"We the Students"

The "We the Students" curriculum was developed to counteract the effects of "civic illiteracy" on the young people of America. The Marshall-Brennan Fellows teach from We the Students: Supreme Court Cases for and About Students, 3rd edition, which highlights the 39 most important Supreme Court cases affecting the rights and responsibilities of students. The Program's goal is to teach students their rights under the Constitution and how to use their knowledge of cases and the Constitution to become effective democratic citizens. Through briefing cases and participating in moot court exercises, students develop critical thinking skills, advancing their rhetorical skills, and refine their persuasive powers.

 

"Youth Justice"

Young people are exposed to crime and the criminal justice system every day through the media and through their personal experiences. Youth Justice in America addresses this interest and draws a broad range of high school students into a lively constitutional conversation about crime and the U.S. juvenile justice system. Youth Justice in America combines expert commentary with material selected from actual federal and state criminal law cases as it explores tough, important questions, such as: What is a crime? How can order be enforced without sacrificing constitutional liberties and civil rights? Should juvenile offenders be treated differently from adult offenders? What are the aims of criminal punishment?

Youth Justice in America focuses on issues and cases that relate to the Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, and Eighth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution (including search and seizure, self-incrimination, the right to counsel, cruel and unusual punishment, and the Supreme Court's rulings on the death penalty for juveniles). The authors (Maryam Ahranjani, Andrew G. Ferguson, and Jamin B. Raskin) bring the subject matter to life with a unique blend of content including selections from key cases that affect students, easy-to-understand definitions of important terms and concepts, boxed figures that encourage further thought and discussion, engaging photos, individual and class exercises and simulations, and age-appropriate suggestions for further reading.

Teaching manuals are available also. Please contact Maryam Ahranjani at mahranjani@wcl.american.edu to obtain copies.

The We the Students and Youth Justice in America casebooks can be purchased through online booksellers, or directly through the publisher CQ Press.