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Alpha Academy - Session 2 - Government and Politics
With this past week being full of voting and elections we felt it was fitting that our topic for November session #1 was Government and Politics. During this session, our aim was to explain to our mentees the importance of voting as well as dive into our country's history with regard to voting rights showing them where we were vs. where we are now. We went over some of Maryland's current elected officials and discussed the structure of voting ballots as we passed sample ballots to the mentees and got their feedback. We then moved into discussing the United States constitution. We covered its purpose and its 3 part structure (Preamble, Articles, Amendments). Being that one of the aspects of the constitution speaks on the right to vote, it was a perfect segway into our next topic of voting in the United States. We discussed the timeline of voting rights in the U.S., touching on the amendments and Acts that were passed that changed who could vote and the limitations on minority voter groups, also known as voter suppression. We also discussed the branches of government and explained the difference between the federal government and the state government and the responsibilities for each. We also touched on the local government (Town/County) explaining to our mentees that local governments control Parks and Recreation services, Police and Fire departments, Public Works, and finances for schools and community projects. We felt it was important to explain to our mentees how their schools get their money, who the AA Co. Superintendent is, and who is on the school board, the Mayor, and city council. Our takeaways from November session #1 are; our mentees will be able to identify elected officials in their communities, they will understand the importance of voting, how to identify and explain the three branches of government, and how education works in the county and state.
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