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Ashley's Story

Photo of Ashely and students from the Boonsboro High School State Championship We the People Team

I was always drawn to social studies, but found it challenging to connect the materials to student’s lives. Focusing on civics, and specifically adopting a curriculum that uses the issues surrounding our political system and how we govern, has given me a true purpose in my teaching. I was able to do this by implementing the Center for Civic Education program, We the People: The Citizen and the Constitution. Students dive deeply into the most controversial and confounding political questions of the founding period all the way up to challenges we might face in the future. Then, they prepare written testimony and present to judges via simulated congressional hearings. This program allows me to foster critical thinking skills, public speaking skills, research and writing skills, as well as advanced knowledge of the Constitution and our rights as individuals. A strong civics curriculum gives students excellent opportunities both in the classroom and beyond. Students participate in local election campaigns, assist with the polls on election days, and advocate for local issues. Ultimately, the value of civics education cannot be underestimated. It is vital that the students of today are provided with the education in order to be the active, engaged citizens of tomorrow.