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 tell about American opinion on the federal government?

  3. Why do you think Americans have those views?

  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 the most favorable rating of any agency or department?

  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 are three things Congress can do to control these agencies and departments?

  12. What can are three things the POTUS can 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. How different were Americans' views of these same agencies in 2013* (See below) compared to now?

Visual Extension*

Screen Shot 2018-02-15 at 8.46.50 AM.png
Screen Shot 2018-02-15 at 8.47.12 AM.png
Screen Shot 2018-02-15 at 8.47.03 AM.png
Trust-1.png
Screen Shot 2018-02-15 at 9.29.43 AM.png

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 an 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.

T-Rextension

5c1272d606a12ff0bd37906ed527ce95--dinosaur-funny-t-rex-funny.jpg

Our World In Data Extension

Animal in Clothes Extension

5f4b73dbd85e358e241f7a4690878b5d.jpg

Gov Lov

What U.S. Federal agency is the most popular?

  1. How accurate was your prediction?

  2. What most surprised you about this information?

  3. Why do you think so many people have a positive opinion of the US Postal Service?

  4. What was the least popular federal agency in this list?

  5. Why do you think that is?

  6. Overall, would you say that Americans have a favorable view of federal agencies?

  7. What is one political consequence of this data?

  8. Is this good news? Do you even know what each of these agencies does? If not, educate yourself.

  9. What is your absolute favorite federal agency? Write a rap about it and submit it in the comments section below!

  10. We are about to enter into a period of divided government (whoot! whoot!). What impact will that have on the federal bureaucracy?

  11. The loss of which of these agencies would be the most damaging to the United States?

  12. According to this data, Americans seem to like most federal agencies. At the same time, most people hold negative opinions about the president, the congress, and the US government in general. Explain those seemingly contradictory positions.

  13. Why isn't NASA at the top of the list?

  14. Donald Trump has already announced a hiring freeze on almost all federal agencies. How do you think that will effect their ability to operate?

  15. No one enjoys paying taxes, yet 58% of Americans approve of the IRS. Explain this apparent contradiction.

  16. Over the 8 years of the Obama administration, the public's favorable opinion of these federal agencies generally increased. What effect do you imagine the Trump administration will have on the public's opinion of federal agencies?

  17. How do you think partisanship affects opinions of the federal agencies?*

  18. How different do you imagine these numbers would be in a one-party country like Cuba, China or Russia?


Learning Extension

Read the Pew report on Americans' opinions of federal agencies


Action Extension

Show 10 people a list of these ten agencies. How many of them can even tell you what each agency does? Ask them to evaluate each agency as favorable or unfavorable. Compile your data to show the aggregate opinion of each agency and compare your score to the American public's. Share your results online or in class.


Visual Extension*

Therapy Animal Extravaganza 2018

We’ll share photographs of our favorite therapy animals over the next few class starters. Enjoy!

Billion Dollar Baby

How many billion-dollar weather and climate disasters have we had in the United States since 1980?

  1. How accurate was your prediction?

  2. Describe one trend you see in the graph.

  3. Explain two causes of that trend.

  4. What is one consequence of this trend?

  5. Based on the fact of our growing coastal population, rising sea-levels, and accelerated climate change. Predict what this graph will look like over the next two decades.

  6. FEMA was created in 1979 by then President Carter. What does the U.S. Constitution say about FEMA and what allows the president to create such agencies?

  7. Describe how typical American liberals and conservatives would differ about programs like FEMA?

  8. Explain how much involvement you believe the federal government should have in disaster relief.

  9. How does FEMA’s relation to states during natural disasters exemplify federalism?

  10. Describe how federal, state, and local authorities responded to any natural disasters that have occurred in your state.

  11. In his budget blueprint for 2018, President Trump wants to reduce FEMA’s state and local program grants by $600 million. The budget also eliminates money for efforts to improve and redraw the nation’s flood maps and cuts about $90 million from the Pre-Disaster Mitigation Program. The program provides funding to local communities to move people to safer locations and to help rebuild schools, hospitals and police and fire stations so they can better withstand the impact of hurricanes and coastal storms. The budget released by the Trump White House in March cuts roughly 9 percent for disaster-relief programs across the Department of Homeland Security and other agencies. Explain whether you believe that cutting FEMA spending is a good idea.

2017-disasters_map_lrg.jpg

Learning Extension

2017 was a record year for weather and climate disasters. Read the government’s 2017 report on climate change and weather disasters.

Action Extension

Contact President Trump and let him know what you think about FEMA funding.

Personal Extension

North Carolina, where I live, is in the bulls-eye of Hurricane Florence. I’m 180 miles inland, so my main personal concern is lots of rain, but I have worked with many wonderful teachers and schools in the path of the hurricane. Wish them all well! If you’ve ever lived through a natural disaster send advice in the comments section below.

