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Understanding redlining


Students read a handout about the practice of redlining and answer questions about its impact on individuals and communities.

Big idea

Redlining is an illegal practice where people living in a certain area or neighborhood are not given the same access to loans and other credit services as people in other areas or neighborhoods on the basis of race, color, national origin, or some other prohibited reason.

Essential questions

  • What is redlining?
  • How does redlining affect communities today?
  • What protections are in place to prevent redlining?


  • Understand how redlining began and how it continues to affect communities today
  • Describe protections in place to prevent redlining

What students will do

  • Become familiar with the history of redlining.
  • Answer questions about redlining’s impact on families and neighborhoods.
  • Identify laws and government agencies that prevent redlining.

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Teacher guide


Student materials



Note: Please remember to consider your students’ accommodations and special needs to ensure that all students are able to participate in a meaningful way.