Civic Responsibility Resources 2020

As part of an initiative that the Jewish Education Program put together in approaching the 2020 presidential election, Civic Spirit was asked to put together resources on the topic of “Civic Education and Engagement in Jewish Education.”

The goal was to shine a spotlight on non-partisan resources of value to educators and families.

These materials were built off the Civic Spirit Founder Dr. Tamara Tweel’s keynote speech at the Jewish Futures Conference 2017: For Which It Stands, organized by the Jewish Education Project and the Lippman Kanfer Foundation for Living Torah, which focused on civic values and engagement.

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  • Developing Civic Agency: Leadership and Personal Responsibility (grades 5-8)
    Jewish, historical and contemporary sources provide the backdrop to uncover and examine key components of leadership and personal responsibility. Adapted from Civic Spirit’s Civics-Learning-in-a-Box and is suitable for class and home settings. 
  • Civil Discourse: Love Thy Neighbor (grades 5-8)
    Adapted from Civic Spirit’s Civics-Learning-in-a-Box model, includes texts and tools designed to enhance student understanding and engagement in civil discourse through the lens of Jewish texts. Also provides a 5-Step Framework that will support young tweens in developing civic agency. 
  • The First Amendment (grades 9-12)
    Case studies, sources, and discussion prompts to gain a fuller understanding of the First Amendment. Designed for class use and can be easily used at home. 
  • Media Literacy Challenge (grades 9-12)
    Many of us are primarily exposed to articles, messages, and posts that reinforce our existing way of thinking. There is tremendous power in understanding the logic of “the other side” for the purposes of problem-solving. This lesson guides students to create a newsletter reflective of multiple perspectives on a civic issue. 
  • Restoring Faith in Democracy (grades 9-12)
    A guide to developing individual and group prayers for America and Democracy, drawing on examples of liturgy from Jewish and other traditions. 
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