Wednesday, November 6, 2019
Lisa Scharffenberg, a first grade teacher at the Fuller Meadow Elementary School in Middleton, Massachusetts, invited me to attend her classroom to meet with her students to discuss civics and democracy. Some might think that this is too lofty of a topic for 1st graders, I am happy to report that they were active, engaged and very thoughtful.
Lisa and her colleague Lindsay Foden have put together a social studies program called “Electing a Leader” and the idea is to use project-based learning to help frame an important question - “How can we, as responsible citizens, identify important qualities of candidates in order to make informed voting decisions?”
Superintendent Scott Morrison and Principal Dr. Diane Carreiro have supported the teachers and even suggested that I should be contacted and invited to come in for an ‘in-person” visit with the class- I am glad that I did. As a legislative sponsor of laws that have expanded access to civics education in our state I am delighted to see this approach for students. The experience was wonderful and I am encouraged by their interest.