On President's Day we began thinking about how to teach students to be active and engaged citizens. We came up with an idea that could lead to powerful learning experiences for our students and potentially create positive political change. Our goal is to draw national attention to the brilliant ideas and passion of our nation's youth and to prove to students that our democracy is alive and well for those who choose to participate.
We have noticed that although we live in a democratic society that invites us to openly enact our values through speech and assembly, most of us do not take full advantage of these civil rights. Many of us choose not to vote in elections, and most of us are so discouraged by what we perceive as insurmountable political inertia that we do not even attempt to challenge the status quo. When we, as adults and teachers, fail to engage in democracy, we set a dangerous precedent. We teach our students that their voices do not matter, that no one is listening. Apathy is an insidious foe, especially in the adolescent years. It takes more than mere admonishment to move a teenager to act--politically or otherwise. Not only must we set an example of civic action for our students but involve them in the process as well.
On March 15, 2012 students from across the nation will come together in a National Day of Civic Action to embrace democracy. This site will serve as a forum for students to write letters to President Obama regarding issues they care about.
Please visit our How To Participate page for instructions on posting student letters.