We need a solution
as vital as the youth we seek to educate.

Action Civics is a collaborative, project-based approach to civics education, in which young people learn about democracy by actively working through the political process to address issues in their own community.

18%
of Young People
trust in the federal government. In 1973, a majority of young people believed that government would do the right thing; today, only 18% do.
33%
of Americans
born after 1980 consider it “essential” to live in a democracy.
74%
of School District Superintendents
in 2018 strongly agreed or agreed that preparing students for engaged citizenship is a challenge for their district, a dramatic increase from 50% the previous year.
24%
of Americans
consider democracy a “bad” or “very bad” way to govern a country.

We believe Action Civics
is that solution.

We’re 100% committed to enrolling teachers like you in this free online curriculum to kickstart Action Civics in your own classroom.

We the people

So many individuals and organizations come together to contribute to the solution by providing Action Civics curricula and resources for schools and teachers. This leads to thousands of students across the country increasing their civic knowledge, skills, and values.

Generation Citizen has been a part of this movement and works to ensure all students have access to a robust Action Civics education. In fact, Generation Citizen has worked with over 75,000 students since its start in 2010!

Nallely Lebron from Providence, RI

The Essentials
of Action Civics

Student-led projects

Students identify and choose the issue to tackle and lead the action toward change.

Real-world personal issues

Students choose issues that are relevant to their own lives and experiences in community.

Creating lasting change

Students engage in the political process advocating for policies that address systemic root causes.

Reflection on impact and approach

During and after the project is complete, students spend time considering their efforts and impact.

I am the present and future of American democracy. For young people like me, our age is not our weakness. it is our strength… We are the future of our country and we are the changemakers we have been waiting for.
Ruba Tariq, Brooklyn, NY
Testimonials

Educators for Action Civics

Educators all around the country are bringing change in their communities

How it Works

We're here to provide teachers like you a free online curriculum to implement Action Civics in your own classroom.

Participation

Do you want your civics coursework to come alive and connect with your students, preparing them for a lifetime of participation in our democracy and their community?

Change

Do you want to see your students do more than simply vote, bringing real change in their community?

Connection

Do you want to bridge your classroom with your community?

"The goals of traditional civic education--to increase civic knowledge, voter participation, and volunteerism--are all still fundamental. But the new generation of civic learning puts students at the center."
– Arne Duncan, US Secretary of Education (2009-2015)

Introduce Action Civics to your students through our free online course.

Here’s a brief tour of what’s inside the course so you can see the power of what you’ll be learning to teach your students.

01

Introduction to Action Civics

By the end of this lecture, participants will have identified the core tenets and steps of Action Civics and compared stories of youth civic engagement to their own goals for student learning.

TOPICS COVERED
  • What Makes Action Civics Different?
  • Student Voice and Democratic Classrooms
  • Youth Leading Change
02

A Foundation in Local Politics

By the end of this lecture, you will have analyzed your own local government structures and determined how to get in touch with people your students might identify as key experts or influencers on their issue.

TOPICS COVERED
  • Laying the Foundation
  • Branches of Government
  • Getting Involved in Political Processes
  • Finding Your Government Officials
03

Examine Community and Identify an Issue

By the end of this lecture, you will have explored strategies to help your students examine and select issues to focus on in their communities.

TOPICS COVERED
  • Defining and Exploring Community
  • Culturally Responsive Teaching
  • Selecting an Issue
04

Research and Develop an Action Plan

By the end of this lecture, you will have explored the process of student-led research and constructing an Action Plan and analyzed multiple templates to help organize that planning.

TOPICS COVERED
  • Planning Accordingly
  • Components of an Action Plan
  • Researching Your Issue
  • Putting it All Together
05

Take Action, Present, and Reflect

By the end of this lecture, you will have reviewed various examples of students.

TOPICS COVERED
  • Taking Action
  • Students Sharing Their Learning
  • Reflecting and Assessing During Action Civics
06

Extend the Practice

By the end of this lecture, you will have considered how to build upon your or your school’s existing civic learning practices.

TOPICS COVERED
  • Bringing Action Civics to Students in Your Class, School, and District
  • Advocating for Civics Education Legislation
  • Action Civics Across the County
Testimonials

Students as Changemakers

Students all around the country are bringing change in their communities

Activate Youth Voice

Bring Action Civics to Your Classroom
Kick Start Now!

Frequently Asked Questions

How can we help? Contact us KSAC@generationcitizen.org

Is Action Civics nonpartisan?

Action Civics is non-partisan. The essence of the educational model is in learning about the political system, the process of identifying problems, assessing their causes, and developing the skills to address them. The issues that students can, and do, address span a very wide spectrum and the students’ strategies often are practical, rather than ideological. The local focus of Action Civics results in issues transcending party lines. The key is that regardless of chosen issue or goal, students are leading these projects!

How long will this course take?

The course should take approximately 3 hours to complete. There are six modules and teachers can stop and save as they go. After you kick start your own Action Civics practice with these modules, it’s up to you to bring you learning to life for your students!

How long does an Action Civics project take?

It varies! We find that teachers go into various levels of depth with the project. For example, some teachers facilitate Action Civics as a stand-alone several-week unit. Others integrate Action Civics a few days a week as a “lab”component of their course/content and others have even built an entire course around an Action Civics project.

What do I get from completing this course?

Skills and resources to implement Action Civics! Additionally, Generation Citizen  partnered with Donors Choose to provide early participants of KSAC with monetary-based Donors Choose credits ($300 per teacher) which teachers can use to purchase supplies and/or experiences for their students during their Action Civics project. While the funds have currently all been allocated, Generation Citizen is working to secure additional funding and all participants will be notified if and when Donors Choose credits are available again.

Can I incorporate Action Civics into multiple content areas?

Absolutely! In addition to the obvious overlap with Social Studies content, students are also building ELA skills like persuasive writing, speech making, research, analyzing arguments, and others. Students often conduct surveys and analyze data requiring them to apply skills from their Math classes. Depending on the projects, students may also need to apply Science content - perhaps they’re working on a project addressing the environment, for example. They also just may want to apply tenets like the Scientific method to their research. Some students have also used art in their advocacy projects. Indeed, there are a number of ways to make Action Civics cross curricular!

Who else is doing Action Civics?

Educators, districts, and organizations across the country are joining the Action Civics movement! Check out the National Action Civics Collaborative for direct links to information about some of the leading practitioners in the field. Additionally, throughout the modules you’ll see references and even resources from other organizations engaged in this pedagogy.