We have just been through a contentious national election. Some people are pleased with the outcome; others are not. Most, regardless of their views, are surprised and need to recalibrate. Our students are no different.

Since the election, we have heard from teachers around the country who decided to use the lesson Values and Public Policy to help their students consider their own values and engage in constructive civic dialogue. We’ve shared some of their stories below

Mashpee High School, MA

Celeste Reynolds from Mashpee High School used the lesson to help her students deal with their fears and confusion in the aftermath of the election.

“I am writing you to tell you and your staff thank you for your curriculum!  Yesterday I had students walking into my classroom scared and confused.  I was not sure what to say or do, so I got on your website, printed out the value cards, and started class.  It was one of the most moving classes I have experienced.  All of my students left class that day feeling safe and relieved for having a safe place to discuss the political environment.  Both sides were represented, but each side listened to each other in a civil manner.  I was so proud of each student for his or her honesty and courage.  Thank you for creating curriculum that helps create a safe learning environment and helping students learn to have civil, productive dialogue.”

Modern Global Issues in Chicago, IL

A teacher from a Chicago high school is using the activity with her 9th/10th grade Modern Global Issues class leading up to the election.

“After doing the values activity and the role play in the U.S. Role in the World, each student created his/her own option using the top three values he/she selected from the Values and Public Policy activity.  They shared their Options in creative visuals and written responses. Students created collages, 3-D representations of their values, etc.”


We invite others to share their experiences helping their students to discuss the results of the election and express their views. Send your stories to choices@brown.edu with “election” in the heading. We can’t promise to publish all of the reports, but will try to post a sampling of different approaches.

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