Close Up’s lesson plans, professional development, and classroom resources are designed to translate our nearly 50 years of civic education experience into practices and ideas that are useful and accessible to classroom teachers. We know from educating almost 1,000,000 middle and high school students from across the country on our experiential education programs in Washington, DC, that helping young people discuss controversial social issues can be challenging. Close Up’s approach to civic education in the classroom draws upon our practical experiences engaging young people from diverse backgrounds in discussions and debates about pressing policy issues, government structure, and democratic values. Our methodology is informed by experiential and cooperative learning theories, issue-centered education, and principles in democratic education.
Below you will find information about Close Up’s materials, lesson plans, professional development, and programming–all designed to help educators and students engage in meaningful dialogue about political and social issues.
Prepare students to discuss current events with our classroom resources.Learn More >
Gain skills, tools, and strategies to frame controversial issue discussions in your classroom.Learn More >
Connect with other classrooms across the country to practice civil dialogue.Learn More >
Our weekly posts frame major issues in the news to spark classroom discussions.Learn More >
High school students from across the country come together to make lasting connections with the people and places that represent our democracy.Learn More >