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Engage Student Voices Next School Year by Writing Letters to Next President

Engage Student Voices Next School Year by Writing Letters to Next President

Be sure to add this to your list of things to look into this summer as you're planning for the upcoming school year.

Hosted by the National Writing Project and KQED, Letters to the Next President 2.0 (L2P 2.0) is an initiative intended to engage student voice in the current presidential election.

While the volatile nature of the current political climate has made it hard for some teachers to discuss the election in the classroom (40 percent of teachers surveyed in April said they were hesitant to teach students about the election at all), L2P 2.0 provides a safe and fully supported platform for students to formulate and share their opinions about election issues.

Intended for students ages 13-18, teacher and National Writing Project employee Christina Cantrill said in a post on The Teaching Channel that L2P 2.0 allows educators to "create supportive contexts where youth can engage across their differences and discuss a diversity of topics together, bridging both traditional ideological divides as well as opening up their own thinking.”

Beginning in August and running until November, "letters2president.org opens as a publishing platform for youth to post written pieces, images, videos, and audio files that capture their voice on the election issues that matter to them,” Cantrill said.

"L2P 2.0 will focus on the content — the ideas — from the youth writers and will display them next to thousands of others around the U.S., highlighting the diversity of ideas and opinions.”

While L2P 2.0’s publishing platform won’t open until August, it is currently acting as a place for teachers to get resources to prep for teaching about the election come fall.

Teachers can find resources about the election, issues and writing arguments, and participating in civic conversations during the election season, according to L2P 2.0’s site.

Specific resources include letter to president modules, public forum debate lesson plans, a webinar on teaching controversial topics and much more. 

As politics dominate the news, students are inevitably hearing about it. Help them share their voice and hear the voices of others this school year by delving into these resources now.

Nicole Gorman, Senior Education World Contributor

7/12/2016

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