My name is Melissa and I am a 12th grade Social Studies teacher in Cold Spring, New York. I currently teach 12th grade Government & Economics, Sociology, and AP Government and Politics. I have been teaching for 13 years in both New York and Pennsylvania. I grew up in Boonton, New Jersey and earned a Bachelors Degree in Social Studies Education at Ithaca College in Ithaca, New York. While teaching full-time in both Geneva, NY and Trumansburg, NY I earned my Master's Degree in Inclusive … read more about About Me
"I am not teaching about the impeachment inquiry. It's too political." These were words that came from an AP U.S. Government and Politics teacher on a listserve that I am on. I was shocked when I heard those words! My instant reply was, of course, I am teaching my students about the impeachment inquiry! Where else would they learn about it, if not in government class? I am a huge believer that we should not only be educating our students with content but teaching … [Read more...] about That’s too Political!
I don't know about you but I am sick of calling out sick! Between the stomach bug, mysterious baby rashes, flu, and teething fevers; sickness has hit my family. I have missed so many school days that I am about to run out of sick days. No idea what will happen if I need more days! My students are spreading sicknesses like wildfires between the flu and stomach bug. How are you making out with sickness in your family and school? I use these amazing videos as … [Read more...] about Mommy, I ‘m sick!
Engage your students as you get them up and moving with these US Homefront stations! Your students will analyze the US homefront during WWII and think critically about them as they move from station-to-station. Don't miss out on one of my best sellers that will surely help your students in your US History classes! ♦How it works♦ ✅Print the stations out (I recommend printing each station out on a different color) … [Read more...] about Teaching the U.S. Homefront during World War II
I always play Kahoot, Quizlet Live, and Socrative as games before a test but this week I did something different. I gave a test using Socrative and by the end of the period, my class knew their grade before they walked out of the class! Socrative is amazing for test review games but I use it for my tests. My students can scroll through questions at their own pace and when they hit submit they get their grade. All I have to grade is the short answer responses. My grading time … [Read more...] about Play Games in class
Engage your students with this interactive political -party webquest for AP or regular Government which leads them to think about and evaluate their own political beliefs! Students will consider which party's beliefs they share, and ultimately decide which party they will register with. This activity is adaptable, hands-on, thorough, and engaging! First, I have my students take four quizzes to help them discover which party they align with best! They write their … [Read more...] about Political Party Webquest
Every year when I teach my government class my students are super excited to learn about voting in America. I teach them about the voting process and how important it is to our democracy through this voting lesson. I can't think of a better way to get them civically engaged than to teach my students about the importance of voting, reasons why people do and do not cast their ballots, why low voter turnout is a problem, and how voting is essential to our democracy. … [Read more...] about How I register my students to vote?
https://youtu.be/IW5Ly3G8L-4 Whether you're a veteran AP Government teacher or it's your first year, you may become frustrated with what to teach or where to go. I've been there and I totally understand. Such a complex topic that is expected to earn students college credit can be a daunting task to teach. This is why I've made my entire AP Government course available for you! Before I get into the specifics, I want to tell you why you should take a look to purchase … [Read more...] about How to Make your Life Easier with an AP Government Course
Don't risk disengaging your students with a "boring" George Washington activity or lesson! Even in high school, students need to get up and moving; this helps build critical thinking skills and caters to kinesthetic learners. My best-selling George Washington activity involves stations/centers to build background knowledge or apply skills. Students thoroughly enjoy getting up to move and apply higher order thinking to the different centers about George Washington. Each … [Read more...] about How to Engage High School Students with Stations: George Washington Activity
Do you want to engage your students in social studies? Would you like to get them out of their seats and moving around? Do you want them to critically analyze your content? The answer to all of these questions is a station lesson! From middle school to AP classes station lessons are sure to engage, encourage participation, and motivate your students in any subject area. Stations are embedded in many of the units I teach, and I’ve even used them to earn “highly … [Read more...] about Have Total Engagement in High School with Stations Lessons
I remember 9/11/01 like it was yesterday! I was sitting in my 10th-grade government class and I remember watching the 2nd plane hit the tower on the TV. I distinctly remember the classroom phone ringing calling my classmates out of school because their parents worked in the World Trade Center. I still twitch when I hear the phone ring in my classroom today. We lost 10 people in my town on that day. Every year since that day, I swore to myself that I would teach … [Read more...] about Teaching 9/11/01 as a Historical Event!
Over the past decade, the No Child Left Behind Act and Common Core have created a new era of student and teacher accountability. Teachers have been asked to improve student achievement and test scores across all demographic groups and income levels. According to Striving for Student Success: A Model of Shared Accountability (PDF), "[i]n the current school reform atmosphere, in which individual schools and teachers are being judged by their own students' outcomes, this notion … [Read more...] about Use PBL to Inspire Passion and Teach Lifelong Learning