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Social Studies

General Civics Organizations
 
Bill of Rights Institute
The mission of the Bill of Rights Institute is to educate young people about the words and ideas of America's Founders, the liberties guaranteed in our Founding documents, and how our Founding principles affect and shape a free society.
 
Campaign for the Civic Mission of Schools
The Campaign for the Civic Mission Schools was created to increase the quality and quantity of civic learning in our schools, grades K-12. The Campaign works to bring about changes in state, local, and national policy that promote civic learning and implement the recommendations in the Civic Mission of Schools report.
 
Center for Civic Education
The mission of the Center for Civic Education is to promote an enlightened and responsible citizenry committed to democratic principles and actively engaged in the practice of democracy in the United States and other countries.
 
Center for Civic Renewal
The Center for Civic Renewal is located at Sweet Briar College. Founded in 1999, our mission is to foster effective citizen engagement through understanding of the American constitutional system.
 
The Center for the Constitution
The Center for the Constitution has been established to provide the nation's educators and opinion leaders with advanced educational opportunities and high-quality professional development.
 
Center for Democracy and Citizenship
We come from an activist heritage. Our philosophy was forged in the crucible of the American civic rights movement which etched the disarmingly simple fundamentals of democracy and public work:
•Each of us is democracy
•Democracy comes to life when we do its work
•Democracy wanes when we set its burdens aside
•When people do the work of democracy, the future can be better than the past.
Center for Politics
In order to strengthen American democracy, the Center for Politics promotes the value of politics and seeks to improve civic education and increase civic participation through comprehensive research, pragmatic analysis, and innovative educational programs.
 
Character Education & Civic Engagement Technical Assistance Center
CETAC Online's Resource Center features publications important to the fields of character education and civic engagement, practices and programs from Partnerships in Character Education Program grantees, and links and resources related to character education and civic engagement. Publications included will be those authored by the staff of CETAC and ED and other federal entities.
 
Choices
CHOICES for the 21st Century is an educational outreach program of the Watson Institute for International Studies at Brown University. Through its curricular resources, professional development programs, and special projects, CHOICES engages secondary level students in current and historical international issues and contributes to a renewal of civic engagement among young people in the United States.
 
Citizenship Matters
Citizenship Matters is produced by the Education Commission of the States (ECS). This bimonthly newsletter focuses on ECS' work in improving citizenship education in our nation's schools.
Civics Online: (Re) envisioning the Democratic Community
http://www.civics-online.org/
Civics Online is a collaborative, internet project working to provide teachers, students, and parents with a rich array of multi-media primary source materials, learning tools, and professional development resources to enhance current approaches to teaching civics in the classroom.
 
CiviConnections
CiviConnections is a three-year teacher grant program funded by the federal Corporation for National and Community Service and National Council for the Social Studies. From 2003-2006, CiviConnections will involve more than 297 teachers and 7,425 3rd-12th grade students nationwide in linking local history inquiry with community service-learning activities. A team of three teachers can apply for a $7,500 grant to cover their costs for attending a summer workshop, implementing the program during the fall of 2006, and attending the 2006 NCSS Annual Conference in Washington, D.C.
 
Civnet
CIVNET is an online resource and service for civic education practitioners (teachers, teacher trainers, curriculum designers), as well as scholars, policymakers, civic-minded journalists, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) promoting civic education all over the world.
 
Close Up
The Close Up Foundation is the nation’s largest nonprofit nonpartisan citizenship education organization. Since its founding in 1970, Close Up has worked to promote responsible and informed participation in the democratic process through a variety of educational programs.
 
Constitutional Rights Foundation
Constitutional Rights Foundation (CRF) is a non-profit, non-partisan, community-based organization dedicated to educating America's young people about the importance of civic participation in a democratic society.
 
The Dirksen Center
The Dirksen Congressional Center conducts programming in four areas: historical collections, research, education, and community service. elections, research, education, and community service.
 
National Alliance for Civic Education
NACE was launched in 2000 and now has more than 200 group and individual members committed to advancing civic knowledge and engagement. NACE believes the time has come to band together to ensure that the next generation of citizens understands and values democracy and participates in the ongoing work of building democracy in America.
 
