Civics Education Resource Site

Illinois Civics Webinar Archive

IllinoisCivics.org is committed to providing educators throughout the Land of Lincoln with timely professional development to support educators with the implementation of the civics course requirements in middle and high schools.

Listed below are recordings of past webinars. Access upcoming events on the Professional Development Calendar.

Post Election Analysis and Role of the Courts with Dr. Steven D. Schwinn

In this #Teach2020 webinar, Dr. Schwinn answered questions about the role judicial review might play in the 2020 election. Dr. Schwinn explored electoral issues before the election, emerging electoral issues post-election, the impact on the presidential transition, President Trump’s team litigation efforts, and the presidential pardon power.

Webinar (11/4/20)
Blog - The Role of Courts in the 2020 Election

 

Processing the 2020 Election

Dr. Shawn Healy, Sr. Steven D. Schwinn, Catherine Hawke from the Division of Public Education for the American Bar Associate and the Illinois Civics Instructional coaches analyze the "knowns" and "unknowns" one day after the 2020 election, what the exit polls tell us about who voted, and possible court litigation surrounding the elections. Strategies for classroom use were shared.

Webinar (10/21/20)
Blog - Processing the Results of the 2020 Election: The Knowns and the Known Unknowns

 

Local Journalism and the Citizens' Agenda

Reporters from WBEZ discuss how they approach covering local elections, combating "fake news", and engaging communities in setting policy coverage in the Citizens' Agenda initiative.

Webinar (10/21/20)
Blog - Local Journalism and the Citizens' Agenda

 

The Electoral College: Is There a Better Way?

Explore Electoral College history, workings, and calls for reform. Get connected with free classroom resources aligned to the Illinois civics course requirements to teach about the Electoral College in your classroom.

Webinar (10/14/20)
Blog - The Electoral College: Is There a Better Way?

 

IllinoisCivics.org Book Club: Why We're Polarized by Ezra Klein

The IllinoisCivics.org Civics Instructional Coaches discuss the impact of polarization both in society and in the classroom. Learn how educators are addressing the challenges and opportunities of partisanship during the 2020 election and beyond.

Webinar (10/14/20)

 

SCOTUS Preview with Dr. Steven D. Schwinn

Dr. Steven D. Schwinn provided an update on the Supreme Court of the United States vacancy and important cases before the court involving the Affordable Care Act, the First Amendment, and Unitary executive Authority.

Webinar (10/7/20)
Blog - SCOTUS Preview

 

The Great Debates with the Museum of Broadcast Communications

Explore the museum's online resources for teachers and students to explore different aspects of media coverage of presidential candidates, debates, and elections. The museum’s new online materials cover historical debates and candidates as well as provide guidance for how to help students navigate the interplay of media and candidates in this election cycle.

Webinar (9/23/20)
Blog - Teaching History through Civics: The Great Debates

 

Engaging Student Voice When Teaching Remotely

Student-centered inquiry is at the core of emerging learning standards that span across the curriculum. New educational initiatives from the state of Illinois require students to explore topics including gender, orientation, race, religion, abilities, immigration, civil rights, and more. Learn research-based best practices in creating a safe environment for student participation in addressing the most essential questions facing our communities, in person, or at a distance. 

Webinar (8/26/20)
Remote Learning Toolkit

 

Understanding How the Government Works: Judicial Review

Judicial review is the power of courts to decide the validity of acts of the legislative and executive branches of government. The U.S. Constitution does not explicitly mention judicial review, but it is a constitutional concept that shapes our republic. This webinar will explore the current application of judicial review and deliberations over this power of the courts. Participants will be connected to free resources to enhance their classroom practice aligned to the Illinois Social Science standards and civics mandate. This webinar features Steven D. Schwinn, professor of law at the University of Illinois Chicago John Marshall Law School, where he teaches constitutional law, comparative constitutional law, and human rights. 

Webinar (7/15/20)
Blog - Understanding How the Government Works: Judicial Review

 

Understanding How the Government Works: Popular Sovereignty

In this election season, the constitutional concepts of popular sovereignty and constitutional republic are in clear view. Explore both of these concepts and current events that explore the initiative to expand the access of “we the people” to the ballot box. Participants will be connected to free resources aligned to the Illinois Social Science standards and civics mandate.

Webinar (7/22/20)
Blog - Understanding How the Government Works: Popular Sovereignty

 

Understanding How the Government Works: Separation of Powers

Separation of powers and checks and balances are important concepts in our constitutional republic. In this webinar, participants explored the balance of power in both our state and federal governments and analyzed current examples of both constitutional concepts in action. Get connected to free resources aligned to the Illinois civics content standards and civics mandate for classroom use. 

Webinar (7/8/20)
Blog - Understanding How the Government Works: Separation of Powers

 

Understanding How the Government Works: Limited Government

Explore the constitutional concept of limited government and the tension between individual rights and the common good in our everyday lives. Get connected to free resources to enhance their current practice aligned to the Illinois Civics mandate. 

Webinar (7/1/20)
Blog - Understanding How the Government Works: Limited Government

 

Understanding How the Government Works: Federalism

Federalism is one of the basic principles of our U.S. Constitution but a complex concept to understand. When the Framers created the Constitution, they not only established a system of checks and balances to separate power within the government, they also divided authority between local, state, and national governments. Explore how federalism works and impacts our lives. Get connected with free resources aligned to the IL Social Science standards and civic mandates to enhance your own classroom practice. 

