Wednesday, December 9, 2020

izzit really happening? The last day? – Civics with Dean – Blog 7


I knew the day was coming - the last day of the quarter and my final izzit Civics class. We had prepared for this class the week before with reviewing what barter means [utilizing the Teachable Moment, "Barter & Entrepreneurship"]. In addition, we discussed how people “vote with their wallets”, and focused on "Consumer Choices Drive Price, Supply & Demand "[another Teachable Moment].


With a brief explanation of  restricted trade versus open trade, we began the simulation game Win-Win, found in's Educational Videos. Win-Win is a classroom trading game that gets every student involved. Through the experience of actually trading items, students learn important lessons about economics and trade. The real-life dimension of the game (that students get to keep traded items) engages them in a way few classroom exercises can match. [Pease see pictures]


After the allotted time to trade was up, the class discussed their experiences. Some traded to monopolize a particular item (candy), thus allowing them to clearly trade for what they really wanted. Others were willing to trade multiple items for the one they really sought, thus securing what they perceived to be a value. Finally, others chimed in that they saw the restricted trade first a hurdle in seeking what they wanted in a limited “pool” of items, but pointed out everyone was better off from trading and all ended in a Win-Win outcome.


As class was coming to an end, the final assignment was their post-assessment. In September, 13 students took the pre-assessment and 6/13 passed with an 80% or better [my standard for mastery]. This resulted in a 46% pass rate with no classroom instruction. On the post-test, 11 students took the test, and 8/11 passed, or 73% pass rate with 80% considered mastery. Some  questions and answers included:



1. Why are property rights important?

A - Private property is necessary for a functioning capitalist economy.

B - When you control your property, nobody can like the city in CT.


2. Name 2 rights in the first Amendment and why important?

A - Freedom of religion and freedom of the press - they are granted to us in the Constitution so government cannot dictate what we read and how we choose to worship.

B - Freedom of speech and press - The right to practice any religion YOU want without being told. Same with press, print without interference from government.


Overall, I am extremely fortunate to be back in the classroom utilizing ONLY materials and 25 years of award-winning strategies. The students taught me a few lessons as well - in a Covid-19 school setting, students are still relying more on digging deeper via research and exploration, critical-thinking skills, and seeing relevance in their learning to real-world applications.