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You decide - A political literacy resource

Last updated:
24 May 2017


What is this?

This resource is aimed at developing professional capacity in practitioners, schools and community settings to develop and embed the key skills of political literacy in young people. The resource introduces the key skills of research, debate, and participation in political literacy. It includes workshop and reading materials supporting the professional development of political literacy skills.

Young people need to understand democratic processes, and to know how the people who we elect, and who represent us at local councils and parliaments, make important decisions that affect almost every aspect of our daily lives. The opportunity to develop skills, knowledge and understanding in political literacy can be found within every curricular area.

This resource supports practitioners, schools and community settings to reflect on how well they build capacity in learners to use their voice, participate and contribute to decision-making processes that are real and meaningful.​

Who is this for?

​This resource would be relevant to practitioners at all levels of broad general education and in some cases into the senior phase.

How to use this learning and assessment resource to improve practice

The resource contains materials which can be used directly in the classroom or other learning environments. It has professional learning resources to support practitioners in schools and community settings to develop professional dialogue, understanding and application of the key skills of political literacy in schools and communities. The resources could equally be used or adapted to engage parents, guardians and carers in the discussion. They also provide an extensive list of external resources which can be used by practitioners.

Reflective questions:

  • Am I confident about teaching political literacy?
  • Am I confident with controversial issues?
  • How can I use social media and digital learning in political literacy?
  • How can I improve participation in political literacy?

Downloads

PDF file: You decide resource (164 KB)

PDF file: Political literacy poster (1.24 MB)

Learning and teaching resources

Word file: Royal High School debating pack (137 KB)

PDF file: The road to the Scottish Parliament - timeline (499 KB) 

Word file: How the Scottish Parliament works (134 KB)

Word file: Powers of the Scottish Parliament (29 KB)

Professional learning materials

PDF file: Political literacy - skills progression (213 KB)

PDF file: Political literacy and the professional standards (219 KB)

PDF file: Political literacy - professional reading digest (175 KB)

PowerPoint file: What is political literacy? (2.65 MB)

Word file: What is political literacy? - guidance (63 KB)

PowerPoint file: Participation in political literacy (3.39 MB)

Word file: Participation in political literacy - guidance (62 KB)

PowerPoint file: Confidence with controversial issues (2.26 MB)

Word file: Confidence with controversial issues - guidance (63 KB)

PowerPoint file: Social media, digital learning and political literacy (4.06 MB)

Word file: Social media, digital learning and political literacy  - guidance (61 KB)

Partnership organisations and opportunities

PDF file: Parliaments and democracy (26 KB)

PDF file: Media (25 KB)

PDF file: Rights and citizenship (27 KB)

​Explore this resource

What is political literacy?

This short video explains the term political literacy and how it is relevant and important across all curriculum areas. It includes contributions from practitioners who have supported the development of political literacy, and from learners on the positive and engaging impact political literacy has had for them.

Can't view this video? You can also view this clip in Glow (log-in required). 

Examples of democracy and political literacy in schools

These video clips provide examples of how schools are developing political literacy skills and how young people are participating in the democratic process in both school and the local community.

In this video pupils from different schools in Scotland describe their involvement in consultative bodies such as school councils and committees, including eco-committees, and authority-wide student forums.

Can't view this video? You can also view this clip in Glow (log-in required). 

Primary school videos

In this playlist, you can choose from three videos:

  • Nesting Primary School - Using an ancient Viking tradition of democracy to share ideas and discuss issues
  • Ralston Primary - Applying political literacy skills in a whole school context
  • Lundin Mill Primary - Applying political literacy skills in a whole school context

Can't view these videos? You can also view these clips in Glow (log-in required). 

Secondary school videos 

In this playlist, you can choose from four videos clips:

  • Douglas Academy - Debating and public speaking
  • Active learning - Scottish Schools Parliamentary Election
  • St Margaret's Academy, West Lothian council - Building democratic literacy
  • Kersland School - Developing pupil voice and independent learning through strong partnerships in RME.

Can't view these videos? You can also view these clips in Glow (log-in required).

Download video transcripts

Word file: What is political literacy (17 KB)

Word file: Developing global citizens - Pupils talk about participation (16 KB)

Word file: Nesting Primary School - Using an ancient Viking tradition of democracy to share ideas and discuss issues (15 KB)

Word file: Ralston Primary School - Applying political literacy skills in a whole school context (18 KB)

Word file: Lundin Mill Primary School - Applying political literacy skills in a whole school context (19 KB)

Word file: Douglas Academy - Debating and public speaking

Word file: Active learning - Scottish Schools Parliamentary Elections (15 KB)

Word file: Kersland School - Developing pupil voice and independent learning through strong partnerships in RME

Word file: St Margaret's Academy, West Lothian council - Building democratic literacy (17 KB) 




Tags:

Social Studies; Learning and assessment; Citizenship