Webinar (6/24/20)
Blog - Understanding How the Government Works: Federalism

 

Understanding the Illinois Civics Mandates

Unpack the Illinois Civics mandates for middle school and high school civics. Questions are answered about course content and implementation requirements. Explore a civics audit to analyze your current curriculum for compliance. Get connected with your regional civics instructional coach to help you prepare all students for college, career, and civic life. 

Webinar (5/27/20)
Blog - Understanding the Illinois Civics Mandates

 

Understanding the Proven Practice of Current and Controversial Issue Discussions

The new Illinois civic education requirements prescribe that students discuss current and controversial issues in the classroom. Learn research-based best practices in creating a safe environment for student participation in addressing the most essential questions facing our communities. Learn strategies to engage students in current and controversial issues discussion to enhance your current classroom practice. Explicit connections will be made to the Illinois Social Science Standards, Social Emotional Learning, the Common Core State Standards, and the Danielson Framework. 

Webinar (6/3/20)
Blog - Understanding the Proven Practice of Current and Controversial Issue Discussions

 

Understanding the Proven Practice of Simulations of Democratic Processes

The one-semester civic education requirement for Illinois prescribes that students engage in simulations of democratic processes to acquire and practice important disciplinary content, aptitudes, and habits. Get free resources that support both short and long-term gameplay, simulations of civic practices, and role-playing. Explicit connections will be made to the Illinois Social Science Standards, the Common Core State Standards, and the Danielson Framework for Effective Teaching. 

Webinar (6/10/20)
Blog - Understanding the Proven Practice of Simulations of Democratic Processes

 

Understanding the Proven Practice of Service Learning

The Illinois Social Science standards and Civics mandates provide a pathway for students to engage in informed action to address essential questions facing their community. Learn how to design and assess service learning projects. Get free resources to support the new civics requirement and standards implementation. 

Webinar (6/17/20)
Blog - Understanding the Proven Practice of Service Learning through Informed Action

 

Teaching Civics through History with the National Archives

Explore how primary sources can be used to teach civics through history. Get connected with free materials to enhance your curriculum. This webinar features Dr. Charles Flanagan, Outreach Supervisor for the Center for Legislative Archives in the National Archives and Records Administration.

Webinar (7/29/20)
Blog - Teaching Civics through History with the National Archives

 

#CivicsInTheMiddle Book Club: Fault Lines in the Constitution

A discussion of Fault Lines in the Constitution: The Framers, Their Fights and the Flaws that Affect Us Today by Levinson and Levinson. 

Webinar (7/31/20)
Resources

 

Courageous Conversations Book Club: White Fragility

Good Reads explains, “In this in-depth exploration, anti-racist educator Robin DiAngelo examines how white fragility develops, how it protects racial inequality, and what can be done to engage more constructively.” Shawn Healy leads a dialogue about what all stakeholders (parents, educators, community allies) can do to promote empathy and understanding across differences and work together to strengthen our communities.

Webinar (8/12/20)

 

Culturally Responsive Teaching to Promote Anti-Racist Classrooms

What are the best practices that create an environment to engage students in courageous conversations around race, justice, equity, and progress? This webinar provides a brief literature review of culturally responsive pedagogy and explore practical steps educators can take to help students be upstanders to promote anti-racism. 

Webinar (8/5/20)
Anti-Racist Classroom Resources

 

A School-Wide Approach to Centering the Lived Experiences of Students

Democracy School leaders explore examples of schoolwide strategies that support belonging and inclusion and create conditions for educators to do the transformative work that is necessary to ensure that our schools can be places that center relationships.

Webinar (7/29/20)
Let's Go There: Making a Case for Race, Ethnicity and a Lived Civics Approach to Civic Education

 

How to Raise a Socially Conscious, Anti-Racist Kid

Facilitated by Amber Coleman-Mortley, Sonia Mathew, and Dr. Shawn Healy. The conversation centered around essential questions such as: What does it mean to be anti-racist? How do you raise a socially conscious child? These experts discussed why we need to better prepare our children to tackle the issues of racism, equity, and social justice how parents can go on their own anti-racism journey and what steps families can take to build stronger communities through anti-racist work. 

Webinar (7/20/20)
Anti-Racism for Parents

 

Teaching Civics Through History: Lessons from the Holocaust

The Illinois Civics Mandate, newly expanded to include grades 6-8, provides ample opportunities to draw from the lessons of history to teach students how to be informed, engaged citizens. In this workshop, participants explored the systematic efforts undertaken in Nazi Germany to strip Jewish citizens of their civil, economic, and political rights. Examine how this methodical dehumanization exploited and deepened divisions in German society in the years prior to World War II, and consider what actions ordinary people took to resist—and what factors led others to remain bystanders. Explore how to bring the lessons of the past into the present. Where do we see opportunities today to get involved to protect rights that are being threatened, and what positive actions can students take to address the essential question, “What role do individuals and institutions play in confronting injustice?”

Webinar (7/14/20)

 

Creating Safe Inclusive Space for the LGBTQ+ History Requirement

Beginning in the 2020-2021 school year, the state of Illinois will require public schools to teach the role and contributions of LGBTQ+ people in Illinois and US history. As educators, this presents an opportunity to incorporate new narratives and resources into our efforts to give the past meaning for our students. In this workshop, participants explored oral histories as essential tools in teaching the LGBTQ+ experience and develop strategies to help students develop both a historical and a human understanding of this complex history. Experience free resources and lesson plans that have students explore the essential question, “How should we live together?” Explicit connections will be made to the Illinois Social Science Standards and Civics requirements, Social Emotional Learning Competencies, and the Danielson Framework for Effective Teaching. 

Webinar (7/21/20)
LGBTQ+ Toolkit