National Center for Learning and Citizenship
The NCLC provides information about service-learning and citizenship education through publications and on the Web site. Click on the Publications button at the left for a comprehensive list of our printed resources, including a series of issue briefs that address critical service-learning issues. Most of our publications are in a format to download and print. Resources include case studies highlighting successful K-12 programs linking service with learning; research findings, studies and stories about the impact of service, service-learning and volunteerism on students, schools and communities.
 
The National Conference of State Legislatures
The National Conference of State Legislatures was founded in 1975 with the conviction that legislative service is one of democracy's worthiest pursuits. NCSL is a bipartisan organization that serves the legislators and staffs of the nation's 50 states, its commonwealths and territories. NCSL provides research, technical assistance and opportunities for policymakers to exchange ideas on the most pressing state issues. NCSL is an effective and respected advocate for the interests of state governments before Congress and federal agencies.
 
Public Agenda
For over a quarter of a century, Public Agenda has been providing unbiased and unparalleled research that bridges the gap between American leaders and what the public really thinks about issues ranging from education to foreign policy to immigration to religion and civility in American life.
 
Youth Leadership Initiative
We are a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization based at the University of Virginia Center for Politics. YLI is funded by the United States Congress, the Virginia General Assembly, and private donations.
 
Leadership Development Curriculum
The defined goals of the Leadership Development Curriculum are as follows: to develop in every K-12 student an awareness of his or her own leadership potential; to assist young people in developing essential leadership skills that enable them to act responsibly in all aspects of their lives; to develop citizens who possess the leadership abilities to meet present and future challenges in a global society; and to provide students with opportunities to learn and practice essential leadership skills within a learning community.
 
Civics Surveys and Data
American Political Science Association
Founded in 1903, American Political Science Association is the leading professional organization for the study of political science and serves more than 15,000 members in over 80 countries. With a range of programs and services for individuals, departments and institutions, APSA brings together political scientists from all fields of inquiry, regions, and occupational endeavors within and outside academe in order to expand awareness and understanding of politics.
 
The Center for Information & Research on Civic Learning and Engagement
Since 2001, CIRCLE has conducted, collected, and funded research on the civic and political participation of young Americans. CIRCLE is based in the University of Maryland's School of Public Policy and is funded by the Pew Charitable Trusts and Carnegie Corporation of New York.
 
NAEP Survey
In 1998, NAEP administered the latest civics assessment to approximately 22,000 students at grades 4, 8, and 12 in the nation. The national sample assessed 670 schools at grade 4, 697 schools at grade 8, and 566 schools at grade 12. The assessment measured students' knowledge of civics and American government.
 
The National Conference of State Legislatures Survey
The National Conference of State Legislatures is a bipartisan organization that serves the legislators and staffs of the nation's 50 states, its commonwealths and territories. NCSL provides research, technical assistance and opportunities for policymakers to exchange ideas on the most pressing state issues. NCSL is an effective and respected advocate for the interests of state governments before Congress and federal agencies.
 
State Organizations
 
Florida Civic Ed
Welcome to Florida CivicEd; a user's guide to Florida government. This Internet unit provides a wealth of information and resources, including realistic exercises, conversations with legislators, games, challenges, and civic connections designed to help encourage lifelong involvement in government.
 
Law Related Education
 
American Bar Association
The National Law-Related Resources Center helps K-12 schools, college & university faculty, and the general public locate lre materials/programs.
 
Law Focused Education, Inc.
The mission of LFEI is to "plan, promote and support law-related education programs which are aimed at preparing elementary, middle and high school students for effective, responsible citizenship, and which are committed to liberty, justice and the Rule of Law."
 
Law-Related Education Project, Inc.
Law-Related Education Project, Inc. is a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing programs and curriculum that will give youth an understanding and appreciation of the law and the legal system.
 
Street Law
Street Law is practical, participatory education about law, democracy, and human rights. A unique blend of content and methodology, Street Law uses techniques that promote cooperative learning, critical thinking, and the ability to participate in a democratic society. For 30 years, Street Law, Inc.'s programs and curricula have promoted knowledge of legal rights and responsibilities, engagement in the democratic process, and belief in the rule of law, among both youth and adults.
 
Voting and Mock Elections
Kids Voting
A national leader in civic education, Kids Voting USA® (KVUSA) gets students involved and ready to be educated, engaged citizens. Students learn about democracy through a combination of classroom activities, an authentic voting experience and family dialogue.
 
