As part of her civic education initiative, State Representative Diana DiZoglio (D-Methuen) recently hosted third graders from North Andover’s Kittredge Elementary School for a visit to the State House.
The students had the opportunity to tour the State House and meet with the Representative. DiZoglio brought the students into the House Chamber, where they sat in the seats of legislators, as the Representative explained how ideas become laws. Students then engaged in a debate, moderated by DiZoglio, over a piece of legislation that would mandate seat belts on school buses in the Commonwealth.
“The best learning doesn’t always take place in the classroom but rather out in the community, where students can see firsthand what they’ve been taught,” said Kittredge teacher Cypriana Coehlo. “Our school curriculum is based on Massachusetts and its people, so there’s no better way than to come into the State House and see history in action.”
“We had a great day learning about how state government works,” said North Andover mom Liz McDevitt. “The kids really enjoyed it and we cannot wait to have Representative DiZoglio visit us again at Kittredge.”
“It was amazing to see so many different things in the State House,” said Kittredge student Trinity Dellovo. “We had a great time debating the seat belts bill and seeing Diana in action. Also, the State House is so beautiful, especially the stained glass windows.”
“This was a great field trip,” said Kittredge student Zach Peterson. “Debating seat belts on school buses was so much fun and it was nice talking about how we feel about issues.”
Since 2013, DiZoglio has filed legislation to incorporate civic education in Massachusetts public schools. She also regularly visits schools across the Merrimack Valley, hosting Civic Education Days.
“This is our next generation of leaders so it is vital that we encourage them to be actively involved in the democratic process in whatever way we can,” said DiZoglio. “The students were given an opportunity to debate a real life issue that impacts elementary level students. While the debate was respectful and thoughtful, it was also adorable and entertaining. We got to laugh and have fun while learning some important lessons about state government.”