Foreign Aid

Foreign Aid - Clean Version



Directions For Teachers


  • Divide your amazing/infuriating class into teams of 3 or 4


  • 100 pennies per team (ask the kids to bring in 33 pennies each). You will use the pennies all year. Fun Fact; Did you know that it costs about 1.5 cents to make 1 penny?

  • Post-it-notes (5 per team) You could ask them to bring these in, too.

  • Smartphones for survey completing and photo bombing (1 per team)

  • Blank Paper (4 pieces of paper per team)


  • 30 - 90 minutes - depending on how much of the lesson you cover

The Issue

Foreign Aid!

The Question

How much does the U.S. spend on foreign aid and how much should it spend?

Share Your Opinion

Here’s a question for you.


What portion of the US budget (the money our federal government spends each year) is spent on foreign aid?





Or less than 1%

Take our survey

Create your survey with SurveyMonkey

While you think of your answer let me say hi, welcome to GoPo Pro. Seat backs and tray tables should be in their upright and locked position prior to takeoff because today we’re going to learn all about the American political system. And as we go on our magical learning adventure, please keep in mind: 37% of all statistics are made up on the spot!

So back to the question: What portion of the US budget is spent on foreign aid?

  • 26%

  • 10%

  • 5%

  • 1%

  • less than 1%

  • Or more than 100% - wait!

And here’s one more question.

Which of the following best describes your opinion of how much the US spends on foreign aid?

  • Too Little

  • About the Right Amount

  • Too Much

  • Don’t know/Refuse to Answer/Hate you with fire and fury


By the way. Just to put this whole conversation in perspective. The federal budget is REALLY big. Last year, in Fiscal Year 2016 the U.S. federal government spent over 4,1 trillion dollars. That’s right. I said: $4.1 trillion.

$4.1 trillion looks like this: 4,100,000,000,000 dollars.

Which is the same as 4 thousand billion dollars plus 100 billion dollars.

If you really want to understand the magnitude of a number that large, check out this visualization.


That guy in red, by the way, should be cheering, not just standing there all slouchy.

Now multiply the amount from that image 4 times and you’re almost to the amount the US government spent last year. DANG JUDY!

Or let’s visualize it another way. Imagine a pizza cost 10 dollars! With 4.1 trillion dollars you could buy 410 billion pizzas. Or, even better, you could buy one GINORMOUS PIZZA!

That’s one hella pizza!

That’s one hella pizza!

Back to work. Let's get to visualizing the US budget. It’s penny time! You can play along at home.

Get out 100 pennies. If you don’t happen to have 100 pennies with you, get a job, slacker! Now, if you can't round up 100 pennies you can use 100 beans (dry please!), 100 scraps of paper, 100 flip phones, or really just about anything that comes in hundreds and you can get your grubby little hands on. I’m going to use pennies because that’s how I roll.

Gangsta Teacher be like, that's how I roll!

Gangsta Teacher be like, that's how I roll!

In our budget simulation, each penny will equal 1 percent of the US budget. That means that each penny is worth approximately $41 billion. I want one.

Now, get out a piece of paper. We need to put those pennies (or whatever 100 stupid things you have) into a circle on the paper. Arrange the pennies in a circle on the middle of the paper. Spread the pennies out so that they are touching but not overlapping each other. Pro Tip: one of your more anxious classmates will probably try to turn all the pennies facing the same direction - heads or tails up. Don’t say anything, but when they aren't looking, flip one of the pennies the opposite way-up, and see what they do. Repeat. Now draw a circle around the edge of the pennies. Remove the pennies. Try not to spend them all in one place.


Now before we get to the main event - foreign aid expenditures - let’s practice with our pennies on something else.

Imagine the circle represents all the money the US government spends each year (the budget).

Anybody know the biggest single expenditure in the US budget?

That's right, monster-claw person, you guessed it. Back in Fiscal Year 2016 the biggest single expenditure in the US budget was Social Security! And how much did we spend on social security? Drum roll please. Yep, you got it: One thousand three hundred and sixty nine billion dollars. Wow. 1,369,100,000,000 Washingtons! Boom! That's a lot of pizza!

See that dark blue part there in the circle below. That represents US spending on Social Security just in 2016.


That’s roughly 33% of the total budget!

