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Curriculum
Staying in Touch
Grade: 3-12
Subject(s): Civics
Required products: Tool Factory Word Processor
Materials
  • Tool Factory Word Processor
  • Local government web page
    Overview
    Students do a web search to locate the names and email addresses of people holding political office in their home state. Then, using the Incredible Emailer function of Tool Factory Word Processor, students compose letters to the representative of their choice about an issue in which they are interested.
    Instructions
    1) Students open the "Staying in Touch Template" in Tool Factory Word Processor and save it as their own.
    2) Website searches for state governments should yield sites with the email addresses of government officials.
    3) Students enter the contact information for government officials in the appropriate boxes.
    4) After researching an issue that the student would like to address in a letter to the government official of their choice, the student creates a new document in Tool Factory Word Processor.
    5) Students compose a letter, run a spell check, and edit it as necessary.
    6) Remind students to save their work.
    7) The student then clicks one of the two email icons and enters the email address of the government official to whom they have written the letter. Send the email as you would any other email.
    8) Students may compose a letter to each government official whose contact information they have obtained.
    9) Contact information can also be obtained for members of the federal government. The websites listed here should help students get started.
    Printable Worksheets
    Mac users: To download, ctrl-click on the worksheet and choose "save link to disk"
  • Staying in Touch Template
    Downloadable Worksheets
    Mac users: To download, ctrl-click on the worksheet and choose "save link to disk"
  • Staying In Touch Template
    Weblinks
  • State of Vermont Home Page
  • State and Federal House of Representatives
  • Congress
  • Senate
    Correlation
    Choose your standard:
    McREL Civics Standard 28: The student understands how participation in civic and political life can help citizens attain individual and public goals.

    Level 2 #1: The student understands why it is important for citizens to monitor their local, state, and national governments; and know ways people can monitor the decisions and actions of their government such as reading about public issues, watching television news programs, discussing public issues, and communicating with public officials.

    Level 3 #1: The student understands how participation in civic and political life can bring about the attainment of individual and public goals (e.g. personal goals such as living in a safe and orderly neighborhood, obtaining a good education, living in a healthy environment;
    public goals such as increasing the safety of the community, improving local transportation facilities, providing opportunities for education and recreation).

    Level 4 #1: The student understands how individual participation in the political process relates to the realization of the fundamental values of American constitutional democracy.