The Rendell Center has developed monthly themes designed to build basic civic knowledge, promote civic engagement, and provide practice in democratic deliberation. Each month offers an experiential learning opportunity for K-12 students to examine and discuss a new civics topic, with questions and activities designed to help them better understand the concept.
Grade 9-12 Civilian Leadership & the Military: The history and importance of a civilian-led military in America
The purpose of this lesson to assist student understanding of why the American Constitution places ultimate authority of the military in the hands of civilians rather than military leaders. Students should appreciate the historical uniqueness of the American military as an extension of constitutional principles in which the people always have the last word.
Grade 9-12 The Dynamics of War Powers
This three-part lesson asks students to think critically about the nature of the War Powers identified by the Constitution. Beginning with the historical foundations of the War Powers as written in the Constitution, students will explore why the Founders identified the War Powers as they did, using primary sources to back up their arguments. Students will then consider how War Powers have changed over time, evaluating the evolving dynamic of powers between the three branches of government.
Policies on Guns
Reading and discussion on federal gun policies and proposals, their pros and cons, and the Second Amendment. In a class activity students debate the merits of different gun policies.
The History of Memorial Day
This lesson takes a closer look at the history of Memorial Day by examining World War I, World War II, and the Vietnam War and their connections to this civic holiday.
Memorial Day Lesson Plans & Resources
Find new ways to discover the meaning of Memorial Day with students using the free K-12 resources in this curated collection from Share My Lesson. The lessons and activities honor military men and women who died while on duty and explore the wars they served in, as well as the impact on their families and our country.