Course Overview

Overall Goals:

Municipolitics approaches civic learning through aspiring to achieve three goals.  We engage students by encouraging them to ask questions about their communities, by fostering specific skills related to participation and civic engagement, and by providing them with access to local resources as well as networking opportunities at our final capstone event.

Goal One: Engagement (Modules 1 & 2)

The initial two modules are designed to develop students’ understandings of the civic landscape. Using political inquiry, we foster students’ grasp of the various levels of government with emphasis on the municipal.  Students are challenged to consider how their choices impact their communities. Through a greater civic awareness, students will be encouraged to ask themselves how they can make a difference in London.

Goal Two: Methodology (Modules 3 & 4)

The last two modules are designed to develop students’ understandings of civic action. Using the existing political processes in London, we explore the meanings of citizenship to youth and how citizenship manifests as activity.  Too often engagement is encouraged without reflection on method.  Both the effectiveness and efficiency of civic actions and their methodologies will be investigated to provide students with the tools to critically engage in civic activity.

Module Structure:

Module 1: What is Civic Engagement?

What does it mean to engage in your community and what does it mean to participate democratically?
This module focuses on some of the different forms of citizenship and their associated values and forms of civic action.

In accordance with strand B and strand C of the 2013 Ministry curriculum documents, this module will foster students’ awareness of the beliefs and values associated with Democratic citizenship and begin to explore how these beliefs and values affect civic action and one’s position on civic issues in London and beyond.  Further, this lesson attempts to draw different ideas and perspectives on citizenship together in order to demonstrate that everyone can contribute to the common good.

Module 2: What Sparks Your Interest in London?

Module 2 provides students with the opportunity to evaluate different forms of volunteerism. Lessons in module 2 attempt to grow students’ ties with the London Community so that students can transition into areas they are concerned about.
This module focuses on the contributions of individuals to the common good and figuring out how we can each make such contributions in our day-to-day lives.

In accordance with the strand C of the 2013 Ministry curriculum documents, this lesson helps students analyse a variety of civic contributions and ways in which people can contribute to the common good.

Module 3: The Political Process

This module investigates the political process in London and how youth can become involved in this process through the London Youth Advisory Council.  Its lessons explore how civic engagement can be mobilized through participation.
This module offers a mini-conference with LYAC councillors in which students will be encouraged and supported to engage with current major civic issues in London.

In accordance with the strand B and C of the 2013 Ministry curriculum documents, lessons within module 3 stimulate students’ engagement with a range of issues of civic importance, especially the roles and responsibilities of related institutions, structures, and figures in Canadian governance to particular issues. Further, these lessons provide students with the opportunity to develop a plan of action to address a civic issue of personal interest.

Module 4: Advocacy

This module introduces students to the existing and potential outlets with which to create change as well as methods by with which to influence and affect collective action.  Also, this module stimulates students to think critically about, and assess, the efficiency and effectiveness of various methods of civic activity.  This module attempts to connect students with local initiatives to help foster their advocacy.
This module offers lessons on advocacy and social movements.  Its lessons invite students to engage in discussions with their peers about civic activity, especially the structure, resources, management, and overall efficiency and effectiveness of particular activities.

In accordance with the strand B and C of the 2013 Ministry curriculum documents, module 4 revisits the beliefs and values associated with democratic citizenship in Canada, especially how they relate to individuals’ positions on civic issues.  These modules go into greater depth exploring various civic contributions, and how these contributions affect the common good.  Finally, this module investigates how beliefs and values influence perspective on civic issues, and how people’s values are recognized and represented in communities in Canada.