A brief overview of what constitutes a politically significant event, what creates one's political perspective, how to deal with different political perspectives, and the differences between fact and opinion.
You are Political
POLITICS IS ALL AROUND YOU! THIS
EXERCISE WILL DEMONSTRATE WHY
PEOPLE THINK DIFFERENTLY ABOUT THE
SAME ISSUES, AND HOW TO DEAL WITH IT.
Hopefully you have watched the news, read articles
in the newspaper or followed stories online.
With a partner, create a list of at least FIVE current
news stories or events that have been in the news
over the summer or very recently
Once you have created the list, go over it again and
try to determine which events are politically
Choose one or two that you feel are the most
significant and share them with the class with an
explanation of why you chose them.
Political Significance Criteria
What makes an event politically significant?
1. Does it have a lasting impact on society?
2. Is the impact extreme is a positive or negative way?
3. Are many people affected by the issue positively or negatively?
4. Does it directly affect you, your family, friends, and/r community?
5. Are many people for and/or against it?
6. Are the differences between supporters and opponents great?
7. Is it an ethical issue involving right and wrong?
If you answered ‘yes’ to a majority of this criteria with
the event you chose, it is most likely politically
It has been decided by Parliament that they will be
given access to all of the digital information (e-mail,
texts, social media) of potential terrorists without a
Do you agree or disagree with this decision?
Try to create a ‘pro & con’ list
Discuss with a partner. Be prepared to share with the
Why do you think there were many different
viewpoints in the class?
As a class, brainstorm the factors that contribute to
citizens having different opinions
Reasons for different
Example of Multiple View Points
Case Study: Climate Change
Watch the following video and keep track of the
evidence that is used to support or refute the debate
concerning climate change:
These two individuals have very different opinions
on one issue. What reasons are there to explain this?
(think of our perspective criteria).
Is it a positive or a negative that people can be on
such opposite ends of an issue?
What if your beliefs, values, and ideology are
different from someone else’s? Who is right in their
What are the consequences of not considering the
perspectives of others?
How might the political perspective of someone who
is a part of the majority differ compared to someone
who is in the minority?
How do you react when others ignore or reject your
We have determined so far what issues can be considered
We have also determined that citizens can have totally
different perspectives on one issue and how many factors
can determine why.
How can people look at the same evidence and come to
What is fact compared to opinion?
What is evidence compared to an argument?
It is important to understand these differences when
looking at an issue
The ability to gather evidence is the key to
understanding the difference between fact and
Evidence is a fact that supports a conclusion.
It offers proof of accuracy and helps us understand what is
Active citizens need to be able to tell the difference
between facts, opinions, and arguments.
They also need to be able to gather evidence tin
support of their beliefs to determine conclusions that
Evidence or Opinion
Deserts are not as beautiful as forests
Madrid is the capital of Spain
Lemons and limes look similar except for their
All dinosaurs are extinct
Our school is a brick building
Civic Mirror is going to be intense
Power of Persuasion
Evidence can be used to serve the person who presents it.
In July, Canada’s unemployment went down 0.1%. Good
Those who looked at the data attributed that to less
Canadians looking for work. Why might a politician
forget to mention this point?
Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne Tweeted out that
Ontario created 15,100 new jobs in July. Good right?
Those who looked at the data attributed that to the
creation of more part time jobs while the number of fault
time jobs actually decreased. Why might she forget to
mention the difference?
Civics and Citizenship by Canadian Investigations