With a good deal of the literature, film, and online resources we use, there are opportunities to discuss instances of speciesism, animal use and abuse that is described, just as there are opportunities to discuss feminism, racism, ableism, and other discriminatory language and activity.
In the biological sciences, there are opportunities to read about and discuss the ethical problems with animal testing as well as the inefficacy of their results. In human anatomy and nutrition, we can look at how a plant-based diet prevents and reverses disease and I use information from the course I took in Plant-Based Nutrition certificate from Cornell/The T Colin Campbell Foundation (Continuing Medical Education credits). In nature and environmental studies, we look at how animal farming contributes more to pollution than all other industries combined, and the psychological impact and other problems with domesticating “wild” animals and keeping them in small zoos/cages/pools.
A few resources
Ruby Roth’s beautiful books (also a good art resource!):
V is for Vegan: The ABCs of Being Kind
That’s Why We Don’t Eat Animals: A Book about Vegans, Vegetarians, and All Living Things
Vegan Is Love: Having Heart and Taking Action
nutritionfacts.org: Physician and New York Times bestselling author Dr Michael Greger scours the world’s nutrition research to create free daily videos and articles.
Peta Kids: I’m not a fan of PETA but this particular website is a decent intro to many vegan concepts for kids.
Vegan Homeschooling Community on Facebook.
Documentary films for parents & teens
Most of these can be found on Netflix or YouTube, check the content before deciding to show your kids – some have graphic detail of surgery and some farming footage
Earthlings: challenging doco narrated by Joaquin Phoenix
Vegucated: socio-comical doco
Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret: environmental impact of non-vegan consumption habits, Leo diCaprio
Forks Over Knives: health-focused
The Cove and Blackfish: marine animal/farming documentaries
Films for older kids & rarents with vegan(ish) themes
Carnage directed by Simon Amstell: “It’s 2067, the UK is vegan, but older generations are suffering the guilt of their carnivorous past… This spoof piece of black humour parody is full of surreal moments, cookery, cooking – a cooking show – and food… With similarities to Charlie Brooker’s ‘Black Mirror’ series for Netflix and Channel 4…” Features several celebrity cameos.
Okja (Netflix): “Meet Mija, a young girl who risks everything to prevent a powerful, multi-national company from kidnapping her best friend – a fascinating animal named Okja.” By the director of Snowpiercer.
Seven Pounds: “A man with a fateful secret embarks on an extraordinary journey of redemption by forever changing the lives of seven strangers.” There are vegan messages/graffiti hidden in this one.
Kids movies: Babe, Freebirds, 101 Dalmations, Chicken Run, Bambi, Finding Nemo, Charlotte’s Web, Wall-E, Fern Gully