33 is a special number. It’s about ⅓; it’s the age I’ve been for the past 16 years; it’s also the amount of revolutions per minute for an LP; and it’s the age when the following celebrities died: John Belushi, Sam Cooke, Alexander the Great - but not so great at getting old, The Rapper Big Moe, Jesus Christ, and Baseball legend Darryl Kyle. Oh, and Justin Bieber - he just hasn’t gotten there yet. Ouch!

Wait a second, you might say. Just what on earth is this social security thing we’re spending so much money on?

Social Security is the foundation of economic security for millions of Americans—retirees, disabled persons, and families of retired, disabled or deceased workers. About 163 million Americans pay Social Security taxes and 59 million collect monthly benefits.

Sign me up, baby!

Oh, and that's not a real card so don't go and print it out!

Oh, and that's not a real card so don't go and print it out!

Practice Makes Perfect

So just to make sure we are all on the same page. Put your piece of paper with the circle on your desk. Now put all your pennies back in the circle. Then take out pennies until the number of pennies that remain equals, as a percent of the total budget, what we spend on social security.

Survey says: your paper should have precisely 33 pennies in that circle. I'm getting hungry! Take out a sticky note or piece of paper and write “Social Security” on it. Now, take a selfie with the circle-paper and the pennies and the post-it not. Post that photograph on your Instagram feed #socialsecurityspendingofinstagram

Hello dates!!!! Now. wipe the pennies clean!

This time for reals

Okay. Now that you’ve got the hang of it, let’s try this again. This time we’ll consider how much the US spends on Foreign Aid!

What is Foreign Aid?

Funny, I just happen to know. Foreign aid is assistance we give other countries. Foreign aid is money that one country voluntarily transfers to another, which can take the form of a gift, a grant or a loan.

We tend to give foreign aid to poor countries or countries in crisis. Rich countries like Switzerland and Japan don’t need a whole lot of foreign aid. You don’t go around giving Dollar Store gift certificates to Millionaires, and the U.S. doesn’t give a whole lot of foreign aid to rich countries.

Screen Shot 2017-09-13 at 1.52.50 PM.png

In the United States, foreign aid usually refers only to economic assistance and military assistance the federal government gives to other governments.

Economic assistance includes all programs with development or humanitarian objectives. That tends to include projects related to health, disaster relief, the promotion of civil society, agriculture and the like. Most economic aid dollars come from the State Department budget, including spending allocated by USAID.



Military aid includes military financing, which our allies use to buy weapons, funding intended to advance counterterrorism and anti-narcotics initiatives, and money spent on efforts related to military operations in Iraq, Afghanistan and other nations. Most military aid dollars come from either the State Department’s or the Pentagon’s budget.



Here’s a list of the top destinations of US foreign aid.


When you put all US foreign aid together, foreign aid be like


Now it's your turn

In the circle on your paper, place the number of pennies out of our total budget that you think the average American thinks we spend on foreign aid. Did you get that? Not the amount you think we spend, but the amount you think most Americans think the US spends on foreign aid. That's complicated but you can do it!


Write the words “Predicted US Foreign Aid” on a sticky note and place it at the top of the paper.

Take a selfie of all that #fakenews Hello viral celebrity!

Okay. Let’s compare your fake guesses to the actual answers. Here’s how much Americans imagined we spent on foreign aid.


According to an NPR report from 2015, the average respondent estimated that 26 percent went toward assisting other countries.

What the what?!

If you put 26 pennies on the circle...Bravo - that's precisely the number the average American thinks we spend on foreign aid. And check this out - 10% of Americans think we spent over half!!!!!!! Yes over half of all our federal budget on foreign aid. Wow! That's like guessing that the average high school senior spends 90% of their time on homework.

Now. clear those pennies off the paper and get ready to rumble.

Let's try this another way.

Put the number of pennies on the circle that you believe represents the actual percent of the US budget that we spend on foreign aid.

Take a sticky note and write the words “Actual US Foreign Aid”

Get ready. Get Set. Lose!

This is from 2014 so the numbers are a little different from 201 but you get the idea.

This is from 2014 so the numbers are a little different from 201 but you get the idea.

That's right, the actual number is less than 1 penny! That’s right - less than 1%!

Is there anything less than a penny? Can you get out a little saw and cut off about a bit of that penny? Stop.

Last step.

Put one penny in the circle. Take a picture with the pennies, sticky note, circle, your best friends, your pet dog drinking a latte, and post it on the internet with #actualusforeignaid

Before you post this. Pro Tip - The internet remembers everything!

Now isn’t that interesting how far off reality can be from perception. If you were one of those people who guessed less than 1% you were right!

