Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Tax Rates on 538

The 538 Blog has a few great charts which look at how our corporate taxes compare to other countries (above) as well as the percentage of our individual and corporate taxes as a percentage of the GDP and more.  

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Google Goes to Washington


This article is a great one to share with your students.  First off it is about Google, something we all know.  Secondly it discusses how Google has gone from being an outlier to politics in Washington, D.C. to one of the biggest presences in the city.  It discusses how it courts both sides of the aisle, as well as the libertarians, gives to think tanks, looks for future leaders to work for it and donates to a multitude of campaigns.  

If yo go to Open Secrets, you can see who and how much Google has donated to groups

Thursday, April 10, 2014

CSPAN Review for AP Government


Dan Larsen and Andrew Conneen do a great CSPAN AP US Government review each year a few days before the AP exam.  Larsen is a question leader at AP Government.  Above is their 2013 review and here are the other past ones.  I will get back to you shortly on the date of this year's live review when your students can call in and get questions answered.

You can watch this year's edition on Saturday May 10th from 9:15 to 10 AM EST on CSPAN.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Reformated Long Version for Government Review

Thanks to @BillyShulman for reformatting the long review guide below into 200+ questions that will definitely cover everything you want to review.  Go to "file" and "make a copy" and you can delete the questions you don't want.  

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Review Packet for Government

My new colleague Doug Zywiol found this great AP Government review guide online (he can't remember where and if you know, please tell me so I can give credit where it is due).  It is imposing as it is very lengthy.  But you can tailor it to your liking  For example, we just gave our last test (courts, civil liberties and rights) so after taking it off, cutting some of it off and then formatting it, our own review is only twelve pages.  If you teach regular government you also might want to look at the documents as they should be help to you as well.  They are both done thematically and have boxes for easy answers.

While I am on reviewing for the AP exam, a few weeks ago the College Board put out word that they needed AP readers so if you are interested apply right away here.  I know their website had issues all fall so they actually were short just recently. 

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Oral Argument in McCutcheon v. FEC

Who is Shaun McCutcheon (v. FEC)

McCutcheon v. FEC

I'll probably have several posts on today's McCutcheon v. FEC ruling.  Here is a great graphic showing the before and after.  Here are all of the steps the decision took in the US Supreme Court.  There are lots of good terms here such as amicus curiae, writ of certiorari as well as ScotusBlog (the best place to find out about current court cases) coverage of the case.  

Sunday, March 30, 2014

How to use Google Scholar for Supreme Court Research


I teach a course in my county that shows teachers how to integrate technology into the social studies classroom and is open to 4-12th grade teachers.  Funny thing is that a number of tech people have taken it, but this spring I have my first librarian who made the video above on how to use Google Scholar to find research on Supreme Court cases.  

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Editing in YouTube


Believe it or not, but a fellow chair asked what we are doing for our end of the year project.  Some of my students will be looking at an immigrant in their family and writing an original essay on that person, but they also need to have a narrated video on the person.  So I am toying with them using YouTube to edit it since they now have access to accounts in it.  Above is a video explaining how to use it. 

Saving Twitter & Other Sites to Storify

So I am sitting in a library trying to finish the third editing of my book and dealing with a peer review comment that asked how we can save Twitter.  So to show that I too can learn new tricks, Frank Franz mentioned Storify to me and instantly you can drag in the Tweets you want as well as any website and create a story you can refer to later.  I must admit I am the kind of teacher who goes to an in-servicest and immediately comes back to my classroom and sift through the notebooks taking out only what I want to keep.  These items I scan and put in my in-services' folder on Google Drive (yes I am a minimalist and my classroom only takes 30 minutes to pack up each summer!).  So what I like about Storify is that I can essentially do the same, but even better I can delete items I do not want later.  You can collect Twitter, YouTube, Google+, websites, etc. to your hearts desire and create a storybook that you can edit later.

Above is a how to video.  If you are like me and try lots of sites online, you might want to consider having a "trash" e-mail for everything.  If I need the site to email me I can easily go to the trash site, but that way any extra email I might get because of signing up for so many things goes to the aforementioned site.  

Friday, March 28, 2014

Remind101 Adds Attachments


If you follow this blog, you know I use Remind101 every day of the week to remind my students about their homework.  Simply put it is has greatly improved my students ability to complete homework, but also to communicate with them, especially this year when I had to put up with eleven snow days and ten delayed openings.

Above is a video giving you the highlights and below is one teaching you how to use it.  The latest addition to the service is that you can now text an attachment.  Of course you can use Tinyurl or Bit.ly to shrink a link to a Google Drive document which is what I often do. 

Monday, March 24, 2014

Pussy Riot on Colbert Report

I think it is fair game to assume that Pussy Riot or using it as an example of repression in Russia on one of the free response questions on the  AP Comparative exam.  Here is part one from their recent appearance on The Colbert Report and here is part two

European Energy Dependance on Russia

We just finished Russia in my AP Comparative class, but with the ongoing Crimea issue and its relationship to the European Union, we will probably circle back more than once.  For now, above is a graphic from the NYTimes (and accompanying article) on the dependance on oil by Europe from Russia.  It is somewhat staggering and explains the small measures instituted by the EU so far.  

Sunday, March 23, 2014

The College Application Process


This post is a little different than normal as it deals with the college application process.  But all of us are involved in it whether it is in writing reference letters, giving grades, talking to our students, etc.  The video above and this WashPost article that goes in depth on the college admittance process is very revealing and might even help you counsel students in the future.