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Issues/topics for advanced gov.


Social Studies  



Issues Assignment          Advanced Government and Politics


Possible topics:

  1. College loans


  1. Employment /the economy


  1. Gay rights and the government/ politics


  1. Immigration and citizenship (“Under the Same Moon”)


  1. The Presidential election


  1. Freedom and other shared beliefs of Americans


  1. Congressional oversight


  1. Federal budget issues


  1. Energy


     10. Race


Students may propose other topics.


Students may work in pairs and need to prepare a one-paragraph request to assume responsibility for one topic.  I will then assign the topic and the month (October through April) in which it will be presented.

This assignment is to be a student-led in-depth examination of each of these issues with an emphasis on the current situation. We will set aside half of one block period each cycle during a month for each pair.

Each student will be charged with maintaining a portfolio on each topic; this would contain news clippings, notes, and assignments made by the “pair of the month.”

Some ideas for presenting issues are movies, speakers, skits, panel discussions, debates, games, class artwork, or music.  All could be filmed using my flip camera and tripod.  Tie-ins to textbook material would be encouraged.


In addition to the power point presentations, students also incorporated discussions and informal debates into their projects.  Informative video clips were integrated into the power points along with a great deal of research and up-to-the minute news related to the “issue.”  Statistics, charts, graphs, court cases, pictures, comparative (from other countries) points of view, timelines, government policies, positions of political parties, and handouts of positions of presidential candidates on major issues were used.

Innovative elements:

1.     Students chose their own issues by writing a request for a certain issue.  I then matched the students to issues based on their reasons for selecting a topic.  This ensures interest in the project.

2.     Students inspired each other with the quality and care taken with their work.

3.     Knowledge of current issues was developed and incorporated into the curriculum with this assignment.  Students learned from each other.

4.     Students were encouraged to combine textbook information with current issues.

5.     Flexible deadlines allowed students to work at their own pace.  Students were given a choice of second or third quarter to present their research.




















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