Chill! They rounded up!

Chill! They rounded up!

And now here’s another round chart that shows what happens when people learn about how much the US actually spends on foreign aid. And I’d like you to be honest, just this once, and think about how your opinion of our foreign aid spending has changed based on what you now know.


Let’s take that survey again.

Which of the following best describes your opinion of how much the US spends on foreign aid?

  • Too Little

  • About the Right Amount

  • Too Much

  • Don’t know/Refuse to Answer/You talkin’ to me?

Foreign Aid Questions

After they see the reality of foreign aid spending, the number of people who say we spend too much is cut in half. Meanwhile, the number of people who say we spend too little is more than doubled. So this raises a number of interesting questions. Please answer them.

  1. How much of your opinion about the world is based on facts, data, and reality and how much is based on hunches, guesses, and opinions?
  2. How democratic is our system if the people voting don’t know what we are doing and don’t support what we are doing when they find it out?
  3. Who is making these decisions about foreign aid spending?
  4. In what other areas are American policies this different from American opinion?
  5. What would happen if all Americans knew this information about foreign aid?
  6. Just what is this foreign aid for anyway? And who gets it?
  7. How has your opinion on foreign aid changed today?

Before landing. You might be curious how US foreign aid compares to other countries.

Final Foreign Aid Question

What portion of our GDP (that’s the total amount of money our country makes each year) do we give in foreign aid?

Here’s how our foreign aid as a percentage of our GDP (a country’s annual income) compares globally.

Screen Shot 2017-09-07 at 4.19.43 PM.png

In other words, if all our money for the entire year equals $100. We keep $99.87 and give the rest to the poor. Wow, that's generous!

Foreign Aid Points of View

Think about how different people would feel about the issue of foreign aid and complete our foreign aid points of view sheet.

Foreign Aid Simulation Time

Now before we are done let's get in teams of 4 and complete this Foreign Aid Simulation!

Expert Analysis

Before you form your opinion, check out what these heavy hitters from the left and the right have to say about foreign aid.


Jeffrey Sachs makes the case for foreign aid


Angus Deaton's surprising argument against foreign aid


Mike Patton links foreign aid and fighting corruption


Read all three opinions and share which you think is the most compelling argument and why.

Or have teams read one argument and share its central opinion.


Hey, y'all! This would be a great time for a fishbowl about Foreign Aid!


Write Makes Might

Now let’s end our investigation and synthesize all we've learned by writing!

Let’s start by writing. And here’s a pro-tip, not everyone actually agrees with you. Your job is to convince other people of the validity of your argument. Start by convincing yourself and then scale up. Here’s the question you’ll be arguing about.

Should the U.S. increase its foreign aid?

Write it out!


Lights, Camera, ACTION

One more thing. Knowledge is only as good as what you do with it!

So let’s take action.

Remember what you just wrote about foreign aid? Try to convince someone who can actually do something about this that your opinion about foreign aid is correct. Try sharing your thoughts with the President or Congress or the Secretary of State. You could also try to convince the general public and get them to convince their representative. Or you could form an interest group. It doesn’t matter what you do as much as that you do something. Remember, our foreign aid got where it is because people argued about it and someone won. Why not take a try at winning? Ready Set Go! When you’re done, share the result of your action with class.


Your Opinion again

Now that you’ve learned about and acted on this issue, share your opinion - retake our foreign aid survey.

Exit Interview

  1. How did your opinion change?

  2. In what way did your opinion not change?

  3. What do you know now that you didn’t know before.


I hope you’ve enjoyed playing with us. If you like this presentation please share it! And just think, if you share it enough it might just change foreign aid spending. Thanks for joining us, now please sit back, relax, and enjoy your flight! We’ll see you next time!


Actually There's More

If you dug our Foreign Aid Lesson you'll love our policy unit!

Unit 5 - Public Policy

All the lessons you'll need for student success with AP GoPo Policy! This unit contains lessons, handouts, review games, and all the ingredients for success in teaching high school students the key concepts of the US Policy making process. Plus - BONUS FEATURE - with purchase - All Access to interactive bureaucracy materials on the web. Check out this free preview of our Policy Unit!

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Make America ImmiGreat Again


The Issue

This morning, President Donald J. Trump ended DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals).


What do you think about DACA? And what can you do about it? It’s your turn to take part and act on your informed knowledge!

Share Your Opinion

Before we learn more about this, share your opinion - take our DACA survey.

