Policy Studies Teacher Resources

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Students examine the problems associated with gender based and race based education. In groups, they research the history of education and the laws that have changed education and impacted lives. They brainstorm a list of the positives and negatives of each concept and develop a plan in which separate but equal could be implemented as a role play activity.
Ninth graders examine the relationship between energy and society. In groups, they define energy sources as renewable or conventional and research how each method contributes to the world's energy. They write about how the patterns of energy usage differ throughout the world. Using the internet, they research the organizations that address energy policies and develop their own policy to meet the needs of different societies.
Students read and discuss the 1979 occupation of the American Embassy in Iran. They research the nations that are believed to currently pose a threat of terrorism toward the United States and speculate on ways in which these nations' conflicts with the United States could be solved through non-violent means.
Students write about and discuss Presidential duties. They study the two competing foreign policy camps in the Bush administration by reading and discussing the article "Bush Team's Counsel Is Divided on Foreign Policy." In groups, students research the recent history of a country and the United States' relations with it. Students create and present a chart of group findings. Finally, they create a scrapbook of President Bush's foreign policy.
Students examine the international conflicts that might have caused the terrorist attacks of 9/11. In groups, they research the similarities and differences between the three major religions and how they connect to 9/11. To end the lesson, they review public opinion surveys on the attacks and compare this attack to others in history.
Students compare and contrast juvenile and adult courts in the United States. In this judicial system lesson, students read and discuss articles and statistics in order to determine why juveniles may be tried as adults and examine the factors that dictate whether a juvenile goes to adult court.
Students compare and contrast renewable and conventional energy sources. In this energy lesson plan, students research about conventional fuel and present a persuasive argument about their stand on the issue.
Students identify, summarize and present facts about cultural, educational and political inequalities of Reconstruction, explain hidden codes of slave spirituals and their importance in slaves' communication, and create poetry based on feelings.
Students investigate facts about the war in Korea in the 1950's and attempt to classify American foreign policy as a triumph or a failure. Why the U.S. became involved and the unpopularity of the war in America forms the focus of this lesson.
Students examine the effects of an urban setting on the development of male adolescence. After watching a film, they identify the problems in the relationship of the characters. They discuss the impact of becoming a teenage father and role play the role in different scenerios. To end the lesson, they watch a video on the changes they should except physically and mentally.
Though dated with references to the Bush Administration, this instructional activity would be a good way to discuss current issues, particularly gun control. Using an article from The New York Times (linked to this instructional activity), students answer discussion questions about gun control. They are divided into four groups to research different standpoints on gun control, including the Executive Office, Congress, Gun Control Opponents, and Gun Control Advocates. Extension activities are included.
Students discover details about Japanese Internment. In this World War II lesson, students analyze images and documents related to the movement of Japanese-Americans to West coast internment camps in the wake of the Pearl Harbor attacks. Students write essays about their impressions of the lesson.
High schoolers examine religious diversity issues. In this current events lesson, students read the provided articles "Sacred Ground or Bridging a Cultural Divide?" "Multiple Views of the Proposed Muslim Center," and "Protests, a Bonfire, and a Physical Attack." High schoolers respond to discussion questions that accompany the articles.
Seventh graders discuss the issues of isolation and deportation as they are related to the Holocaust. After reading a brief passage about deportation and confinement in a concentration camp, 7th graders discuss the feelings involved in being isolated from family and friends. Reading and test materials are included.
Learners consider the role of women in the food industry. In this gender exploitation lesson, students work in groups to examine unfair labor practices. Learners watch a video and write a fictional letter from a female laborer. This lesson focuses on the treatment of female agricultural workers.
Eleventh graders explore the definition of 'Manifest Destiny' and its importance to Westward Expansion.  In this U.S. History lesson, 11th graders work in small groups to write an essay that explains 'Manifest Destiny.'
The National Broadband Plan, an effort to assure that every school, library, hospital, and home in the US would have high-speed Internet access, is the focus of a unit that examines the value and implications of such a plan. Groups look at the influence of the Internet on populist and political movements, investigate issues, and create presentations.
Students discuss what they know about the abuse of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib. They research policy memos and assess their influence on military personnel. They identify the Geneva Conventions rule on the treatment of prisoners as well.
Students examine Afghanistan's contemporary history. In this global issues lesson, students research print and Internet sources about the Taliban and their control of the nation. Students share their findings with their classmates.
Students design a train route using a topographical map. In this historical and spatial thinking lesson plan, students must plan a route through the Sierra Nevada mountains that a train could physically travel. Links to printable student instructions and topographic maps are included.

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