Screen Shot 2018-09-11 at 10.50.27 AM.png
Screen Shot 2018-09-11 at 10.49.27 AM.png


Baby You Can Regulate My Car

AP US Government and Politics

What has happened to the number of deaths per 100 million vehicle miles driven in the US over the past 70 years?

AP US Government and Politics

AP US Government and Politics

  1. How accurate was your prediction?

  2. What is the biggest surprise in this data?

  3. What is the big story this chart tells?

  4. Why do you think the death rate has been reduced so significantly over the past 70 years?

  5. Do you think we have regulated car safety enough or do you think we should continue to improve safety measures?

  6. If someone came from another country and asked you for your opinion on the government regulating cars what would you say?

  7. What impact did the introduction of the seat belt have on car safety?

  8. Based on this data, What would you say to someone who says that regulations don't work?

  9. Did you know that people actually argued against the government regulating car safety?

  10. Before 1968 there were no federal safety standards for cars. When I look back on this I think, that's crazy!!!! What do you think people in 70 years will think about the lack of regulations on guns in American today?

  11. Some people say that gun regulations don't work. Does this information make you feel like the U.S. should do more to regulate guns in America?

  12. The Second Amendment reads, A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed. Do you read the Second Amendment to outlaw regulations on guns?

  13. Of course, what you think about the Second Amendment doesn't have the effect of law. What group's opinion on the Second Amendment would have the effect of law? And what part of government would carry out any rulings, laws, or executive orders regarding guns?

  14. What are some things other than cars that the federal government regulates?

  15. Let's say you wanted the Congress to make a law regulating guns the way we regulate cars. What are the most effective steps you could take to try to influence Congress?

Learning Extension

Read this article on US government regulations.

Action Extension

A well regulated militia has the right to keep and bear arms. But you also have a right to life. Some Florida high school students have gotten fed up with feeling unsafe at school and have taken to the streets to protest. Do something about how you feel about regulating guns and share your action in class or online.

Visual Extension

Screen Shot 2018-02-16 at 3.18.53 PM.png
Screen Shot 2018-02-16 at 3.20.56 PM.png
Screen Shot 2018-02-16 at 3.21.01 PM.png
Screen Shot 2018-02-16 at 3.21.15 PM.png

T-Rextension

Funny-T-Rex-Picture-happy-W630.jpg

ICE ICE BABY

AP U.S. Government and Politics

What happened to the number of ICE immigration arrests in 2017?

AP U.S. Government and Politics

AP U.S. Government and Politics

Critical Questions

  1. How accurate was your prediction?

  2. What is the big story of ICE immigration arrests in 2017?

  3. Why do you think that happened?

  4. What is one consequence of this?

  5. Is this good news?

  6. Some U.S. cities have said that they will not assist ICE with immigration arrests. What does this have to do with federalism?

  7. Do you agree that cities should not help ICE with federal immigration enforcement?

  8. What is the overall trend in ICE immigration arrests over the past 8 years?

  9. Were average annual ICE immigration arrests higher under Obama or Trump? Seriously?!?!?

  10. What are the best two words that rhyme with ICE?

  11. How would the typical U.S. Democrat and the typical U.S. Republican respond to this data?

  12. What power does the POTUS have to control ICE?

  13. What power does Congress have to control ICE?

  14. What does this have to do with DACA?

  15. In what parts of the country did ICE arrests increase the most?*

Visual Extension*

Screen Shot 2018-02-09 at 8.33.16 AM.png
Screen Shot 2018-02-09 at 8.33.53 AM.png

Learning Extension

Read the article about ICE arrests from PEW.

Action Extension

Contact the President and tell him what you think about rising ICE immigration arrests.

T-Rextension

AP U.S. Government and Politics

AP U.S. Government and Politics

Presidential Nominees

AP US Government and Politics

After 6 months in office, President Barack Obama had sent 369 nominations to the US Senate, and George W. Bush had nominated 315. At the same point in his presidency, how many nominations had Donald Trump made?

  1. How accurate was your prediction?

  2. How does Trump's nomination rate compare to Obama's?

  3. Why do you think that is?

  4. What is one consequence of this?

  5. Of those nominations that Trump has actually made, about what percent have been confirmed by the US Senate?

  6. How does Trump's confirmation rate compare to Obama's?

  7. Why do you think that is?

  8. What is one consequence of so few positions being filled in the US government?

  9. Is this good news or bad news?

  10. What are some examples of the kinds of positions presidents nominate?

  11. Of all of the types of positions of presidential nominations, explain which you believe has the greatest impact:

  12. How does it benefit presidents to fill  positions in government?

  13. Who are some people who help the president decide on nominations?

  14. Why did the Framers set up a system where the Senate has to approve presidential nominations?

  15. Do you believe the Senate should be allowed to say no to a presidential nomination?

Learning Extension

Check out this list of all the Trump nominations for his presidential cabinet and read this fascinating Politico article about some Trump nominees who showed up for work before receiving Senate approval!!!

