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Thursday, September 30, 2010

21st Century Skills

There's a lot of talk about 21st Century skills. The Partnership on 21st Century Skills identifies the skills through a framework fusing the 3 R's and the 4 C's (critical thinking/problem solving, communication, collaboration, and creativity/innovation).

Civic literacy is an important interdisciplinary 21st century theme that promotes higher understanding of academic content in core subjects. What is civic literacy?
  • Participating effectively in civic life through knowing how to stay informed and understanding governmental processes
  • Exercising the rights and obligations of citizenship at local, state, national and global levels
  • Understanding the local and global implications of civic decisions
Check the Kids Voting Mecklenburg website for classroom resources and learning opportunities to help your classroom, your child or you develop civic literacy. Share your ideas and best practices!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

More on Time

A colleague shared this great online tool - use it in the classroom or to keep yourself on task as you work, check out Facebook or read email.

Friday, September 24, 2010


We all know that time is important. We want to be on time, know what time lunch is and watch a TV show at a certain time.

Do you know the history of time? The US Department of Commerce, National Institute of Standards and Technology and US Naval Observatory provide an online resource at

You can check the exact time in multiple US time zones and view interesting exhibits about the history of timekeeping, calendars through the ages, how watches work and how time relates to US history.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Teens: Make your voice heard on local decisions

Teens are invited to join Mecklenburg Youth Voice, a youth program of Kids Voting Mecklenburg.  Students meet 2-3 evenings a month at the Government Center to identify and address local policies and decisions, and to plan and have important conversations with public officials.

All high school students are invited. It is a good opportunity for high school student leaders - both from established leadership roles such as student council and clubs as well as non-traditional, self-identified, emerging leaders - to learn about government and gain leadership skills.
In 2010-11, MYV will meet with CMS, Charlotte and Mecklenburg County leaders to provide a youth perspective on local polices, issues and decisions. In 2009-10, MYV discussions and forums included:
  • Peter Gorman to discuss CMS policies and decisions
  • Center City Partners to give youth advice on the 2020 Vision city plan
  • Judge Rickye McCoy-Mitchell about strategies for youth offenders
  • Charlotte Observer Associate Editor Fannie Flono and education reporter Ann Helms on coverage of school issues and youth
  • Charlotte mayoral candidates Anthony Foxx and John Lassiter on youth issues
  • Board of Education candidates on CMS issues important to students
  • Board of Education chair Eric Davis on leadership and the how the school board makes decisions
All high school students are invited to participate. We want all schools represented. Students should contact Kids Voting to learn more. Community service hours available.

More information and flyer

Monday, September 13, 2010

Constitution Day

Constitution Day is Friday, September 17, 2010. Schools receiving federal funding are required to spend some time during the class day to study and celebrate the US Constitution.

This is an opportunity to incorporate civic learning into the classroom. There are many excellent resources and lesson plans available, covering just a few minutes to entire class periods and more.

Good discussion topics include the Bill of Rights, the First Amendment (Freedom of Speech), Voting Rights and more.
High schools have the additional opportunity of hosting a student voter registration drive - use this opportunity to explore the right to vote and also celebrate NC Voter Awareness Month. Contact the Board of Elections to get supplies and learn more.

Kids Voting Classroom Resources

Welcome to the Civic Learning Center. This is where we will post great classroom resources and student learning opportunities. We will also share tips and strategies for effectively incorporating civic literacy to boost student achievement and build citizenship and leadership.