A Civic point of view

By Paul Silli

What does it mean to you to be an American?

According to society_culture.com, a gallop poll showed that 83 percent of teachers think the United States is a “unique country that stands for something special in our world.’” The poll also showed 82 percent think it is most important for high school students to “revere and appreciate” our country, but also believe they should learn about its shortcomings.”  America is wondrous — but like all countries it is imperfect. Offering your learners the opportunity to have open debates where they feel safe to voice their opinions is essential. We should allow our students to explore social issues that directly affect their lives…

Civics classes should cover our country’s history, culture, political system, economics and government structure. Students need this knowledge so they can address current issues that affect them and the world. The trick is to teach your students “How to think,” while avoiding teaching them “What to think.” Open discussions and group collaborations where students share ideas with peers is crucial.

Teaching about how to be a good citizen is a vital part of civics as well. In fact, lessons on good citizenship will teach students first-hand how to be productive in society — and to care about others and the environment. Performing work that builds character and demonstrates respect are imperative parts of civic education.  Activities that have students do community service, participate in elections and work with charity organizations present lessons that they will carry into adulthood.

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One Response to “A Civic point of view”

  1. Candice Mercha Says:

    I am a civics teacher in New Haven. I love student debates that involve international laws. Thanks for the overview.


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