Civics Education Resource Site

Teaching LGBTQ+ History Toolkit

HB 0246 amends the U.S. History requirement of the Illinois School Code to read, In public schools only, the teaching of history shall include a study of the roles and contributions of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people in the history of this country and this state.

The Inclusive Curriculum Law, signed by Governor J.B. Pritzker on Aug. 9, 2019, mandates that by the time students finish eighth grade, public schools must teach them about contributions to state and U.S. history made by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.

Illinois has curated a number of resources to help educators meet the Inclusive Curriculum Law.


  • partnered with the Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center to host a webinar on how to Create Safe Inclusive Classroom Spaces for Teaching LGBTQ+ History.
  • The Curriculum Design Toolkit at has a number of resources to create a climate for civic learning.
  • The Illinois State Board of Education has a School Wellness webpage designed to provide support to school districts as they, in turn, seek to support ALL students in Illinois schools. This webpage also serves to apprise LGBTQ students of their rights under relevant law​. ​​​
  • Teaching Tolerance has an LGBTQ Best Practices Guide to help create an inclusive and safe classroom environment and recommendations on how to incorporate LGBTQ history into your classroom.
  • Facing History and Ourselves has a lesson on LGBTQ History and Why it Matters.
  • GLSEN has a plethora of LGBTQ History Resources from lesson plans to podcasts to support classrooms.
  • CNN recently published a timeline of LGBTQ milestones.
  • The October 2017 issue of Social Education published by the National Council for the Social Studies was dedicated to LGBTQ+ Issues in Social Education.
  • Share My Lesson has a resource page dedicated to LGBTQ History Lessons.
  • PBS News Hour Extra has curated a number of current events to start the exploration of LGBT Issues.
  • Welcoming Schools shares lesson plans to support LGBTQ+ Inclusive Elementary Schools.
  • GLSEN, ADL, and StoryCorps have collaborated to create Unheard Voices, an oral history and curriculum project helping educators integrate lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) history, people, and issues into their instructional program.
  • The Making Gay History podcast mines Eric Marcus’s decades old audio archive of rare interviews — conducted for his award-winning oral history of the LGBTQ civil rights movement — to create intimate, personal portraits of both known and long-forgotten champions, heroes, and witnesses to history.
  • The Chicago LGBT Hall of Fame is both a historic event and an exhibit. Through the Hall of Fame, residents of Chicago and the world are made aware of the contributions of Chicago’s lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender communities and the communities’ efforts to eradicate homophobic bias and discrimination.
  • Equality Illinois builds a better Illinois by advancing equal treatment and full acceptance of the LGBTQ community.
  • Teaching LGBTQ History focuses on providing resources and materials that fulfill the requirements put forth by the California FAIR Education Act with regard to LGBTQ history. The website includes lesson plans and materials that educators in California, and beyond, can use to teach about LGBTQ history in every time period.
  • Rise Up! Stonewall and the LGBTQ Rights Movement from the Newseum is a pop-up exhibit that will soon be coming to the Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center.
  • Teaching Tolerance’s new streaming classroom film, Bibi, tells the story of a Latinx father and son who can talk about anything—but only in writing. And after Ben, affectionately called “Bibi” by his father, hands his father a letter that reads “I’m gay,” the two don’t talk at all. The film and accompanying lesson plans for grades 6-12 explore the questions: How do we come to be who we are? How do we communicate that to others? How do we respond when others share themselves with us?