E. Brooke Melton
January 13, 2013
The article I reviewed is entitled "Putting Politics Where It Belongs: In the Classroom." The article is pro discussion-based teaching when reviewing topics such as politics, religion, and values. Classrooms are rich sites for the discussion of controversial issues in large part because the students who populate them bring with them a diversity of perspectives, ideologies, and experiences (Hess & Gatti, 2010). Teaching using discussion-based methods are challenging and teachers have to be ready to manage debates in the classroom. There is a strong line of research that shows that within the classroom, talking with people who hold different political views can similarly work to build political tolerance (Hess & Gatti, 2010). The writers of the article believed that it is important to first identify if a topic to be discussed is either open, closed, or tipping. Open issues are issues that are currently up for debate in our society. The article used same sex marriage as an example of an open issue. A closed issue is one that has already been solved in our society. The article used women's suffrage as an example of a closed issue. Tipping is an issue that is currently open or closed but might one day be changed. Issues that are closed should be avoided in the classroom but issues that are open or tipping can be important issues to discuss in a higher educational setting. Value-Based Instruction versus Standards-Based Instruction Value-based instruction is used to teach students values and promotes behavior that will allow students to become good citizens. It encourages students to develop a secure sense of self and supports an increase in academic standards. Students are taught to think critically and make decisions that will model choices they will make when the become adults. Standard-based instruction is...