Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum

Teacher professional development and classroom resources across the curriculum

Monthly Update sign up
Mailing List signup
Search
MENU
  Making Civics Real: A Workshop for Teachers  
Home    |    Workshops 1-8    |    Tools for Teaching    |    Support Materials    |    Site Map


Channel-Talk

Re: [Channel-talkcivics] Making Civics Real

From: Lisa & Bill Lee <lblee@athenet.net>
Date: Fri Aug 17 2007 - 15:47:52 EDT
X-Mailer: Apple Mail (2.624)

Yes it is a semester course, although that may be reconsidered
depending how this test run semester goes.
On Aug 17, 2007, at 2:20 PM, Lynn Saxton wrote:

> Interesting, Bill! Since you say time is limited, am I right in
> assuming that this is a semester course? And for all of you, are you
> teaching in blocks or traditional 40 minute periods? So far we are
> still on a traditional schedule, but I can see the benefit of having
> more time in class for these types of activities.
>
> I'd like to use something similar with my students, but I do face the
> challenge of dealing with a mandated course in which the students are
> mostly not as motivated as yours will obviously be. In fact, we have
> a college-level course in government which will siphon off the most
> motivated kids. I can see, however, that this type of course could be
> very motivating if you present it the right way.
>
> Lynn
>
>>>> Lisa & Bill Lee <lblee@athenet.net> 08/17/07 2:16 PM >>>
> Hi Lynn
>
> One of my colleagues has played Fantasy Congress and found it quite
> fun. Unfortunately, we haven't taken the next step - only discussed
> using it in some manner.
>
> The senior elective is constructed in a fashion similar to the
> Minnesota course that appears in one of the videos. Because it is the
> first year we have decided to limit it to 1 section of 20 students.
> The students (seniors only) needed signed registration approval forms
> from 2 of 9 department members to be eligible. As a single group,
> students will need to go through a step-by-step process of identifying
> an issue or concern of a local nature (district, city, county, etc.);
> they will create a system to gather information about the issue from
> surveys, interviews, attendance at local government unit meetings;
> using a similar process they will identify possible solutions along
> with a pro/con rubric. Throughout the process they will provide
> written overviews reflecting on their process (most likely some type of
> journal). When they have identified a possible solution along with
> benefits, costs, time, etc. they will present it at the appropriate
> forums. The goal is to reach the point of a presentation and feedback.
> Because the time is limited we aren't sure how to handle the
> challenge
> of a long drawn out process which is likely. That is why we required
> approval forms in which students commit to working beyond the length of
> the course as is possible and necessary. For this first time out of
> the gate we were very selective with the students picking high
> achieving, dedicated students who can work independently and in groups.
>
> We have stressed that this is a civics course that focuses on the
> process of change and political decision-making. It is not simply
> community volunteerism, which may play a role, but is not the specific
> focus.
>
> Take care,
> Bill
>
> On Aug 17, 2007, at 11:09 AM, Lynn Saxton wrote:
>
>> Wow, great ideas, Jim! I will be working with a much smaller populace
>> - about 20-odd students for half a year in each course (PIG and Econ).
>> I would love any guidelines you have that I could possibly adapt to
>> this smaller group. I very much like the "Citizenship Council" idea
>> as I was planning to incorporate community service somehow into my
>> class. This way, the impetus is not coming from me but from the
>> students themselves - terrific.
>>
>> Jim, Bill, Elyse,
>> Have any of you every tried the "Fantasy Congress" with your kids?
>> You can access it online at fantasycongress.com. I think it would be
>> a great draw, especially for boys who might have tried fantasy
>> football, but I don't really know anything about how fantasy football
>> works so I'm at a disadvantage here. Any ideas?
>>
>> Lynn
>>
>>>>> "Jim Malanowski" <jim.malanowski@morgan.k12.ga.us> 08/16/07 4:48 PM
>>>>>>>>
>> Lynn,
>>
>> We take a select group of students to the Georgia Youth Assembly each
>> November. It's a statewide mock legislature sponsored by the YMCA.
>> It
>> attracts anywhere from 450-650 students from around the state.
>> Students
>> submit bills and the 60 best bills are put in a "Bill Book" that is
>> the
>> foundation for committee meetings and student debate in the Georgia
>> Senate and House chambers. It's a real high for the kids that go.
>>
>> Last year, my teaching colleague invited me to participate in a
>> "Congress" that was a MCHS version of GYA for all our sophomores. She
>> had done it for the previous four years with her classes. We didn't
>> elect a Governor or Supreme Court like they do at GYA, but all of our
>> sophomores (around 280 in all) were divided into "Conservative" and
>> "Liberal" parties. The kids dress up (they love it!) and believe it or
>> not the vast majority spend two solid days debating bills. Some of
>> the
>> kids who had no interest in Citizenship "found themselves" in the
>> process when they discovered how passionately they felt about some
>> issues. We used it as a "sales point" for their personal involvement
>> and activism in our democracy.
>>
>> Admittedly, it takes a whole bunch of prep, but we both felt like it
>> was
>> worth it.
>>
>> In the past (I've been at it 36 years!), I have organized students in
>> focused community service projects and given them extra credit for
>> their
>> participation. We've done everything from "bike hikes" to encourage
