Susie & Tyler’s Current Events

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We know you can Google the news. And we know you know how to make connections between current events and what you are teaching. But wouldn’t it be nice if another teacher did the homework for you?

Another teacher has – two of them, in fact. CLP consultants Susie Marcus and Tyler Kaltenbach Mykut are doing the work for you.

Susie and Tyler connect the Constitution, government, and principles of democracy to a recent news event. Insightful prompts, connections to standards and more keep teachers returning to this resource – check out our archive.

Here are some of the reasons teachers have come to rely on them week after week:

  • Reliable source for appropriate current events to use in class. Ever suffer through student-selected stories of little Fluffy or, worse, the rapist next door? Suffer no longer; appropriateness is no longer a worry.
  • Balanced reporting with a story that has been vetted. Leaving the selecting to Susie and Tyler assures that you will get a story that looks at multiple views or offers additional sources to learn more.
  • Interesting stories with Constitutional connections. Being interesting or entertaining is not enough. That is why Susie and Tyler include connections to the Constitution and other government and civics principles so that you get the most of precious instructional time.
  • Regular, weekly appearance. Since you can rely upon teacher-vetted current events landing in your inbox every week, you are freed to do other things. Consider it CLP’s gift of time for you.
  • Connections to the Constitution, state standards, and the Common Core. Check, check, and check. All three every week. You can depend on it.

Please do Classroom Law Project a favor and a favor for a colleague at the same time: pass the word!

Click below to view the most current event, or any events in our archive.

Susie & Tyler’s Current Event: March 21, 2017

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Click here for the Word version of the week’s current event.



Topic: Federal Budget

Budget Pie chart







Questions to Consider

  • What is a federal budget?
  • How do budgets represent priorities? What is the biggest priority in the 2017 proposed budget? What is the lowest priority?
  • What is the obligation to finance programs that are included the budget? What are the concerns about a budget deficit?
  • What is the relationship between health care and the budget?
  • How do budgets affect US foreign policy?
  • What is the Congressional Budget Office? What role does it play in providing information about budgets? Why is it important that the CBO be nonpartisan?
  • How do the executive and legislative branches of the government work to develop and pass a budget? How likely is it that the first draft of any budget will be substantially modified in Congress?
  • What arguments do supporters of President Trump’s budget make? What are the dangers of “wasteful” spending? What is a Put America First Budget?
  • What arguments do opponents of the Trump 2017 budget make?
  • Why is budget-making “messy”? Why was it designed to be “messy”?
  • Why do revenue bills originate in the House of Representatives?
  • What did the Framers have in mind when they wrote the budget provisions of the Constitution?
  • Why should citizens be concerned about and aware of budget decisions?
  • How do citizens and organizations lobby for their programs when budget cuts affect them?
  • What do you think the federal government should spend the most money on? (Education? Defense? Healthcare? Retirement programs like social security?)


Pre-teaching, Extensions & Further Reading

Lesson Plans

What’s the Connection?




Oregon State Social Science Standards

8.26. Examine a controversial event, issue, or problem from more than one perspective.

HS.27. Examine the functions and process of the United States government.

HS.30. Analyze the roles and activities of political parties, interest groups and mass media and how they affect the beliefs and behaviors of local, state, and national constituencies.

HS.33. Explain the role of government in various current events.

HS.35. Examine the pluralistic realities of society (e.g., race, poverty, gender, and age), recognizing issues of equity, and evaluating need for change.

HS.59. Demonstrate the skills and dispositions needed to be a critical consumer of information.

HS.60. Analyze an event, issue, problem, or phenomenon from varied or opposing perspectives or points of view.


CCSS Anchor Standards

  1. Determine central ideas or themes of a text and analyze their development; summarize the key supporting details and ideas.
  2. Interpret words and phrases as they are used in a text, including determining technical, connotative, and figurative meanings, and analyze how specific word choices shape meaning or tone.
  3. Assess how point of view or purpose shapes the content and style of a text.
  4. Integrate and evaluate content presented in diverse media and formats, including visually and quantitatively, as well as in words.
  5. Delineate and evaluate the argument and specific claims in a text, including the validity of the reasoning as well as the relevance and sufficiency of the evidence.

We the People Lesson Connections

Middle School, Level 2

  • Unit 4, Lesson 19: How did Congress organize the new government?

High School, Level 3

  • Unit 4, Lesson 21: How does Congress perform its functions in the American Constitutional system?
  • Unit 4, Lesson 23: What is the role of the President in the American Constitutional system?
  • Unit 6, Lesson 37: What key challenges does the United States face in the future?


Current Events Archive

Current events from previous years are organized by category. Click on the hyperlinked current event titles below to download the document.  Since the following documents are less current than they were upon release, some of the website links may not work.  You can often find archived articles by searching the referenced website for the article title.


Women’s Suffrage 3/21/2017
Nominating a Justice of the Supreme Court 3/7/2017
The Role of the Press 2/28/2017
Protest 2/21/2017
Executive Order 2/14/2017
Sanctuary Cities 2/7/2017
President’s Cabinet 1/31/2017
U.S.-Russia Relations 1/24/2017
Inauguration 2017 1/17/2017
Fake News 1/10/2017
Nobel Peace Prize 1/3/2017
Word of the Year 12/13/2016
Suing Saudi Arabia 12/6/2016
Gwen Ifill 11/29/2016
Emojis 11/29/2016
Presidential Transition 11/15/2016
Election Day 11/8/2016
Electing the President 11/1/2016
Bundy Trial 11/1/2016
Oregon Ballot Measures 10/25/2016
Walls 10/18/2016
Aleppo 10/11/2016
National Museum of African American History and Culture 10/04/2016
Colin Kaepernick 9/27/2016
Presidential Debates 9/20/2016
Constitution Day, September 17 9/13/2016
Pokemon Go 9/6/2016