Create your survey with SurveyMonkey


What Is DACA?

On June 15, 2012, the Secretary of Homeland Security announced that certain people who came to the United States as children and meet several guidelines may request consideration of deferred action (so that they are not deported) for a period of two years, subject to renewal. They are also eligible for work authorization. Deferred action is a use of prosecutorial discretion to defer removal action against an individual for a certain period of time. Deferred action does not provide lawful status.

Since it was first announced on June 15, 2012, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy has provided temporary relief from deportation, as well as work authorization to approximately 800,000 undocumented young people across the country. As research has consistently shown, DACA has not only improved the lives of undocumented young people and their families but has also positively affected the economy more generally, which benefits all Americans.

On September 5, 2017 President Trump rescinded DACA, ordering an end to the Obama-era executive action that shields young undocumented immigrants from deportation, calling the program an “amnesty-first approach” and urging Congress to replace it with legislation before it begins phasing out on March 5, 2018.

Here’s a VOX article: DACA Explained

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Video - Hurricane Harvey Hero now faces DACA deportation.

Read the story of hundreds of Dreamers (DACA recipients)

And watch this video about the effects of the repeal of DACA on Dreamers.

Here's an economic view of DACA from Marketplace.

Popular Opinion

According to an August 31 NBC News Poll, nearly three in four (71 percent) respondents, however, said they felt undocumented immigrants working in the U.S. should be offered a chance to apply for legal status, while just 26 percent said they believed those people should be deported.


Some More Facts About DACA

Here is a report on the impact to the U.S. of DACA from the Center for American Progress.

And this is the Pew Research Center's DACA Fact Sheet.

DACA FAQs from The Guardian

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Editorials - smart people with strong opinions about DACA

Brett Stephens - Only Mass Deportation Can Save America

David Leonhardt - Deporting Dreamers

Dale Wilcox - Why Trump Must End DACA

And even more writers from the left and the right weigh in on ending DACA.

Visual Opinion

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Do - Organize Your Thoughts

Complete our Dreamer Class Starter

Complete our DACA-ument worksheet

Complete our Points of View worksheet


Take part in our Dreamer Interview Project


Hey, teachers! This would be a great time for a fishbowl about Trump's ending of DACA.

636134612419171432301912506_fish bowl odessy.jpg


Write makes Might!

Now, let's take all that knowledge and our fishbowl discussion and write an argumentation essay: should President Trump have ended DACA?


By now you must have an opinion about DACA. Do something about it!

Here's a list of ideas for DACtion Share the results of your action in class or online.


Your Opinion again

Now that you’ve learned about and acted on this issue, share your opinion - take our DACA survey.

Create your survey with SurveyMonkey

Exit Interview

  1. How did your opinion change?

  2. In what way did your opinion not change?

  3. What do you know now that you didn’t know before.


You Can Learn More About Immigration in our Civil Rights & Civil Liberties Unit

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Confederate Monuments

Pros and Con(federate)s

The Issue

Unless you’ve been hiding in a cave or under a monument of General Nathan Bedford Forrest you probably know that there is a huge debate roiling our nation about the more than 700 monuments to the Confederate soldiers who fought against the United States in the Civil War. Some Americans think all Confederate monuments should be torn down, others want to erect new monuments to the Confederacy. What do you think? And what can you do about it? It’s your time to take part in this discussion by acting on your informed knowledge!

Your Opinion

Before we learn more about this, share your opinion - take our Confederate monuments survey.

Our Task

Let’s use the current controversy surrounding Confederate monuments as an opportunity to educate yourself, your community and take an informed action.

Some Opinions

Some other smart people have some strong opinions about Confederate monuments


Take The Statues Down

Let the Confederate Monuments Stand

And here's a great compendium of editorials on Confederate statues from the right, left, center, and from the past!

Popular Opinion


A Little Learning

Let’s learn a bit more about Confederate monuments before we do anything about it.

Confederate Monuments Fact Sheet


1. There are at least 1,503 symbols of the Confederacy in public spaces.

The study identified 1,503 publicly sponsored symbols honoring Confederate leaders, soldiers or the Confederate States of America in general. These include monuments and statues; flags; holidays and other observances; and the names of schools, highways, parks, bridges, counties, cities, lakes, dams, roads, military bases, and other public works. Many of these are prominent displays in major cities; others, like the Stonewall Jackson Volunteer Fire and Rescue Department in Manassas, Virginia, are little known.