>> people to conserve energy, to trash pick-ups in a six-block radius
>> around school, to collecting for Disabled American Veterans.
>>
>> The events are planned by a "Citizenship Council" made up of
>> representatives that are selected by each of my classes. We meet once
>> a
>> month and they bring concerns and agenda items (things like seating
>> charts, suggestions for class activities, and eating food in the
>> classroom). It turns into a great microcosm of our "real"
>> representative government in the U.S. I'm the Executive Branch so I
>> can
>> veto their decisions...and they can override my veto. The principal
>> is
>> the Judiciary and can overrule anything that flies in the face of
>> school
>> rules.
>>
>> In my Econ classes, I have kids do a "Stock Scavenger Hunt" to
>> introduce
>> them to the basics of stocks, then some play The Stock Market Game. I
>> also run an Investment Club during scheduled club times. We use it as
>> a
>> recruiting time. As a matter of fact, I have to go right now to prep
>> for a Club Fair that the kids will attend tomorrow during lunch.
>>
>> Well, I guess those are the highlights of what I do. Let me know if I
>> can fill in any blanks.
>>
>> Jim
>>
>> Jim Malanowski
>> Morgan County High School
>> 1231 College Drive
>> Madison, GA 30650
>> (E) jim.malanowski@morgan.k12.ga.us
>> (S) 706-342-2336
>> (C) 706-474-9405
>> (H) 706-342-7672
>>
>> In preparing for battle I have always found that plans are useless,
>> but
>> planning is indispensable.
>> - Dwight D. Eisenhower
>>
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: channel-talkcivics-bounces@learner.org
>> [mailto:channel-talkcivics-bounces@learner.org] On Behalf Of Lynn
>> Saxton
>> Sent: Thursday, August 16, 2007 1:36 PM
>> To: channel-talkcivics@learner.org
>> Subject: Re: [Channel-talkcivics] Making Civics Real
>>
>> Jim,
>> I'd love any suggestions!
>> Lynn
>>
>>>>> "Jim Malanowski" <jim.malanowski@morgan.k12.ga.us> 08/15/07 4:33 PM
>>>>>
>> Lynn,
>>
>>
>>
>> I'd be glad to talk with you, but I don't know how "regular" I'll be.
>> I've not done any Annenberg work like you're doing, but will gladly
>> share what I'm doing in Madison, Georgia to try to make "Citizenship"
>> real for sophomores. I've taught it twice and will be teaching it
>> again
>> in the spring.
>>
>>
>>
>> Jim
>>
>>
>>
>> Jim Malanowski
>>
>>
>>
>> In preparing for battle I have always found that plans are useless,
>> but
>> planning is indispensable.
>> - Dwight D. Eisenhower
>> <http://www.quotationspage.com/quote/36892.html>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> _______________________________________________
>> Channel-talkcivics mailing list
>> Channel-talkcivics@learner.org
>> http://www.learner.org/mailman/listinfo/channel-talkcivics
>>
>> You may un-subscribe from this email list at any time by using the
>> online form at the above URL. If you have difficulty using this form,
>> please send email to Channel-talkcivics-admin@learner.org and our
>> mailing list administrator will assist you. Our privacy policy is
>> posted
>> online at: http://www.learner.org/about/privacy_policy.html
>>
>> _______________________________________________
>> Channel-talkcivics mailing list
>> Channel-talkcivics@learner.org
>> http://www.learner.org/mailman/listinfo/channel-talkcivics
>>
>> You may un-subscribe from this email list at any time by using the
>> online form at the above URL. If you have difficulty using this form,
>> please send email to Channel-talkcivics-admin@learner.org and our
>> mailing list administrator will assist you. Our privacy policy is
>> posted online at: http://www.learner.org/about/privacy_policy.html
>>
>>
>> _______________________________________________
>> Channel-talkcivics mailing list
>> Channel-talkcivics@learner.org
>> http://www.learner.org/mailman/listinfo/channel-talkcivics
>>
>> You may un-subscribe from this email list at any time by using the
>> online form at the above URL. If you have difficulty using this form,
>> please send email to Channel-talkcivics-admin@learner.org and our
>> mailing list administrator will assist you. Our privacy policy is
>> posted online at: http://www.learner.org/about/privacy_policy.html
>>
>
> _______________________________________________
> Channel-talkcivics mailing list
> Channel-talkcivics@learner.org
> http://www.learner.org/mailman/listinfo/channel-talkcivics
>
> You may un-subscribe from this email list at any time by using the
> online form at the above URL. If you have difficulty using this form,
> please send email to Channel-talkcivics-admin@learner.org and our
> mailing list administrator will assist you. Our privacy policy is
> posted online at: http://www.learner.org/about/privacy_policy.html
>
>
> _______________________________________________
> Channel-talkcivics mailing list
> Channel-talkcivics@learner.org
> http://www.learner.org/mailman/listinfo/channel-talkcivics
>
> You may un-subscribe from this email list at any time by using the
> online form at the above URL. If you have difficulty using this form,
> please send email to Channel-talkcivics-admin@learner.org and our
> mailing list administrator will assist you. Our privacy policy is
> posted online at: http://www.learner.org/about/privacy_policy.html
>

_______________________________________________
Channel-talkcivics mailing list
Channel-talkcivics@learner.org
http://www.learner.org/mailman/listinfo/channel-talkcivics

You may un-subscribe from this email list at any time by using the online form at the above URL. If you have difficulty using this form, please send email to Channel-talkcivics-admin@learner.org and our mailing list administrator will assist you. Our privacy policy is posted online at: http://www.learner.org/about/privacy_policy.html
Received on Mon Aug 20 13:55:41 2007

Back to the Top


© Annenberg Foundation 2014. All rights reserved. Legal Policy