The League of Women Voters
The League of Women Voters, a nonpartisan political organization, has fought since 1920 to improve our systems of government and impact public policies through citizen education and advocacy. The League's enduring vitality and resonance comes from its unique decentralized structure. The League is a grassroots organization, working at the national, state and local levels.
 
The National Student/ Parent Mock Election
The National Student/Parent Mock Election seeks to turn the sense of powerlessness that keeps young Americans and their parents, too, from going to the polls into a sense of the power of participation in our democracy. Note that it is this same sense of powerlessness, psychologists tell us that, is the root cause of violence. One of the most important ways to increase students' sense of significance - and power - is to use the Mock Election to take them out of the classroom and into the real world.
 
Project Vote Smart
Project Vote Smart tries to provide access to abundant, accurate, and relevant information concerning candidates for office.
 
Rock the Vote
Rock the Vote engages youth in the political process by incorporating the entertainment community and youth culture into its activities. From actors to musicians, comedians to athletes, Rock the Vote harnesses cutting-edge trends and pop culture to make political participation cool.
Rock the Vote mobilizes young people to create positive social and political change in their lives and communities. The goal of Rock the Vote’s media campaigns and street team activities is to increase youth voter turnout. Rock the Vote coordinates voter registration drives, get-out-the-vote events, and voter education efforts, all with the intention of ensuring that young people take advantage of their right to vote.
 
The Youth Leadership Initiative – Mock Election
We are a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization based at the University of Virginia Center for Politics. YLI is funded by the United States Congress, the Virginia General Assembly, and private donations. The Youth Leadership Initiative (YLI) conducts the largest secure student-only on-line mock election in the nation, using electronic cyber-ballots tailored to each student's home legislative district.
 
Youth Vote Coalition
The Youth Vote Coalition is a national nonpartisan coalition of diverse organizations dedicated to engaging youth between the ages of 18-30 in the political process. The Youth Vote Coalition has over 100 national members who represent young people across the country.
Service Learning Sites
 
Corporation for National & Community Service
The Corporation for National and Community Service plays a vital role in supporting the American culture of citizenship, service and responsibility. We are a catalyst for change and champion for the ideal that every American has skills and talents to give.
 
The National Service-Learning Clearinghouse
The National Service-Learning Clearinghouse (NSLC), a program of Learn and Serve America, operates America's premier website supporting the service-learning efforts of schools, higher education institutions, communities, and tribal nations. We offer timely information and relevant resources, thousands of free online resources, the nation's largest library of service-learning materials, national service-learning listservs, and reference and technical assistance services. Find out more About NSLC.
 
Public Acheivement
Public Achievement is a youth civic engagement initiative focused on the most basic concepts of citizenship, democracy and public work. Public Achievement draws on the talents and desires of ordinary people to build a better world and to create a different kind of politics.
 
Government Sites-United States
 
FirstGov: The U.S. Government’s Official Web Portal
This site provides access for federal, state, and local government sites; contact information, references, and news of interest.
 
The White House
This site shows the current members of the President’s cabinet.
 
Congress.Org
This site allows searches of Congressional representation by zip code. It also provides contact information on the members of Congress.
 
Thomas: Legislative Information on the Internet
This is the official site of the Congress of the United States. It contains the texts of all bills before Congress and a listing of all members of Congress with contact information.
 
Supreme Court of the United States
This site provides information on the United States Supreme Court: structure, procedures, and cases.
 
Understanding the Federal Courts
This site contains a publication of the United States Court System. Obtain class sets download or the booklet.
 
U.S. Courts: The Federal Judiciary
This government-sponsored site provides information on the federal court system and many important court cases.
 
“Landmark Cases, Supreme Court.” Street Law & The Supreme Court Historical Society
This site provides information on the implied powers of the United States Government and a discussion of McCulloch v. Maryland.
 
“U.S. Courts, The Federal Judiciary.”
This site provides links to all U.S. federal courts.
 
“United States District Courts.” U.S. Courts
This site provides information on jurisdiction of District Courts.
Lesson Plan Sites
 
American Bar Association: Lesson Plans
 
Center for Civic Education: Lesson Plans
 
Columbia Education Center: Lesson Plans
 
Law Focused Education, Inc.: Lesson Plans
 
Law-Related Education Project, Inc.: Lesson Plans
 
The Library of Congress: Lesson Plans
 
The Youth Leadership Initiative: Lesson Plans