Have your students become world class news reporters and stay current on events with this monthly project!! This is one of my students' favorite assignments and they enjoy presenting their research to the class throughout the year. I tend to get too many request to do current events and have to limit them as progress through the curriculum. This assignment also astonishes parents, because their student becomes mini-experts on the specific topic that they choose. This project is successful because it allows students to choose a topic that interest them; however, it must relate to civics and be related to topics we have previously covered or are learning about currently.
As a result of this lesson students will learn the following skills:
• How to properly cite sources and about plagiarism.
• Practice and improve their public speaking skills.
• Summarization skills (literacy skills)
• How to identify important words.
• How to connect real world situations/events to what we are currently studying.
• How to differentiate between facts and opinions.
• Develop an educated opinion based upon facts.
• Explain the big picture (they why we care) which allows students to connect/relate to the topics we are currently studying
• Take ownership of their own learning!
This assignment includes 3 tiers of differentiated instruction. My higher level students are only given the first page of instructions, my average level students are given the chart template to organize their thoughts for their presentation, and my students who struggle are given the easier who, what, where, why, and how template.
This assignment could be adapted to fit any local, state, or national standards for social studies. This assignment could also work in a English/Language Arts classroom because of the literacy strategies it addresses.
Specifically it aligns with the Virginia SOL (Standards of learning), as well as Florida’s EOC Standards, and the Texas STAAR standards.
Several states require students to pass a Civics/Government social studies test to graduate from high school which include: Alabama, Maryland, Mississippi, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, South Carolina, Texas, and Virginia.
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