This provides teachers the materials and guidance for students to learn different perspectives on the issue of free speech, discuss them and listen to each other in a respectful and civil manner, and appreciate differences while finding common ground.
With news and materials from left, center and right sources plus a structured process for discussion, teachers, administrators and parents can be assured that multiple points of view are discussed and respected in a civil, beneficial manner.
☛ Teachers! Have you done the Relationships First component in your classroom yet? Consider starting with it to establish a solid foundation. ☚
Resources to Build your Own
First, students need to understand the issue better including viewpoints from across the political spectrum. Here are a variety of resources to include.
Free Speech Issues page on AllSides: Give your students a good understanding of the background. AllSides Issue pages provide background information, current news and opinions, think tanks and more.
Balanced Dictionary: Reveals how different people from across the political spectrum think and feel about the same term or issue.
AllSides Balanced Search: A search engine that quickly and easily shows multiple perspectives. Google and other search engines often only give you the most popular perspective, burying or leaving out alternative viewpoints.
As your students discover such diversity in perspective, you may want to look at our Media Bias section. Try having your students rate their own bias and rate the media bias of news sources and Think Tanks.
Next, you want the students to participate in a healthy, collaborative dialog
Participate in an Online Video Dialog:
Mismatch.org: Connect with students across the country with different backgrounds and political perspectives for a respectful video conversation.
Engage in conversations in person:
Living Room Conversations
Participate in an Online Text Dialog:
Share your opinions on these questions or request a new agree/disagree question be posted. Students are encouraged to backup their opinions with research.
Have a specific question for students to discuss online? Email us to start a new Classroom Dialog
★ This can be done as a single class or over several class periods. Extending the lesson will allow for more in depth understanding.★
Also see how this program complies with Common Core standards.
Collaboration: Students will discuss free speech while working in small groups (if a large class) or as an entire class.
Civil conversation and conflict resolution: Students will learn how to listen, understand and respect one another’s views, especially when there are differences of opinion and background.
Research and analysis: Students will have a deeper understanding of the different perspectives on illegal immigration, including their own, their classmates, and the country at large, through researching the topic across biases and discussing.
Homework prior to class:
Students will spend 20-30 min looking at the most recent news about Free Speech from different perspectives.