Project Vote Smart is a wonderful website for any civic or government teacher. The website is designed to be practical informative, and useful when teaching about Congress, political parties, campaign finance, the Constitution, elections, state government and much more. There are lessons, interactive activities, and so many other resources.
The Voter’s Self-Defense System
Every candidate and elected official from President to local government can be easily and instantly accessed through the Voter’s Self-Defense System:
- Voting Records – Project Vote Smart digests key legislation in Congress and all 50 states into easy-to-understand summaries, making it easy to compare what your representatives said during the campaign with how they actually voted on the record.
- Biographical & Contact InformationBiographical & Contact Information — From their previous professions, education, family life, and organizational memberships, to their latest e-mail address; we gather it all.
- Issue Positions (Political Courage Test) – We test thousands of candidates for President, Congress, Governor and State Legislature with our Political Courage Test. The Test accurately measures candidates’ willingness to provide voters with their positions on the issues they will most likely face if elected.
- Interest Group Ratings– See how over 150 competing special interest groups evaluate your representatives. Despite their bias, special interest group ratings can help indicate where an incumbent has stood on a particular set of issues.
- Public Statements – Vote Smart is constantly collecting speeches and public comments made by the president, governors, and congressional representatives. Just type in a word, say; ‘immigration’ and all public utterances containing the word ‘immigration’ will appear. Compare what they said while campaigning in California a few years ago to what they are saying now in New Hampshire.
- Campaign FinancesCampaign Finances — How much money did your representatives raise and from whom?
Share My Lesson is an interesting resource for any educator to collaborate, connect, and share with our teachers. It is a FREE website that gives teachers access to teaching resources such as worksheets, learning materials, lesson ideas, activiities, and lesson plans. The lessons are divided by grade level, subject, and unit.
Start using the site today with your TES login. Simply enter your TES username and password and then accept the Share My Lesson terms. Do so before 31 July and you’ll be entered automatically into a prize draw to win the new iPad!*
The website also connects teachers to an online community to build your PLC. Share My Lesson was developed by the American Federation of Teachers and TES Connect, the largest network of teachers in the world. Check it out today and improve your teaching repertoire!
As a US educator Share My Lesson offers you:
- A bank of more than 225,000 free teaching resources all mapped to grade, subject and topic from kindergarten through grade 12
- Advice and inspiration from your colleagues across the US
- The ability to share with other teachers the resources that have worked wonders for your students
- Resources that have been rated and reviewed by your fellow educators
- A wealth of great content and videos from our many partners, which include theTeaching Channel, Steve Spangler Science and Green. TV
- Materials to help you implement the Common Core State Standards, plus the latest news about the Common Core and our favorite Common Core-related content from around the web
- A Resource Calendar to give you ideas and activities for hot topics and upcoming events
- Resources for special populations that offer support for English language learners, students with disabilities and gifted and talented students
I attended the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History on 9/11 and American Memory. The seminar was absolutely amazing! We learned from experts about how the United States and the world have dealt with tragedy and loss with events such as the Civil War, Pearl Harbor, the Holocaust, Vietnam, and 9/11. We worked with the amazing team of 9/11 memorial experts who are involved in the planning of the 9/11 Memorial Museum, Fire Chief and 9/11 survivor Jay Jonas, and experts in the field of memory such as the seminar leader David Blight.
Our seminar took a personal tour of the 9/11 museum that is NOT open to the public. Even though it is still under construction, we could instantly observe the beauty, sacredness, and careful planning involved in creating the museum. I am so impressed with the planning and extensive collection the 9/11 historic site, website, and museum will offer to visitors and generations to honor the victims of September 11th, 2001.
9/11/01 Online Resources
The 9/11 memorial has a wonderful collection of online resources for teachers to educate our students about September 11th, 2001. The website has an extensive collection of multimedia orientated resources such as an interactive timeline, audio, webcasts, video, images, primary documents, and essential artifacts and collections. Each lesson is tied to the Common Core Standards and based on the 9/11 collections that can be used throughout the school year and across all subjects and divided into different themes.
Gilder Lehrman K–12 EDUCATOR PROGRAMS
Gilder Lehrman ONLINE RESOURCES
- Online Exhibitions on important topics including the Freedom Riders of the Civil Rights Movement, and Battle Lines: Letters from America’s Wars up to the First Persian Gulf War.
- Historians’ Podcasts including small video clips on essential questions
- History by Era, an online resource organized chronologically with essays by leading historians, a timeline, primary source documents for classroom use, multimedia, lesson plans, activities, and more.
- Primary Sources from the Gilder Lehrman Collection
- Traveling Exhibitions for Schools and Libraries
I recently discovered the Google World Wonders Project which is a website that brings historical sites online. The website is very interesting and educational because it uses Google’s Street View technology, 3D modelling, photos, videos and information to deliver an interesting medium to go on a virtual field trip. You and your students can truly explore the world from your classroom!
There are many interesting historical locations available to explore on the site, including the Palace of Versailles, the Historic Centre of Cordoba, Stonehenge and Hiroshima. I recently explored Independence Hall and was amazed at the collection of resources: videos, google maps, images, and in depth information about the location. I can’t think of a better way to learn about history, other than actually visiting the historic site!
Google also offers free, easy-to-use, and downloadable history resources which are designed in support and engage students in the study of history. The resources are clear, very well organized and FREE. I already found myself bookmarking specific historical sites to use for next school year. Check it out today!
I learned about Deliberation Lessons at the NCSS Conference Presentation in Washington D.C. on December 2nd, 2011. The workshop was really interesting and provided me with a plethora of new resources to engage students in the 21st century classroom. The website contains primary documents about controversial issues in our society, which can engage students in the content and create meaningful classroom discussions. Regardless of what you teach these materials and the style of instruction is powerful. For more information visit: Deliberation in a Democracy in the Americas
Deliberation is the focused exchange of ideas and the analysis of multiple views with the aim of making a personal decision and finding areas of agreement within a group. Why Are We Deliberating? People must be able and willing to express and exchange ideas among themselves, with community leaders, and with their representatives in government. People and public officials in a democracy need skills and opportunities to engage in civil public discussion of controversial issues in order to make informed policy decisions. Deliberation requires keeping an open mind, as this skill enables people to reconsider a decision based on new information or changing circumstances.
Next year I plan on supplementing my outdated textbook with some online resources. I discovered this website called ushistory.org, which has so many wonderful resources. I plan on using this online US Government website for my AP government class and supplementing it with a reader, primary documents, and plenty of articles. I think it will be a lot more practical in the 21st century.
Wow this is one of the most moving political advertisement’s I have seen in a very long time. This is a political ad for the 2012 presidential race – in this case – by Tim Pawlenty who used to be the governor of Minnesota. It goes with his book, Courage to Stand. Even though he will not will the Republican nomination he sure makes a good video that hits every American Ideal and value.
It hits us with every American value. I plan to use this in the classroom when I talk about American values. I may have them try to guess what American values they “see” in this presidential advertisement.