Are you allowing political discussions at your holiday gatherings? Probably not.
Our society is losing the ability to have a civil civic conversation. And this is bleeding into our ability to discuss meaningful political issues, even with those we love.
My generation wants to change this. And we can, if we are given the tools to do so.
68% of middle school and high school students said they would benefit from an interactive presentation on civil civic conversation, using role-playing activities to show the art of conversation. This is something I wish I had experienced in my high school.
As a student, I often disagreed with my peers on political matters. Political topics were often avoided during conversations out of fear of disagreement and arguments arising. One day, I decided to invite one of my classmates (who was the polar opposite of me on every political issue) to sit with me at lunch to try to find common ground.
We found we agreed on 5%! Although it wasn’t much, we found that we both loved our country and wanted the best for the American people. And more importantly we were able to listen to each other calmly and present our beliefs in a non-emotional way. We took the time to listen to each other to understand, not just to respond.
With your generous support, we can teach America’s students
the art of civil, civic conversation.
62% of students said controversial issues should be discussed in the classroom. We are willing to talk about the meaningful issues facing our nation! But here’s the catch. 60% of educators said they are unwilling to bring up controversial issues in the classroom.
Not only are students not learning about the U.S. Constitution like they used to, they are not being allowed to discuss controversial issues in class. Therefore, they are not learning how the Constitution is relevant today.
This is where Constituting America, with your help, can make a difference! This year we spoke to over 80 classrooms and civic organizations, a 23% increase from last year! We spoke to students about the nonpartisan relevancy of the U.S. Constitution AND taught them how to incorporate constitutional values into civil, civic conversations.
In our first ever focus group and poll, made possible by a generous donor, Constituting America discovered the problems facing our students today:
● One high school senior mentioned that she felt unprepared for college by not speaking about or forming an opinion about specific issues in high school. The fact that her teachers did not express their opinions “set a precedent for students to not share their opinion, or be less willing to.”
● A high school junior mentioned that his teachers “[don’t] want to hear about it and say not to talk about it,” even if the topic is school appropriate.
There is a clear disconnect between students’ desire to interact with and become informed about both sides of controversial issues and the options provided to them by our school system.
With your generous support we will be adding a role-playing segment to our constitution education presentation.
We want to give students real life experience in applying their Constitutional knowledge to issues of the day. We will invite students to argue on both sides of issues, so their peers get the opportunity to hear both sides, teaching them how to listen to those with whom they disagree…civilly!
But we can’t execute our “Civil Civic Conversation” program without your generous support!
Will you make your best year-end gift to fund our 2019 programs, including our Civil Civic Conversation initiative?
Your tax deductible, year-end gift today will ensure that we start next year in a strong position to teach the Constitution through the many programs we offer. We thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your continued support of Constituting America.
Together, we can ensure that my generation is able to heal the partisan divide plaguing our nation, equipped with the tools in our great Constitution.
All my best,
PS – Your generous year-end donation will fund the many school speaking requests we already have for the spring semester, our upcoming summer Winner Mentor Trip, and our 90 Day Study on the importance of state sovereignty within our federal system. We thank you in advance for the best gift your budget will allow.