2. There are at least 109 public schools named after prominent Confederates, many with large African-American student populations.

Schools named for Robert E. Lee are the most numerous (52), followed by Stonewall Jackson (15), Jefferson Davis (13), P.G.T. Beauregard (7), Nathan Bedford Forrest (7), & J.E.B. Stuart (5). The vast majority of these schools are in the states of the former Confederacy, though Robert E. Lee Elementary in East Wenatchee, Washington, and two schools in California (elementary schools named after Lee in Long Beach and San Diego) are interesting outliers. Of these 109 schools, 27 have student populations that are majority African-American, and 10 have African-American populations of over 90 percent. At least 39 of these schools were built or dedicated from 1950 to 1970, broadly encompassing the era of the modern civil rights movement. Fun fact: I taught at both Stonewall Jackson Middle School and Robert E. Lee High School (both in Texas). Jackson Middle was 99% non-white (in fact I only taught one White student there, and, true story, his name was "Whitey"), and Lee High School was 90% non-white, with over 1000 ESL students.

3. There are more than 700 Confederate monuments and statues on public property throughout the country, the vast majority in the South.

The study identified 718 monuments. The majority (551) were dedicated or built prior to 1950. More than 45 were dedicated or rededicated during the civil rights movement, between the U.S. Supreme Court’s school desegregation decision in 1954 and the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in 1968. The survey counted 32 monuments and other symbols that were dedicated or rededicated in the years since 2000. Many of these are memorials to Confederate soldiers, typically inscribed with colorful language extolling their heroism and valor, or, sometimes, the details of particular battles or local units. Some go further, however, to glorify the Confederacy’s cause. For example, in Anderson County, South Carolina, a monument erected in 1902 reads, in part: “The world shall yet decide, in truth’s clear, far-off light, that the soldiers who wore the gray, and died with Lee, were in the right.” Three states stand out for having far more monuments than others: Virginia (96), Georgia (90), and North Carolina (90). But the other eight states that seceded from the Union have their fair share: Alabama (48), Arkansas (36), Florida (25), Louisiana (37), Mississippi (48), South Carolina (50), Tennessee (43), and Texas (66). These monuments are found in a total of 31 states and the District of Columbia. Outside of the seceding states, the states with the most are Kentucky (41) and Missouri (14), two states to which the Confederacy laid claim. Monuments are also found in states far from the Confederacy, including Arizona (2) and even Massachusetts (1), a stalwart of the Union during the Civil War.

4. There were two major periods in which the dedication of Confederate monuments and other symbols spiked — the first two decades of the 20th century and during the civil rights movement.

Southerners began honoring the Confederacy with statues and other symbols almost immediately after the Civil War. The first Confederate Memorial Day, for example, was dreamed up by the wife of a Confederate soldier in 1866. In 1886 Jefferson Davis laid the cornerstone of the Confederate Memorial Monument in a prominent spot on the state Capitol grounds in Montgomery, Alabama. There has been a steady stream of dedications in the 150 years since that time.


The Confederacy: In Its Own Words

The desire to preserve slavery was the cause for secession by Southern states. But 150 years after the war, many continue to cling to myths. As recently as 2011, 48 percent of Americans in a Pew Research Center survey cited states’ rights as the reason for the war, compared to 38 percent citing slavery. This finding is all the more astonishing because a review of statements and documents by Confederate leaders makes their intentions clear. The following is a sample:


"We hold as undeniable truths that the governments of the various States, and of the confederacy itself, were established exclusively by the white race, for themselves and their posterity; that the African race had no agency in their establishment; that they were rightfully held and regarded as an inferior and dependent race, and in that condition only could their existence in this country be rendered beneficial or tolerable.”

Texas Declaration of causes for secession, February 2, 1861


“Our position is thoroughly identified with the institution of slavery — the greatest material interest of the world.”

Mississippi Declaration of causes for secession


“They assume that the negro is equal, and hence conclude that he is entitled to equal privileges and rights with the white man. If their premises were correct, their conclusions would be logical and just but their premise being wrong, their whole argument fails.”

Alexander H. Stephens, Vice President of the Confederacy

Cornerstone Speech, March 21, 1861


“Our new government is founded upon … the great truth that the negro is not equal to the white man; that slavery subordination to the superior race is his natural and normal condition.”

Alexander H. Stephens, Vice President of the Confederacy

Cornerstone Speech, March 21, 1861


“A geographical line has been drawn across the Union, and all the States north of that line have united in the election of a man to the high office of President of the United States, whose opinions and purposes are hostile to slavery.”

