Last Updated: Jan 23rd, 2011 - 06:37:27
| The Choices Program
By Sarah Lane
Feb 22, 2004, 07:19 PST
The Choices Program was established in 1988 as a national education program that seeks to engage students at the secondary level in consideration of international issues and contribute to a renewal of civic engagement among young people in the United States. Choices is founded on three core ideas:
With the start of a new school year comes the ever present pressure of meeting state standards and covering all designated areas of study, while at the same time trying to squeeze in the topic of current events. Post 9/11 curriculums include what is relevant in the news today, but teachers lack the extra time to teach students about the current state of the world around them. Most instructors do take the time to explain parallels between the past and present, but what about those with little or no extra time in their own schedules to create these types of lesson plans?
Since there is a website for just about everything one can dream up, there must be one for this purpose right? Correct! As usual, ClassBrain scours the Internet for the best resources for you to use in the classroom and the Choices Program fits the bill. Students will gain the insight to articulate their own views on international issues, and teachers will learn how to teach with the news and how to bring international public policy issues to life in their classrooms.
The Choices Program
- There is a growing need to strengthen the skills and habits of citizenship in order to contribute to the renewal of American democracy.
- We must do this in ways that contribute to our understandings of who we are as a nation and how we fit into the broader world.
- In a healthy democracy, public education has an inherent responsibility to contribute to this effort.
The Choices Program is divided into three areas online:
The Capitol Forum on Americas Future is an experiential civic education initiative designed to give high school students a voice in public consideration of current international issues. The program, run on a state-wide basis in participating states, involves students both within the social studies classroom and beyond the classroom at their state capitol.
The Choices Faculty Room provides information on new and revised curricular materials, upcoming professional development opportunities, ideas for making connections between published materials and current news, and a range of supplemental resources provided free of charge from the Choices web site.
Choices curriculum materials are used in a range of courses including U.S. history, world history, global studies, and government. Materials include extensive background readings and a role-play or simulation exercise that encourages students to apply their knowledge in an authentic setting.
So how do you get started? Simply go to www.choices.edu to begin integrating the present with the past.
Source: Watson Institute for International Studies at Brown University
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