State Circle Lesson Starters

Sharpen the focus on Maryland government and politics with State Circle, MPT’s long-running public affairs program.

Use these lesson starters to help high school students develop civics knowledge, values and dispositions, build their understanding of how the government works, and explore the relationship between the state government and citizens. Select a topic below to find video clips, essential and guiding questions, learning extensions, and other student supports to use in your classroom.


The Blueprint for Maryland Education, also known as the Kirwan Plan, was approved by the Maryland State Legislature 2021. Implementation began in 2022. The plan is a major change in education policy for the state that includes an investment of billions of dollars.

> Go to Blueprint for Maryland Education, the Kirwan Plan Lesson

In collaboration with the University of Maryland (UMD) and the 2nd Lieutenant Richard Collins III Foundation, Bowie State University (BSU) developed the Social Justice Alliance, an organization dedicated to stamping out intolerance while confronting individuals and combatting systems that normalize indifference, justify injustice, perpetuate hate, and inflict violence. Since 2021, the Alliance has hosted a spring symposium to stimulate conversations and direct action for change.

> Go to Young Athletes Using Platforms to Promote Social Justice Lesson

Maryland’s Department of Natural Resources (DNR) uses data and science to better understand the Chesapeake Bay, which helps the agency determine how best to meet the opportunities and challenges to manage, protect, and preserve the Chesapeake Bay.

> Go to Managing, Preserving & Protecting the Chesapeake Bay Watershed Lesson

This learning resource is a production of Maryland Public Television/Thinkport.