South Carolina Declaration of causes for secession, December 24, 1860


And here’s what General Robert E. Lee thought about monuments:

As for honoring the memories of honorable men, here’s what Robert E. Lee himself said about undue reverence for conflicts past: “I think it wisest not to keep open the sores of war, but to follow the example of those nations who endeavored to obliterate the marks of civil strife, and to commit to oblivion the feelings it engendered.”

The Map

Let’s start by learning about where Confederate monuments are.

There are over 700 Confederate monuments in the US today! Use the Confederate Monuments map to locate a confederate monument in your community.

You can learn about all this information and more at the SPLC Whose Heritage Webpage

You can download Whose Heritage? Public Symbols of the Confederacy

The Chart

Get local. Fill in the Confederate Monument Data Sheet below about a Confederate monument in your community. If there are no monuments in your community then you must not live in the South (like I do), and you can just pick any monument from the map and database.

Points of View

Pro-tip: there are other people in the world and they don’t all think like you.

As you think about the following actual and hypothetical people, consider how each individual would probably feel about a Confederate monument or statue. To convey their feelings, list one adjective or mark a frowny (anti-monument) or happy (pro) face next to each person.

  1. A 92 year old great grandson of slaves

  2. A member of the KKK

  3. Donald J. Trump

  4. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

  5. A mixed race child age 9

  6. 23 year old unemployed high school dropout who thinks he is white

  7. A 35 year old employed college graduate who thinks he is white

  8. 93 year old great granddaughter of slave owners

  9. You

  10. Your parents

  11. Your grandparents

  12. The great grandchild of a Confederate soldier

  13. A person your age and demographically similar to you, 30 years ago

  14. A person your age and demographically similar to you, 30 years in the future

  15. Create a hypothetical individual who would be most happy about the monument

  16. Create a hypothetical individual who would be least happy about the monument

Ponder On

We’re not done yet. Here’s some more questions for you to ponder.

  1. When were the first slave brought to the US?

  2. Why were humans used as slaves in the US?

  3. What were three major consequences of slavery?

  4. How much did the Civil War have to do with slavery?

  5. What do you imagine an Indian person would think of a statue or memorial commemorating their colonial British rulers?

  6. What do you imagine a Jew would think of a monument of memorial commemorating the Nazi generals leading the German Army in the Third Reich?

  7. What would you think of a statue commemorating George III, colonial ruler of the American colonies?

  8. Would your community likely erect a monument to a confederate leader today?

  9. Let’s say you support the idea of a monument to people who fought against the United States in the Civil War. Where do you think the most appropriate place for a Confederate monument would be in your community?

  10. What did you learn from the map of Confederate monuments?

  11. What did you learn from the timeline of Confederate monuments?

Share your answers in class and online #proconmon


Do something with your learning. Do one of the following and share your action in class and online #proconmon


Ask (in person or by sharing my Confederate monuments survey) 10 people to share their opinion about Confederate monuments. Share their responses with your class and online. Please try to survey a diverse (racially, religiously, economically - like the US) group of people and try to explain how demographics influenced your survey results.

Personal Reaction

Write an adjective or phrase that describes how you feel about the Confederate statue on a large piece of paper and hold it as you stand in front of the statue. Share your photo and your explanation for your feelings with us.

Community Reaction

Position yourself near the Confederate monument for one hour. Give 10 individuals a piece of paper and a marker. Have them write their reaction to the Confederate monument on the piece of paper and take their portrait while they hold the paper in front of the monument.

Contact the Media

Write a letter to the editor of a local newspaper/new website explaining what you think about Confederate monuments in your community or across the nation.

Contact the Government

Start and sign a petition or write a letter to the local city council/county commissioners explaining what you think they should do about Confederate monuments in your community.


Make a counter-monument. Imagine what a monument would look like to the victims of slavery. Create a textual or visual draft of a monument for these people. Share your draft or even better, create a monument and place it near the Confederate monument. Document this.


Educate your community. Create a pop-up educational platform (digital, a tryptic, a flyer, a poster, a handout) about the Confederate monument and the history of Confederate monuments. Place your monument near your community’s Confederate monument. Document this.

*These are tumultuous times. People have different and strongly held opinions about this topic. Your safety is important. If anyone is hostile, belligerent, or aggressive towards you or your work, do not engage with them.

