A few ways to keep students engaged with the midterm elections include tracking public opinion polling in your state, keeping track of national trends, and monitoring important Senate, House, and gubernatorial races. Begin by visiting the following links:
Some questions you might discuss with your students include:
- What are the most competitive races in our state?
- What issues seem to be driving the campaigns in our state? What issues do we hear discussed in television and radio advertisements or on the local news?
- What do you hope will be the outcome of the congressional elections? Why?
For our more detailed overview, along with additional discussion questions, see our guide to the 2018 Midterm Elections.
Image credit: Time.com – Frederic J. Brown–AFP/Getty Images
The 2018 midterm elections are upon us and control of Congress is at stake! For most people, the election will be less than 75 days away when the school year starts, and state primaries may already be over.
Preparing new voters
In the months leading up to Election Day, we will use this blog space to help educators teach the issues that candidates are debating, teach about democracy and voting, and place the 2018 election in context for students. In addition to connecting you to news stories, opinion pieces, and campaign videos, we will share our own resources as well as resources created by our partners in the Teaching for Democracy Alliance
We look forward to engaging with you, answering your questions, and hearing about your efforts to inform and inspire a new generation of voters!
Teaching the news is time consuming and complicated; by the time you are able to find and process important issues and identify how to teach them, they are old news. This site will be updated frequently with links to classroom-ready news items, relevant context, and suggested teaching activities and discussion questions.
Teaching Controversial Issues
We know from experience that students often struggle to make sense of the news and political debates, to identify the strengths and weaknesses of competing ideas and arguments, and to engage respectfully and thoughtfully in deliberation. It is easier than ever for people to find only the news they want and more difficult than ever to stay abreast of government decisions and other issues. Furthermore, the level of political polarization across the nation can make teaching political and social issues seem overwhelming. However, these challenges facing teachers and our democracy only make it more critical than ever to help students engage in meaningful political discussions in the classroom.
Our aim is to show how the political world is and can be a curriculum. We intend to explore the ways in which controversial public issues can connect to socialstudies, humanities, and literature curricula; to guide teachers as you translate real-world events into classroom content; and to offer insight for navigating sometimes thorny political discussions in the classroom. We hope that you leave feeling better prepared to guide your students as they navigate today’s most pressing public policy issues.
We hope that you find this site and our resources useful in engaging your students in meaningful debates and discussions. Please be in touch with us through this blog and through social media to help guide our work. We want this site to be as useful to teachers as possible.