Current Issues

Classroom activities to engage students in learning about and discussing issues in the news

June 11, 2018
  Opening: Quick Picture Analysis   Show two pictures to the class.  The first photo is of a sit-in at a lunch counter in 1963. View it here:  https://www.wisconsinhistory.org/Records/Image/IM2381…
June 4, 2018
To The Teacher:   The online retail giant Amazon is currently in the process of choosing a city in which to build a second headquarters. Because the company promises to bring jobs to whatever…
May 19, 2018
  Gathering What is the racial makeup of your neighborhood?       Introduction Write this fact on the board: Black families have less than one-tenth the wealth of white families in the U.S…
May 10, 2018
What do we already know?   Project the image above, or the tweet below, on the board: https://twitter.com/ClimateCentral/status/992468921403019264 Or, write on the board: Atmospheric carbon…
May 1, 2018
To the Teacher: Americans have been having a ferocious debate over President Trump’s proposal for a “border wall.” But underlying this debate is a more fundamental question: Why do we have borders…
April 24, 2018
To the Teacher: At the end of 2017, the U.S. Department of Justice requested that the Census Bureau add a question to the 2020 census about the citizenship status of respondents. The issue…
April 24, 2018
Gathering Invite students to look at the following tweet.  What does it refer to?  What do students know about what happened at a Starbucks in Philadelphia on Thursday April 12, 2018?  What have…
April 11, 2018
Gathering: Word Web Write #ENOUGH or #NEVERAGAIN on the board or chart paper and circle it.  Invite students to share their associations with the hashtag.  If necessary, elicit that these hashtags…
April 10, 2018
Gathering / Opening Ceremony   Project the wordcloud below on the white board or print it out and distribute, or distribute the image on this handout.  It is made up of hashtags connected to the…
April 5, 2018
  To the Teacher: Following the school shooting in Parkland, Florida, on February 14, 2018, some commentators have called for increased security on school campuses, with proposals ranging from…