Approval Ratings

AP U.S. Government and Politics

Happy POTUS' Day y'all!

What president has had the highest approval rating since 1946?

AP US Government and Politics

  1. How accurate was your prediction?

  2. What story does this chart tell?

  3. What do you think causes presidential approval ratings to generally decline over a presidential term?

  4. Which president had the steepest decline of approval ratings?

  5. Which president had the biggest increase in their approval ratings?

  6. How have rally points impacted recent presidential approval ratings?

  7. How do you imagine that generally falling approval ratings affect the ability of presidents to govern?

  8. How do approval ratings impact elections?

  9. If you were to add POTUS Trump to this chart what would his approval numbers look like?

  10. What does this chart tell us about the American public?

  11. Write one question you have about this information:

  12. Shouldn't you be out of school today?

  13. How are you celebrating Presidents' Day?

  14. How do you think Donald Trump is celebrating Presidents' Day?

  15. In the comments section, if you were elected president, what would be one thing you could do to immediately improve your approval rating, and what is one thing you could do to make your approval ratings immediately tank?

Learning Extension

Check out these Presidential Approval Ratings charts and story from the Pew Research Center.

Action Extension

Go to this interactive Wall Street Journal presidential approval ratings chart. Scroll through each president to see their approval ratings, and the inflection points where their approval went up or down. What generally causes approval ratings to fall and what usually causes approval ratings to go up? Contact POTUS Trump with one piece of advice about improving his approval ratings.

Lov Gov

AP U.S. Government and Politics

What federal government agency or department is viewed most favorably by the U.S. public?

Pew Research Center AP U.S. Government and Politics

Pew Research Center

AP U.S. Government and Politics

  1. How accurate was your prediction?

  2. What is the big story the data tells about American opinion on the federal government?

  3. Why do you think that is?

  4. What is one consequence of Americans having such favorable opinions of these departments and agencies?

  5. Is this good news?

  6. Are you surprised?

  7. Why do you think the Post Office won?

  8. Which of the agencies and departments listed above do you have daily contact with?

  9. How would you answer the same questionnaire?

  10. What do you think would be the agency or department that the public views least favorably?

  11. What can the Congress do to control these agencies and departments?

  12. What can the POTUS do to control these agencies and departments?

  13. Why do you think that 42% of people have an unfavorable opinion of the department of education?

  14. How different do you think Democrats and Republicans view these agencies and departments?

  15. Democrats and Republicans have exactly the same opinion of the Federal Reserve, yet they have very different opinions of the FBI. Why do you think that is?

  16. Do you think that most Americans even know what the Federal Reserve does?

  17. Do you even know what the Federal Reserve does?

  18. If you asked most Americans if they trust the government, only 18% say, yes. However, these same Americans have a very favorable view of much of the actual government. How do you explain this dissonance?

  19. Do you think the Trump administration is having an impact on Americans' views of the federal government?

  20. What do you think Americans' views of these same agencies was like in 2013?

  21. Considering that the Republican Party controls the legislative and executive branches. How do you think these views of the government will impact the 2018 elections?

Visual Extension

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Learning Extension

This cool new Pew report on American attitudes towards the government is about to be made into a movie by Disney. Check it out now!!!!!

Action Extension

Next time you have contact with the federal government (it could be your mail carrier bringing you mail, or that F.B.I. agent arresting you) thank them for their work for the federal government and ask them what people's attitudes are towards them. Share your thoughts about this interaction in class or online. Or, ask ten of your schoolmates their attitudes towards these agencies and departments and compare those results with the views expressed in the data.





Trump Budget

AP U.S. Government and Politics

What government agency is getting the biggest cut in the proposed Trump budget?

WAPO U.S. Government and Politics


U.S. Government and Politics

  1. How accurate was your prediction?

  2. What most surprised you about this data?

  3. Looking at the big picture from this data what would you say the president's priorities are?

  4. What question would you like to ask President Trump about this budget?

  5. What would the typical budget deficit hawk say about this budget?

  6. What impact will this budget, along with the recent tax cuts have on US government debt?

  7. Who will most benefit from this budget?

  8. Let's say you were a supporter of the Environmental Protection Agency and wanted to fight against the 25% cut to your budget. What would be some methods you could take to try to stop these drastic cuts?

  9. What role does the Congress play in the budgetary process?

  10. Amidst today's global turmoil with Syria, North Korea, and Iran (just to name a few) does this seem like a good time for a 23% cut to the budget of the State Department (which tries to keep us out of wars)?

  11. Do you think the average American believes that the environment needs 25% less protection than it did last year?

  12. Would it be fair to say that this budget will make America great again?

  13. FYI: this budget would also totally eliminate funding for the National Endowment for the Humanities and the National Endowment for the Arts. You good with that?

  14. Overall, what grade would the following people give this budget:

  • Donald Trump

  • A typical American Environmentalist

  • You

  • A State Department employee

  • The typical budget deficit hawk

  • The average Trump supporter

  • The future

  • North Korea

Learning Extension

See how each government department or agency fared under the Trump budget proposal.

Action Extension

Contact the White House and tell them what you think about their budget proposal.

Visual Extension

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Church and State and Church and State

AP U.S Government and Politics

Imagine the entire population of the U.S. is 100 people. Out of 100, what number of Americans would be Muslim?

AP U.S. Government and Politics

AP U.S. Government and Politics

  1. How accurate was your prediction?

  2. What surprised you most about these numbers?

  3. Based on these numbers, what generalization could you make about religion in American?

  4. Based on the data from this chart, would it be accurate to call the United States a Christian nation?

  5. If you were running for President of the United States and you had never been a religious person, but you needed to choose a religion to pretend to be to make the most people vote for you, what religion would you chose, and do you think it would work?

  6. How do you think these numbers have changed in the last fifty years and in the last 10 years?*

  7. How different do you think these numbers will be in the future?**

  8. How do you think the fact that 71% of all Americans are Christians impacts American politics?

  9. Is it reasonable to think that a country that is 71% Christian is going to have a high wall of separation between church and state?

  10. Fact: one out of every 100 Americans is Muslim. What do you think the average American would guess that number is?

  11. Fact: 23% of Americans are non-religious (unaffiliated). How do you think this growing number influences American politics?

  12. Of all the American religious (and non-religious) groups listed above which do you think the is most reliably Republican and which is the most reliably Democratic?***

Visual Extension*





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Learning Extension

The Pew Research Center has a great interactive map where you can look at the specifics of religious affiliation in your state. Check it out!

Action Extension

Talk to someone of a different religious background from your own and try to understand how their religion impacts their politics. Share your finding in class or online.

Valentine's Day Extension

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