Share your action in class and online #proconmon

Exit Interview


Your Opinion again

Now that you’ve learned about and acted on this issue, share your opinion - take our Confederate monuments survey.

  1. How did your opinion change?

  2. In what way did your opinion not change?

  3. What do you know now that you didn’t know before.

Share your answers in class and online #proconmon

GoPo Pro Toolkit Digital Version

Everything you need for success in AP Government and Politics in one digital download! Our GoPo Pro Toolkit takes you through an entire year of US Government and Politics lessons and comes to you right now in a digital download with a full year of lessons, handouts, reviews, and tests! All the files are in word format and ready for you in a digital download!

The GoPo Pro Toolkit includes all the following:

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  • Unit 2 - Political Culture
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Odd One Out

Odd One Out

Thanks for playing Triple O with us. Let's find the odd one out. We'll give you a group of four GoPo terms. You figure out which one does NOT belong.

Example A

a)    Judicial

b)    Legislative

c)    Executive

d)    Ministry of Magic

Very good, the answer is d - the Ministry of Magic is not one of the three branches of the US government, yet!!!!! Expecto Patronum!

Here’s another one!

Example A+

a)    Tree frog

b)    Bactrian Camel

c)    Anteater

d)    Donald Trump

Which one doesn’t belong?

That’s right. c - the anteater doesn’t belong. Anteaters cannot be impeached.

You'll get one point for the correct answer (objective) and one point for the most creative and ingenious answer (subjective). The teacher will give one point for each objectively correct answer, and, if you convince them of the merit of your (incorrect) answer, you'll receive bonus points for ingenuity and original thinking. Add up your points and crown a Triple O Champion!

Alright already, let's play!

Now let’s move on to the first and only round!

1. Which one doesn’t belong?

a)    Exercise

b)    Filibuster

c)    Establishment

d)    Commerce

2. Which one doesn’t belong?

a)    Cabinet

b)    Conference Committee

c)    Veto

d)    Filibuster

3. Which one doesn’t belong?

a)    Plessy v. Ferguson

b)    Miranda v. Arizona

c)    Mapp v. Ohio

d)    Gideon v. Wainwright

4. Which one doesn’t belong?

a)    1860

b)    1896

c)    1980

d)    1932

5. Which one doesn’t belong?

a)    FBI

b)    AMA

c)    NASA

d)    FEC

6. Which one doesn’t belong?

a)    Amicus Briefs

b)    Conference

c)    Oral Arguments

d)    Trial by Jury

Now I’ll leave you with this and I won’t tell you the answer. See if you can figure it out.


7. Which one doesn’t belong?

a)    Lobbying

b)    Extradition

c)    Concurrent Powers

d)    Interstate Commerce

Now it’s your turn to be creative/silly. In a team, make a list of four GoPo terms, three of which go together, one of which doesn’t. Share your list with another team and see if they can find the right answers. Then compile all the best team groupings and enter them into the form below!

Name *

We’ll share the ones that aren’t totally embarrassing on the world-wide internet.

You'll find all the answers to the game in the download below.

Democracy Inquiry

Compelling Question

What is democracy and how democratic is the US?

Democracy Quotes

Find your favorite from the democracy quotes below.

Democracy is the worst form of government except all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.
— Winston Churchill
Democracy cannot succeed unless those who express their choice are prepared to choose wisely. The real safeguard of democracy, therefore, is education.
— Franklin D. Roosevelt
Democracy is a device that ensures we shall be governed no better than we deserve.
— George Bernard Shaw
It’s not the voting that’s democracy; it’s the counting
— Tom Stoppard
Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There never was a democracy yet that did not commit suicide.
— John Adams
The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.
— Winston Churchill

What is Democracy?

Democracy Basics

Democracy Resources

Michael Mandelbaum: Democracy’s Good Name

Robert Dahl: How Democratic is the US Constitution?

Democracy Preconditions

What are necessary conditions for a democracy to flourish?

Fill out the Preconditions for Democracy form for your country

History of Democracy

Democracy Over Time

Samuel P. Huntington - The Third Wave of Democratization

Watch Democracy spread around the world in this one GIF

Democracy Today

Freedom House Democracy Data - Freedom in the World Interactive Map

Freedom in the World - 2017 Report

Here's a great NPR interview with Larry Diamond about today's rise of authoritarianism and fall of democracy

Compelling Question

What is democracy and how democratic is the US?


It's time to play BinGoPo!

