Famed comedian and Tonight Show host Jay Leno will be the featured entertainment and Lifetime Achievement honoree for the 2015 Stars in Service benefiting the Joe Foss Institute and our affiliate, the Civics Education Initiative. See Jay’s latest surprise for one our country’s veterans.
The Civics Education Initiative (CEI), an affiliate of the Joe Foss Institute, was recently announced and met with rave reviews. The CEI would require high students, as a condition for graduation, to pass a test on 100 basic facts of U.S. history and civics from the United States Citizenship Civics Test – the test all new U.S. citizens must pass. Announced September 2012, the legislation is currentlyunderway in six states. For more information, visit civicseducationinitiative.com.
Next August, a landmark piece of legislation turns 50. The Voting Act of 1965, signed by President Lyndon B. Johnson, prohibits racial discrimination in voting. This month’s installment of the National Constitution Center’s Civics in Literature initiative features suggested readings and activities designed to teach students about the struggles faced by African Americans and women in particular to earn the right to become active participants in American democracy.
Granddaddy’s Gift by Margaree King Mitchell
In this book, students learn about Little Joe and her granddaddy, who lived in a small town in Mississippi during segregation. Granddaddy, through his courage and pride, became the first black man to register to vote in his town. Through his actions, he taught his granddaughter about the importance, determination and self-respect.
Little Joe asked her granddaddy why she had to go to school. Granddaddy responded, “I want you to learn as much as you can so when you grow up you can choose what you want to do.” If you had to choose today what career to pursue when you grow up, what would you choose to do? Why was education so important to Little Joe’s granddaddy?
Download the full lesson here!
Check back for more lessons and activities.
Thanks to our friends at the National Constitution Center.
Ryan M. Pitts, a former Army staff sergeant from New Hampshire, is the ninth living veteran of America’s wars in Afghanistan and Iraq to receive the nation’s highest honor for battlefield valor.
Pitt’s mission that day in June 2008 was to be his last before returning home from his second tour of Afghanistan. For the complete story and to hear him describe the ordeal in his own words, click here.