Of all the projects I do in 8th Grade History and Government I think this is the most essential. In this project, students choose a problem: could be in the school, city, state, etc. Then students research why it is a problem, decide on a solution the problem, develop a presentation, and then present it to someone who has the power to do something about the problem. In the past, my students have presented to the principal. school superintendent, mayor, and state representative and senator. This project can be done 4th-12th grade or even college. All materials to do the project are included. I usually take 3 weeks to do the project, but it could be shortened or done once a week throughout the semester or year. This is a cross-curricular project that can really engage students. Contact me if you have any questions.
Project Citizen Outline:
1. Introduce Project Citizen: PowerPoint - Day 1
2. Public Policy or Not? That is the question handout: Day 1
3. Public Policy Worksheet: Day 2:
4. Public Policy Quiz: Day 3
5. What is the problem? Handout: Look at newspapers, online sources…look for problems – Day 3
6. Discuss problems students bring to class…google docs discussion. Day 3
7. Vote for problem for class to research. Maybe have 2 or more groups tackle different problems. Day 3
8. Project Citizen Problem Research Handout: Research problem…gather evidence, statistics, etc. Why is it a problem? Potential Solutions? Day 4, 5, 6
9. Share information….Google Docs Day 7
10. Solutions: Groups of 4: Come up with 2 solutions with specifics….each groups narrows down to one solution and presents to class. Day 7-8
11. Class votes on one solution: Day 8
12. Action plan: identify at least 4 steps or ideas to get solution passed into law: Groups of 3-4 come up with ideas. Examples of how this is done. Day 9
13. Group summaries assignment and rubric.
14. Work on group summaries PowerPoint: Show examples from previous classes. Day 10-11
15. Contact lawmakers, principals, or whoever has the power to do something about the problem.
16. Practice/Present PowerPoint: Day 12
17. Reflection Day Writing Assignment: Day 13-14