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Kick-Off Constitution Day with Civic Learning Professional Development

Americans will celebrate Constitution Day on Sept. 17, the day in 1787 when delegates to the Constitutional Convention signed the document in Philadelphia. In addition to learning about the Constitution, the day presents the opportunity to discuss civics and what it means to be a citizen in a global society.

The San Diego County Office of Education (SDCOE) offers professional learning and networking opportunities to support educators' teaching practice in civic learning throughout the year. Whether you are starting elementary school students on their learning or engaging in deeper conversations with older students, SDCOE has professional development to support you.

“Engaging students in civic learning at all grade levels is important in order to develop an educated citizenry,” said Matt Hayes, SDCOE history-social science coordinator. “Our goal is to make it easier for teachers to connect with students and be able to have crucial conversations.”

Civic Learning Professional Development Opportunities

SDCOE will host a series of workshops focused on topics in civic learning. Each session will feature short, 30-minute online sessions that are free. Most sessions will be offered early in the morning then repeated in the afternoon. 

Introduction to the State Seal of Civic Engagement

School and district leaders learn about the state criteria for the Seal of Civic Engagement, see a model for implementation, and receive resources to begin their planning. 

California Democracy Schools

Dr. Michelle Herczog will provide an overview of the California Democracy Schools program and share resources and information about how schools can learn more. This initiative is designed to institutionalize civic learning in elementary, middle, or high schools. At the high school-level, California Democracy Schools prepares students to earn the State Seal of Civic Engagement. 

Developing Pathways to Civic Learning

School and district teams can learn about current initiatives focused on developing PK-12 civic learning pathways. They will explore the new State Seal of Civic Engagement and its implication for all grade levels. Participants will receive planning tools that can be used to guide the development of local civic learning plans.

Integrating Civic Learning into the History-Social Science Classroom

K-12 educators will use the California History Social Science Framework and the Roadmap to Educating for American Democracy to integrate civic learning in authentic ways into their curriculum.

Online Resources to Support Civic Learning

In the first of a two-part series, participants will be provided with an overview of the free online civic learning resources available from the National Constitution Center.

Online Resources to Support Civil Dialogue

In the second of the two-part series, participants will learn about resources to support civil dialogue available through the National Constitution Center.

Civil Discourse Community of Practice

The community of practice will be conducted through a combination of in-person and virtual meetings and is designed for secondary teachers who are already engaging their students in high level discussions. Participants will grow their ability to:

  • Think deeply about the role of discussion in education and in democracy
  • Synthesize current theory and scholarship on civic dialogue
  • Access practical tools and strategies
  • Grapple with tensions related to teaching controversial issues and difficult histories

Register to attend in-person on Oct. 5 and virtually on Nov. 16. 

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