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  • 2016 Curriculum Units Volume III
The Citizenship Complex: Why the Vote Matters in the Race for Freedom and Equality for All
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Not all people are born equal or free but there is an expectation of both when you are a citizen of the United States. Our struggles to earn the base level of representation are quickly forgotten as we look for another group to demonize. In my unit we will discover why George Washington was ahead of his time with his warning about "factions" and how their existence makes freedom and equality harder to bridge. As we trek through time highlighting issues such as the abolition of slavery, support for women's suffrage, and the challenges that face Asian and LGBTQIA communities my hope is that student understand the sacrifices made to be accepted and to earn the right to vote but more importantly the difficulty in being welcomed into American society.

The “Citizenship Complex” is the process by which groups gain full inclusion. To understand it, one must look to the intersection of law, citizenship and the Constitution. The unit aims to provide a more complex history of our nation, to tell a more earnest story of how the American identity became a mosaic of human struggle, and to offer a more robust and enlightening study of these issues so that as students recognize the power of citizenship they will take a more hopeful view of what our nation will look like in the future. By engaging in the sophisticated discussions of the past, identifying why some groups supported each other and scapegoated others, and learning about the importance of supporting efforts at inclusion, our students should become more informed, open-minded, and ready for the globalized world of the 21 st Century.

The unit will focus on four groups that have experienced the “Citizenship Complex”: African-American slaves, women, Asian immigrants, and the LGBTQIA community. By comparing these groups over time, we will really be able to unearth the cycles behind the Citizenship Complex and understand that American citizenship means at different times in our country’s history.

Subject:
U.S. History
Social Science
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
Unit of Study
Provider:
Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute
Provider Set:
2016 Curriculum Units Volume III
Date Added:
08/01/2016
Citizenship and Identity through the Lens of a Presidential Campaign
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The unit will teach elements of civics and democracy through the lens of the Presidential election. Students will be asked to research, read, and write about various aspects of civics and democracy, using a wide array of multimedia resources that will include (but not be limited to) literature, music, visual arts, and technology. The goal of the unit is to help students understand the importance of voting and participation while building their knowledge of the election system. The unit will encourage your students to think about government in a new way and connect this remarkable election to their day to day lives. While this unit will be taught during the first marking period, the unit will work at any point throughout the next few years. It is a Social Studies based unit designed for middle school students, primarily in the sixth grade, but can be modified and adapted to fit high school curriculum, grades nine through twelve.

Subject:
English Language Arts
U.S. History
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
Unit of Study
Provider:
Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute
Provider Set:
2016 Curriculum Units Volume III
Date Added:
08/01/2016
Citizenship and its Ability to Change Lives
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This curriculum unit focuses on children as citizens, and how they can claim ownership of their citizenship. Overall the unit works its way through the rights that children have as citizens and how they can use them to their advantage. It starts with what it means to them to be citizens, two specific rights that they have, and finally how they will use those rights to better their lives. The two rights that we discuss in this unit are education and voting. Those rights are the focus of this unit because I believe that they are the most important to young children and that they will benefit them the most in the long term. Education will provide the foundation for all of their learning throughout their lives, and voting is something that education prepares them for and will later in life affect their community and potentially the nation. I also believe that having an understanding of how voting actually impacts this country could potentially interest them in being active politically in the future.

Subject:
U.S. History
Social Science
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
Unit of Study
Provider:
Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute
Provider Set:
2016 Curriculum Units Volume III
Date Added:
08/01/2016
Democracy and Citizenship: The Complex Case of Puerto Rico
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The unit focuses on the struggles for self-identity and self-determination that continue to be problematic even a century after Puerto Rico’s inclusion in the United States’ territory. As a teacher of Spanish and Latin American culture, I find it very appealing that my Puerto Rican heritage students are aware of their roots and I have tried to bring that perception into the unit using a variety of lesson plans to help students understand the political status of Puerto Rico and their rights as citizens of the U.S. In this unit students will be exposed to various topics in the history of the Caribbean islands but with a focus on Puerto Rico. Students will be able to contrast the different historical epochs and their political implications. Finally, using the research as a guide, students will able to evaluate how the outcome of the Spanish-American War changed Puerto Rico’s political status from Spain’s colony to a U.S. territory. After exploring what being a Commonwealth meant for the people of Puerto Rico, they will be able to explain Puerto Rico’s “dual” citizenship and how it affects the Island’s national identity and culture.

Subject:
Languages
U.S. History
World History
Social Science
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
Unit of Study
Provider:
Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute
Provider Set:
2016 Curriculum Units Volume III
Date Added:
08/01/2016
Know Your Rights: Citizenship, Surveillance and Democracy in Post 9/11 America
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This unit focuses on the surveillance culture and lost liberties in post 9/11 America and in the wake of hurricane Katrina. An increasing number of my students display interests in social justice and activism, two areas that should be at the heart of “Citizenship, Identity, and Democracy.” Initial research questions revolve around surveillance culture (SC): is today’s SC a byproduct of the post-9/11 era or a carryover from the Cold War? How much further back in time do its roots go?

What rights and privileges are guaranteed to citizens under the constitution? If times of ‘emergency’ require a suspension, a limitation, or alteration of these rights and privileges, how do we know what an “emergency” is during a period in which we wage wars on drugs as well as terror, and in which the “War on Terror” has lasted for more than a decade? Does the requirement need amending in times of seemingly endless conflict/war, or is a state of emergency temporary by definition?

Subject:
Visual Arts
English Language Arts
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
Unit of Study
Provider:
Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute
Provider Set:
2016 Curriculum Units Volume III
Date Added:
08/01/2016
The Price of Freedom
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History is a challenging subject to impart to students, especially 7 and 8 year olds. As with all subjects, showing a connection to their daily lives ensures its relevance and an enduring understanding. Students have some sense of their basic rights, but they do not know how these rights came to be and how they differ for noncitizens and those outside the United States.

The aim of this unit is to teach students how our constitutional rights evolved and why they are salient today. It’s divided into sections to ensure this complex topic can be presented at an elementary level. It will provide the students with an overview of the Constitution of the United States with a focus on the rights and privileges of citizens that will be most intuitive to children (1 st , 13 th , 14 th ,15 th , and 19 th ). Activities include producing a narrative writing, a research booklet, a dialogical notebook, and a take-action choice piece with an eye to promoting critical thinking about historical change. Upon completion, students will have a better understanding of their rights and responsibilities as citizens, and how they can contribute to the betterment of this country.

Subject:
English Language Arts
Social Science
Material Type:
Lesson Plan
Unit of Study
Provider:
Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute
Provider Set:
2016 Curriculum Units Volume III
Date Added:
08/01/2016