2017 Jonathan Milner

What do you mean, Mexico's not going to pay for it?????

What do you mean, Mexico's not going to pay for it?????


BinGoPo Rules


Learn! Review! Enjoy! Win! Make Bingo Great Again!


1.     BinGoPo Cards

2.     BinGoPo Markers

3.     Electoral College Dropout Sign


Students will each receive one BinGoPo card. There are six different BinGoPo cards, and each BinGoPo card contains all of the 15 vocab terms below, but in different configurations:

Students may not use books or notes to play BinGoPo unless they really, really, really need to.

The day before you play BinGoPo bring a bag of dried beans (canned beans are tasty but messy) to class or have each student bring 15 dry beans or coins to class. Each student will use these materials to make 15 bingo markers. In a pinch you can shred up little pieces of paper for BinGoPo markers or declare yourself Czar for life and take a nap. You also need to make a sign that reads, “Electoral College Dropout!” that any student who calls, “BinGoPo!” incorrectly must wear all day!!!!

·      Gender Gap

·      Popular Sovereignty

·      Coattail Effect

·      Ethnocentrism

·      Fighting Words

·      Double Jeopardy

·      Concurrent Powers

·      Commerce Clause

·      Fiscal Policy

·      Divided Government

·      Senate Confirmation

·      Cabinet

·      Impeachment

·      Political Socialization

·      Judicial Review


Unless you are anti-American you know how to play Bingo: B29, G9, N22, etc. Well today we are going to play bingo for GoPo: BinGoPo! Instead of calling out stupid letters and numbers (where’s the challenge in that!?!), we will be calling out GoPo definitions, and students will be finding the term that matches that definition on their BinGoPo card! The first person to get four terms in a row is the winner!


Round One

Teachers will have a definition of each of the BinGoPo terms (see following pages). They will also have a list of distractor terms, terms that are NOT on the BinGoPo cards but sound like they might be-we don’t want to make this too easy! Without saying the term, teachers will read one definition to class at a time. When students believe they know which term matches the definition, they should place their marker- bean/coin/paper - on top of the term on their BinGoPo card. The first person to correctly get four markers in a row on their BinGoPo card should yell out “BinGoPo!” Have the students read off their answers to verify that they are the winner.

If a student says “BinnGoPo!” and they are incorrect have them hold an “Electoral College Drop Out!” sign all day!!!! The winner gets 270 electoral votes and  _________________.


Round Two

For homework, students make their own BinGoPo cards and 15 terms and definitions that they believe will be on the exam. Also have them make 6 distractor terms that are not on the cards! Use our attached BinGoPo cards as a model for the students. Students trade their cards with a classmate and check to verify that the terms are important and that the definitions are correct. Students turn in their cards to the teacher/regent. The teacher then chooses the best card and definition set and copies these cards for the entire class to play another round of BinGoPo.


Speed Dating Variation

Print out all the terms and definitions. Cut the pages so that each term is separate from the definitions. Scramble the definitions and terms. Give each student any 3 terms and any 3 different definitions. Make sure all the terms and all the definitions are distributed to students.

Students race through the room to gather all the definitions of each of their terms.

The first person to get all their definitions is the winner and wins ____________.

You can get all the rules & Bingo Cards in a handy printable download by clicking on the button below!

You can edit my BinGoPo cards or make your own BinGoPo cards here! If you have any fun variations of this game that worked for your students, or suggestions of other terms that you'd like to see included in BinGoPo, please leave them in the comments section below. And if you have evidence of any collusion between the Trump campaign and the Russians please contact Devin Nunes at

GoPo Pro Toolkit Digital Version

Everything you need for success in AP Government and Politics in one digital download! Our GoPo Pro Toolkit takes you through an entire year of US Government and Politics lessons and comes to you right now in a digital download with a full year of lessons, handouts, reviews, and tests! All the files are in word format and ready for you in a digital download!

The GoPo Pro Toolkit includes all the following:

  • Unit 1 - The Constitution
  • Unit 2 - Political Culture
  • Unit 3 - The Political Process
  • Unit 4 - Part 1 - Congress
  • Unit 4 - Part 2 - Presidency
  • Unit 4 - Part 3 - Judiciary
  • Unit 4 - Part 4 - Bureaucracy
  • Unit 5 - Public Policy
  • Unit 6 - Civil Rights & Liberties
  • GoPo Pro - All the tests and reviews for Teachers
  • Student GoPo Pro - Reviews & study guides for Students