lesson plans, including vocabulary, discussion questions, journal prompts, extension activities, and all handouts.
  • Two assessments to monitor student progress throughout the program.
  • Regular checkpoints to help teachers assess their students’ progress on ELA standards.
  • A culminating essay-writing unit.
  • An appendix with additional teaching resources and activities to continue exploring this novel.

Pages: 108
Dimensions: 8.5″ x 11″


Companion Student Workbook:


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