Active Citizenship Resources

The CES has produced a collection of resources for schools and teachers to use on the theme of Active Citizenship.

Raising Hands Background

These include:

  • Lesson resources on the political process
  • Lesson resources on the Church and politics
  • Theological resources on what the Church says about 'active citizens' 
  • Saints and prayer cards
  • Profiles of Catholics in public life
  • Useful links

The General Election 2017

These resources cover the process behind the election, how laws are made, the structures of Parliament and media literacy. 

What is a General Election

Why a General Election Now?

The Catholic Bishops' of England and Wales General Election letter

The Bishop's Conference General Election Web Page

How MPs are elected - PowerPoint

How are goverments are formed and laws are made - Powerpoint

Cabinet role play activity

Create your own political party - PowerPoint

Media literacy - PowerPoint

Debating in the classroom activities

How to become involved - PowerPoint

Top tips for inviting MPs to speak to students

Template letter for inviting an MP to speak

Lesson resource on the European Union referendum

These resources cover the founding of the EU, what a referendum is.

Understanding the European Referendum

Lesson resources on the Welsh National Assembly 

These resources cover the background to the Welsh Assembly and devolved power, how laws are made, the structures of the Welsh Assembly and how to get involved.

How the Welsh government is formed and laws are made

How AMs are elected

How to become involved in the Welsh election

Welsh Government Cabinet role play activity

Theological resources on what the Church says about 'active citizens

Below are theological articles for reflection and two Catholic Social Teaching encylcials.

We are all responsible for all. What does this really mean?

Sollicitudo rei socialis

Octogesima adveniens

Saints & Prayer Cards

Prayer for the Dedication of Studies 1

Prayer for the Dedication of Studies 2

Prayer for Active Citizenship

Saints cards 

Profiles of Catholics in public life

Below are a collection of profiles of Catholics working in politics, charities and social action. We asked them a few questions about their work and this is what they said....

Cathy Corcoran, Chief Executive of the Cardinal Hume Centre

Chris Whitehouse, Political Consultant

Gerrard McMahon, Fundraiser for Marys Meals

Martin Foley, National Director of Apostleship of the Sea

Peter Taylor, Councillor

Rachel McCarthy, Charity worker at CAFOD

Sarah Teather, Charity worker at the Jesuit Refugee Service and ex-MP

Stephanie MacGillivray, Parliamentary Officer 

Useful links

UK Youth Parliament website 

Run by young people, the UK Youth Parliament provides opportunities for 11-18 year-olds to use their voice in creative ways to bring about social change.

Welsh Assembly youth website 

This website provides lots of online and interactive resources for schools and young people about how the Welsh Assembly works for them. 

Parliamentary Education Service website contains lots of resources for schools. Below are a few links to their election resources:

Run a mock election to help your students understand and experience the process. The kit includes everything you will need to get started including a ballot box, polling station poster, party rosettes, electoral registers and poll cards and a handy instructional poster and PowerPoint to keep you on track.

Introduce Parliament with this animation for key stage 3, 4 and A level students. It covers a brief introduction to how Parliament began, the structure of Parliament (including the House of Commons and House of Lords), how Government is held to account, making laws, elections and voting and how to use your democratic rights.

Explores the function and makeup of the three parts that make up Parliament: the House of Commons, the House of Lords, and the monarch.

Investigates how Government is held to account through Prime Minister and Minister's questions and select committees.

Explains the stages a proposal for a new law goes through to become an Act of Parliament.

Examines the UK general election exploring: our right to vote, how candidates and parties gain votes and what happens once elected.

Looks at the alternative options available outside of voting to get your voice heard, covering how to contact MPs and Peers or petition and campaign on issues.

Hansard Society's Parliament and Schools pack

This free pack includes; a model to ensure a well structured and focused visit, which can be used by teachers, MPs and Lords; student-led activities to allow them ownership over the day and the opportunity to have their say; and resources and activities to explore issues around parliamentary democracy and voting.

Active Citizenship 

Several organisations and campaigns were set up during the 2015 General Election to encourage voters to question their candidates about issues which were important to them, to become more informed about the election and party manifestos, and ultimately, to vote.

Due to intense media coverage it is much easier to be aware of political issues during an election and to state our views on issues which matter to us. The real challenge is to take this commitment forward with us into the life of the new government, continuing to make our voices and opinions heard – this is the core meaning and purpose of active citizenship.

These resources can now be used to guide us in our daily lives as active citizens during the life of this government. 

Catholic Bishops' Conference election document

The Bishops' Conference website also featured a series of short films and articles where the Bishops talk about the specific areas in which we are challenged to ensure each person is valued as we seek to build the common good.

These can be found here.

Show Up campaign

The Show Up campaign aims to encourage positive Christian engagement in the run up to, and beyond, the 2015 General Election.