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CT-N Legislative Session 
Viewing Activity


"How to Watch Your Legislators"

Developed by: Victor W. Geraci, Ph.D.

Click Here for the Word Document version of this page.

 
 
Video Session: Use an appropriate taped CT-N session of the Connecticut House of Representatives or Senate discussing a bill with clearly defined party arguments. Check our Hot Topics page for ideas.

Additional Materials Needed:

Class Time: Three to five class periods.

Objectives: See unit general objectives.

Anticipatory Set: 

  • Video clip from a Hollywood legislative session
  • Student Council examples


Activity:

  • Break the class into two or four groups and have each group watch the video and complete the following questions and activities as they watch the video.
    1. What will the bill create? (basic details and definition of terms)
    2. Who supports the bill? (geography, party) Use the legislative map to trace the legislators.
    3. Who opposes it? (geography, party) Use the legislative map to trace the legislators.
    4. Each group comes to consensus on why do we need or not need this bill?
    5. Now tell of the groups that they support the bill and that they do not support the bill. Have each group create a list of reasons to support their cause.

     

  • Teacher Notes: Help guide the student groups by offering some key questions surrounding the bill. The teacher will need to provide helping questions and suggestions for both the opposition and the supporters.
  • Have each group create a maximum 5 minute Presentation of their cause.
  • Presentations of group findings.

Debrief/Closure: Bring the class together as a whole and discuss the following Key issues/ questions:

  • What is the problem? (Competing definitions)
  • Will any law deal with the issue?
  • How do federal and state laws interact?
  • What is the influence of money?
  • Have the class vote on the bill. Compare and contrast to the actual vote if it has taken place.

If you have any comments or suggestions about this activity or would like to submit your own activity, please contact us and share your ideas.