Constitutional Ambassadors Program
Jeffrey Rosen, president and CEO of the National Constitution Center and Dr. William Hite, superintendent of the School District of Philadelphia, announce partnership for the Constitutional Ambassadors Program, May 2, 2019. Read the Press Release >>
Coming September 2019!
In 1787, delegates came from across the American colonies to Philadelphia to draft a new Constitution. Today, students come from across the country to the National Constitution Center to learn about the Constitution—and they leave inspired to spread constitutional light to others. They are our Constitutional Ambassadors.
The Constitutional Ambassadors experience begins in the classroom before the students arrive; continues with a day-long educational experience at the Center, including live theater; and follows students back to their classrooms, where they can connect with other classrooms across America for crucial conversations on current constitutional issues, using our virtual Classroom Exchanges, which are hosted on the Center’s pathbreaking online educational platform, the Interactive Constitution.
Before the Visit
Before the students come to the National Constitution Center, teachers can use the Interactive Constitution: Classroom Edition resources to teach core constitutional concepts to the students.
Visit to the National Constitution Center
When the students visit through the Constitutional Ambassadors program, they will see rare historical documents, priceless artifacts, interactive exhibits, and powerful live theatrical performances that bring contemporary discussions about the Constitution to life. And the students will practice civil constitutional dialogue and debate with their peers.
Below is a sample schedule:
- Welcome & “Essential Questions.” Students will be presented with a difficult constitutional question—such as whether and how the Constitution protects equality—that they will be encouraged to research throughout the day at the Center.
- Interactive Constitution Workshop. Center educators will take a deep dive into a specific constitutional provision to teach students how to research constitutional issues, how to critically examine primary sources, and how to distinguish their personal views from what the Constitution requires.
- Guided Exploration of the Exhibits. Students will explore the Center’s exhibits and attend the Center’s live theatrical performances, with an eye toward reinforcing core constitutional concepts and diving more deeply into the day’s “Essential Question.”
- Student Town Hall. Students will reconvene to meet a constitutional expert—volunteer state and federal judges, legal scholars, or practicing lawyers—who will lead the students in a deeper discussion about the day’s “Essential Question.” These town halls are often a highlight of the students’ experience.
- Peer Exchange. The day will end with students talking with and teaching each other about what they have learned about the day’s Essential Question. They will practice civil dialogue and active listening skills while discussing and even debating constitutional issues.
After the Visit
The National Constitution Center’s educators will follow up with teachers within a month of their visit to support continued classroom discussion, and to invite the students to participate in virtual classroom exchanges with peer classrooms across the country. The Center will conduct randomized evaluations on the program’s effectiveness to adapt the content and format as needed.
Pricing and booking information will be available soon. Sign up here for updates on this program.
Scholarships will be available for schools in the School District of Philadelphia. Sign up for updates on scholarship opportunities!
Professional Development for Educators
In conjunction with the Constitutional Ambassadors program, the National Constitution Center will offer educators comprehensive training on the Interactive Constitution and supporting materials. The Center will host day-long professional development sessions for educators, which will include exhibit tours, modeled classroom activities, and training in civil dialogue techniques, totaling four reportable hours of professional development—which the Center will submit for Act 48 reporting.