8th graders participated in an annual 8th grade event, We the People Competition hosted up in Indianapolis. The 8th graders not only learn the Constitution but valuable speech and debate skills. Great work 8th graders!
The We the People program’s culminating activity is a simulated congressional hearing in which students “testify” before a panel of judges acting as members of Congress. Students demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of constitutional principles by evaluating, taking, and defending positions on relevant historical and contemporary issues. The hearing not only deepens student knowledge of the Constitution and Bill of Rights, but it builds important 21st-century skills and dispositions, such as working cooperatively, public speaking, managing conflict, and reaching consensus. Teachers may engage their students in either non-competitive simulated congressional hearings or various Regional and State competitions.
The primary goal of We the People: The Citizen and the Constitution program is to promote civic competence and responsibility among Indiana’s elementary, middle and high school students. The program includes:
- an instructional component, focused on enhancing students’ understanding of the institutions of American constitutional democracy and discovering the contemporary relevance of the Constitution and Bill of Rights, and
- a culminating activity of a simulated congressional hearing in which students “testify” before a panel of judges. Students demonstrate their understanding of constitutional principles and have opportunities to evaluate, take, and defend positions on relevant historical and contemporary issues.