What We’re Reading

Every few weeks, GC picks out a selection of articles that are relevant to our work and to the civics education space as a whole. We at GC love to expand our learning in every aspect of what we do, and we hope you enjoy our selections!

Think Students Won’t Consider Opposite Political Views? Here’s How 2 Universities Got Them to Try. Chronicle of Higher Education.
The article reports on work by Cairn University and the University of Pennsylvania to bring together students with diverse political viewpoints for discussions about issues on which they disagree. This work embodies one of the actions in GC’s Beyond the Ballot Toolkit: Engage in conversations with people who disagree with you.

Science’s Next Frontier? It’s Civic Engagement. Discover Magazine.
Recent surveys have identified a rapid decline in knowledge about and sympathy for scientists and scientific institutions. This has led the scientific community to realize an urgent need to reintroduce science to the public as a trusted, non-partisan civic actor, a collaborator that can help communities address their problems, and partners in a dialogue where each party brings its unique lived experiences to the table. This article discusses new efforts that are underway.

Yes, kids need more civics education — but they need to be taught civility at least as much. Washington Post.
In this column, an educator from Tuscon describes her work to create a school climate that fosters civility, and argues that the norms and structures that foster civility are necessary supplements to civics education.

Schools creating new structures to encourage student voice. Education Dive.
This article highlights efforts at several schools to engage students in making decisions about school structures and even curriculum. From collecting student opinion through surveys, to establishing formal “student voice committees,” schools are recognizing the value of students’ input and finding new and effective ways to act on it.