Action Extension

Contact the Trump White House and share your opinion about his nomination record.

Cute Animal Extension

Screen Shot 2017-11-27 at 11.17.18 AM.png

Disaster Relief

AP Government and Politics

How many billion-dollar weather and climate disasters were there in the US in 2016?

  1. How accurate was your prediction?

  2. What most surprised you about this data?

  3. What is the big trend in the number of billion-dollar disasters over the past 26 years? *(This data is adjusted for inflation.)

  4. What is one natural cause of this trend?

  5. What is one demographic cause of this trend?

  6. What is one consequence of this trend?

  7. Explain any connections between this data and politics?

  8. Is there anything the government could do to reverse this trend?

  9. If you were the head of FEMA (the Federal Emergency Management Agency) what political calculations would determine the number of disaster declarations each year?

  10. The Department of Homeland Security includes the Secret Service, Customs and Border Protection (Border Patrol), Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), Transportation Security Administration (those nice folks at the airport), Coast Guard, and FEMA. Which of these agencies do you think has the biggest budget?

  11. How would traditional liberals and conservatives differ on the role of the government in disaster relief?

  12. How do you think the Hurricane Harvey disaster will impact US politics over the next election?

sr-sandy-lessons-chart-1.jpg
US-Department-Homeland-Security-Spending-by-Organization-FY2007-thru-FY2016.png
Screen Shot 2017-08-29 at 10.55.21 AM.png

Learning Extension

Read more about FEMA and their role in disaster relief.

Action Extension**

Contact your congressperson and tell them what you think the government should do to help the folks of Houston.

rtx3dkue.jpg
hurricane-harvey-houston-street-ap-ps-170828_4x3_992.jpg

**I taught for four years in the Houston Independent School District in Houston Texas while my wife attended Rice University. Houston, the nation's most diverse city, is a tremendously welcoming, generous and vibrant place. In the midst of this natural disaster, Houston is in desperate need. Here's a list of ways you can help!

 

Bureaucra See Ya Later

¿What percent of President Obama’s cabinet appointments are female?

  1. How accurate was your prediction?

  2. What story does this chart tell?

  3. What trends (change over time) do you see in this chart?

  4. How did this chart surprise you?

  5. How did this chart not surprise you?

  6. What is 1 cause for the low percentage of females and minorities appointed to the cabinet?

  7. Why do you think President Obama has increased diversity in his cabinet?

  8. Write your own question about this chart:

  9. What is 1 consequence of an increasingly diverse cabinet?

  10. Is it good that White males are so vastly over represented in the US cabinet?

  11. In the comments section, describe what you believe this chart will look like in 2050 when Whites are no longer the majority:


Action Extension

Print out a copy of this chart, adding a final column: TRUMP (R) where individuals can write in their prediction for the % of minorities in a Trump cabinet. Share the chart with ten people and have them write in the % of a Trump cabinet that would go to women and minorities. Draw the average of the totals onto the chart, take a photo of the chart, and tweet it to @Classroooooooms with #trumpcabinet

Everybody loves Keyboard Cat

Everybody loves Keyboard Cat

Cabinet Meetings

¿What percent of President Obama’s cabinet appointments are female?

1.     How accurate was your prediction?

2.     What story does this chart tell?

3.     How did this chart surprise you?

4.     How did this chart not surprise you?

5.     What is a cause for the low percentage of females and minorities appointed to the cabinet?

6.     Why do you think President Obama has increased diversity in the cabinet?

7.     Write your own question you have about this chart:

8.     What is a consequence of an increasingly diverse cabinet?

9.     What will this chart look like in 20 years?

10.  Is it good that White males are so vastly over represented in the US cabinet?


Action Extension

Contact President Obama and based on the chart above, offer advice on his next cabinet level hire.

Death By A Million Cuts

¿What has happened to the ratio of government employees per capita over the past half century?

  1. How accurate was your prediction?

  2. What is the big story with this chart?

  3. What are two causes of the changes displayed in the chart?

  4. What are two consequences of the changes displayed in the chart?

  5. Is the information contained in the chart good or bad news?

  6. List three government jobs that you would like to see cut:

  7. List three government jobs that you would like to see NOT cut:

  8. Write one question you have about this information:

  9. Below, is another chart of some of the specific cuts over the past few years. In the comments section, describe how these cuts might have affected your own life.


Action Extension

Considering the charts above and some of the specific cuts in government employment that have occurred over the past few years, contact your president, governor, mayor, or any public official and share your opinion on the cuts.