by Matt Doran
Recent developments have raised questions about what kind of civic education we should have in the United States. Critics of the College Board's new AP US History Framework claimed the framework emphasized negative aspects of American History, and short-changed ideals like American exceptionalism. Others have decried the poor results on the NAEP Civics Test as a clear sign of civic illiteracy. On the other side, many educators viewed the events of Ferguson and the Black Lives Matter movement as opportunities to promote civic activism.
Should American History and civics classes emphasize civic activism or civic literacy? Most curricula and classrooms will include some of both, and the two emphases are not mutually exclusive. However, the model below helps us understand these two approaches, and evaluate which way the pendulum may be swinging at the national, state, local, and classroom level.
Consider the headlines below. What approach to civic education is emphasized?
by Matt Doran
Over the past several weeks, I have been crafting new assessment items around skills standards--credibility of sources, bias, stereotypes, claims, supporting evidence, etc. It strikes me that in the Internet and social media era, we need to update our thinking skills to address Internet legends, viral videos, and social media memes.
How do we wade through the multitude of spurious quotes, stories, and claims?
Remember the words of Lincoln...