Congress in the Classroom 2007

Posted by on March 12, 2007

Call For Participation: Congress in the Classroom 2007

DEADLINE: March 30, 2007

Congress in the Classroom is a national, award-winning education program now in its 15th year. Developed and sponsored by The Dirksen Congressional Center, the workshop is dedicated to the exchange of ideas and information on teaching about Congress. This year, for the first time, The Center will join with the new Institute for Principled Leadership in Public Service in conducting the workshop.

Congress in the Classroom is designed for high school or middle school teachers who teach U.S. history, government, civics, political science, or social studies. Forty teachers will be selected in 2007 to take part in the program.

The 2007 program will feature a broad overview of Congress with special attention to the new 110th Congress with the Democrats in charge for the first time in more than a decade.

The workshop will be held Monday, July 30 – Thursday, August 2, at the Hotel Pere Marquette, Peoria, Illinois, with workshop sessions to take place in the Peoria Civic Center’s new addition.

Participants are responsible for (1) a non-refundable $135 registration fee (required to confirm acceptance after notice of selection) and (2) transportation to and from Peoria, Illinois. Many school districts will pay all or a portion of these costs. The Center pays for three nights lodging at the headquarters hotel (providing a single room for each participant), workshop materials, local transportation, all but three meals, and presenter honoraria and expenses.

Tentative session titles are listed below. (NOTE: Additional sessions will be listed as presenters are confirmed. More information about the content of each session will be posted as it becomes available.)

* Opening Remarks: A View from Capitol Hill — The Honorable Ray LaHood, (R-IL, 18th District, U.S. House of Representatives)

* Congressional Insight: An Interactive Simulation of a Member’s First Term in the House of Representatives — Bethany Dame, National Association of Manufacturers

* Legislative Life and the Meaning of Public Service — Grant Reeher, Associate Professor of Political Science, Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, Syracuse University

* Rules, Rules, Rules: Congress Relies on Them — Don Wolfensberger, Director of the Congress Project, Woodrow Wilson Center

* Electoral College Strategy 2008 — Thomas F. Schaller, Professor of Political Science, University of Maryland, Baltimore County

* Why Principled Leadership in Public Service Matters — Brad McMillan, Executive Director, Institute for Principled Leadership in Public

* A Former Staff Member’s Perspective on Congress — Brian D. Posler, Assistant Vice President for Academic Affairs, University of Southern Indiana

* What Every New Senator Should Know about the U.S. Senate — Richard A. Baker, Historian, U.S. Senate Historical Office

* How to Get Your Point Across to Congress Members — Stephanie Vance, AdVanced Communications, Washington DC

* Reporting from Congress — Seth Stern, "Congressional Quarterly"

* How Women in Congress have Transformed It — Debra L. Dodson, Visiting Research Scholar, Center for American Women and Politics, Eagleton Institute of Politics, Rutgers University

* Teaching with Editorial Cartoons — Workshop teachers

* The Dirksen Center Web Suite as a Resource for Teachers — Cindy Koeppel, The Dirksen Congressional Center

Other Program Highlights

In addition to the hour-long sessions described above, we will offer what we call "Sound Bites," or 15-minute sessions, on campaign commercials, campaign literature, a film clip of Senator Dirksen explaining the nature of congressional leadership, a new Web feature dealing with the Civil Rights Act of 1964, among other possibilities.

Take a look at The Dirksen Center Web site – <a href=""></a> — to see what participants say about the program and to learn more about the scheduled sessions and presenters.

If you are interested in registering for the Congress in the Classroom 2007 workshop, you can complete an online registration form found at:
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For additional information contact:

Lynn Kasinger
The Dirksen Congressional Center
2815 Broadway
Pekin, IL 61554
Phone: (309) 347-7113
Fax: (309) 347-6432

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