16-13 Segment 1: The Political Classroom: Teaching Civics


Synopsis: Civics classes in many grade schools and high schools aren’t the same as they were 20 years ago, when teachers lectured on “how a bill becomes a law” to a roomful of bored students. These days, kids are more likely to discuss and debate some of the most pressing issues of the day. We talk to two educators about how some schools are teaching students how to debate correctly, how discussion of hot topics can foster understanding of diverse points of view, and the long-term benefits for students who engage in thoughtful, civil, debate.

Host: Gary Price. Guests: Diana E. Hess, Dean of the School of Education, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Paula McAvoy, Program Director for the Centers for Ethics & Education, University of Wisconsin-Madison. Both guests are co-authors of the book, The Political Classroom: Evidence and ethics in democratic education.

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click here for the transcript