12th Grade Government/Economics
Instructor: Russell McKinney
West House - Room 2017
These courses will be a real world application of the study of Economics and Economics theory and U.S. Government. Students will learn about and study Economics and American Government by analyzing primary and secondary sources by further developing their writing skills, by taking on complex economic/government ideas and theories, and learning how economics and government applies to their everyday lives. The biggest skill that a student should learn throughout the study of social studies is that there are always more that one side to a story, or in the case of economics and government, more than one theory or idea about how a country’s economy or government should be run. Students will learn about the various types of economic systems and the various components that comprise an economy. Students will also learn about the American system of government, how it has evolved into what it is today, and their role within it. Students will be challenged throughout the year to come to their own conclusions about various economics and government topics in their assignments.
First semester will focus on the study of the U.S. Government. We will begin by looking at the foundation of what a government is and how the American system of government was created. Topics we will then move on to examine are The Constitution, the 3 branches of government (Legislative, Executive, Judicial), Civil Liberties, Citizenship, Civil Rights, Elections, how the government and economy are related, how state and local governments work, we will look at other governments around the globe, and most importantly how individuals fit into the American system of government. This course comes at such a critical time in a young adults life being that most seniors are 18 or will be turning 18 when they take this course, which means they will have the right to vote, their first real active part in government. This course is really the only time in their education where they will dig deeper than just the basics of the American system of government. My goal for students by the end of this course is for students to understand how the government works and how they can take an active part in it to evoke change, to use the laws set forth by our founders to protect themselves, and to help further develop it our government.
Second semester will focus on the study of economics. We will begin by looking at the fundamentals of economics to get students familiar with the basics and then we will dive in deeper into more complex economic ideas. Topics we will examine include various types of economic systems, demand, supply, pricing within the market, competition, market structuring, types of business structuring, types of labor and labor unions, money, banking, financial markets, economic growth and decline, taxes, fiscal and monetary policies, trade, globalization, and investing. My goal is to teach students what these things all mean and how it applies to their lives. Economics can be overwhelming for a variety of reasons but my goal is to give students a real world application study of economics so they can learn how various elements affect a country's economy. Giving students a better understanding of the economy that they are a part of also makes them smarter when it comes to their financial future.
There will be a variety of projects and assignments completed throughout both semesters that will help to further student understanding of Economics and American Government. They will vary in size being that some are simple and others are more complex but all of them will be challenging and will ask students to think outside of the textbook. Although the textbook is great, learning how to apply economics and government to their own lives is my goal for these courses and cannot be done entirely with a textbook. Studying economics and government is an ever-evolving thing because the topics themselves have the ability to change components on any given day. There are set projects that will be given throughout the semester but as things arise in our economy and our government I will develop projects as the course progresses to not only give students a real world application but to also make it as relevant as possible.