AP U.S. Government & Politics

NO SUMMER WORK

Future AP U.S. Government Students,


There will be NO summer assignment, which I am sure you ALL appreciate. However, due to this being a midterm election year, I ask that you pay attention to the candidates and issues of the 2018 midterm election. If you will be 18 by November 6, 2018, you should be very interested, because you can vote in the election.


You will start noticing political advertising soon, whether it be on television, radio, or even on social media in the form of pop up ads and banners. Pay attention to the goals and strategies of the advertising.  Are they positive ads about a candidate or are they negative against a candidate? Are they asking for donations? Do you notice that certain sites have different candidates promoted? Who is funding these ads?  It usually says at the end of the ad or at the bottom of a banner. (ie. “I am Chuck Norris and I approve this message” or paid by Citizens who Want Peace and Happiness.) If you are interested in figuring out which candidate you support most, based on your interest in certain areas, there are a number of online quizzes that can offer insights.

In addition to matching you with the two main political party candidates, these quizzes can also match you with some of the minor parties, which we will be talking about in class.


I also encourage you to pay attention to the news and how the government responds to major current events over the summer. Every other Friday, or twice a month, we will post a current event article on our AP Government Discussion Board. We will utilize this tool to engage in discussion with classmates and follow what is happening around the world. Paying attention to the news through TV, newspapers, and social media will prepare you for these assignments and the class.


I am looking forward to meeting you all and having discussions and debates about the topics we cover. You will have more success in this course if you have an understanding of current events and an interest in thinking about problems and solutions. So I CHALLENGE those who have not thought about government, politics, or the world of policy to seek out information to be able to discuss these issues when you come back in August. Whether it is adding a news feed on your Twitter account, or pulling up a news site on a daily basis to read the headlines and the articles that interest you, there are many ways to engage with what is going on.  For those of you who are already interested, keep discussing policies and ideas with friends and family. Seek out those who may have a different point from you and engage them in civil discussions as well.


I can’t wait to begin the next year of AP U.S. Government and Politics. Each year is different and brings with it new discussions and personalities. If you would like to contact me over the summer to ask questions, I am available via email at rose_g@milfordschools.org.


See you ALL in August!


Best,


Mr. Rose

AP U.S. Government Teacher



AP U.S. GOVERNMENT & POLITICS

COURSE DESCRIPTION
AP U.S. Government and Politics provides a college-level, nonpartisan introduction to key political concepts, ideas, institutions, policies, interactions, roles, and behaviors that characterize the constitutional system and political culture of the United States. Students will study U.S. foundational documents, Supreme Court decisions, and other texts and visuals to gain an understanding of the relationships and interactions among political institutions, processes, and behavior. They will also engage in disciplinary practices that require them to read and interpret data, make comparisons and applications, and develop evidence-based arguments. In addition, they will complete a political science research or applied civics project. The different topics and concepts discussed in this course will effectively prepare students for the AP Exam on Monday May 6, 2019.   

COURSE UNITS 
The AP U.S. Government and Politics course is organized around five units, which focus on major topics in U.S. government and politics. 

The units are: 
  • Foundations of American Democracy 
  • Interaction Among Branches of Government 
  • Civil Liberties and Civil Rights 
  • American Political Ideologies and Beliefs; and 
  • Political Participation 
Foundational documents and Supreme Court cases are an integral part of the course and necessary for students to understand the philosophical underpinnings, significant legal precedents, and political values of the U.S. political system and may serve as the focus of AP Exam questions. The course requires study of: 
  • 9 foundational documents, including the U.S. Constitution 
  • 15 landmark Supreme Court cases    
PREREQUISITES 
There are no prerequisite courses for AP U.S. Government and Politics. Students should be able to read a college-level textbook and write grammatically correct, complete sentences.   

WHY YOU SHOULD TAKE AP U.S. GOVERNMENT & POLITICS
To gain a more in depth knowledge about YOUR country's government and the politics that drive it.  WE live in a politically charged world of competing parties, tea parties, rights for guns and civil rights for ALL, people going green, aliens in America, and Americans in the Middle East.  There is much to discuss about who WE are as Americans and who YOU are.  This class will be instrumental in helping you understand your views, your parents' views, your community, and to know WHY people believe what they do. 
 
ADVANTAGE OF TAKING AP U.S GOVERNMENT & POLITICS
This course is a bridge between high school and college.  It will certainly challenge you more so than any other course and that will give you an advantage as you head to college. The format in which you will structure your essays, prepare for assessments and engage in discussions/debates will prepare you for the multitude of academic challenges in college. 

HOW TO BE SUCCESSFUL IN AN AP COURSE 
  1. Come to class PREPARED with readings and notes COMPLETED.
  2. PARTICIPATE in class discussions AND debates. 
  3. REVIEW reading and lecture notes DAILY.
  4. FOLLOW current events through news, social media, etc.
  5. ASK QUESTIONS.
AP U.S. Government Exam - May 6, 2019 - 8:00 am

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