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Why Teach Social Studies?

By: Brittany Yurkovitch on 8/5/2014

Don’t let them fool you, the internet is a powerful tool in the fight for liberty!

 

I know I haven’t posted in a long time! I have been very busy with a lot of things. I have a new job and other exciting things to share (which I will soon). I have been working on my professional portfolio with my lesson plans, resume, and other teaching things and getting ready to present at the Council for Economic Education on Project Based Learning in October!

I have decided to include the following in my portfolio:

 

Why teach Social Studies?

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Getting through the depression stage is tough.

By Brittany Yurkovitch on 2/18/2014

collapse depression

 

Teaching seniors in high school is interesting. As they ready to leave the despotic institution that raised them, I see many quarter-life crises erupt, especially second semester of senior year. Standing in front of the world of possibilities before them, many succumb to Stockholm syndrome, acting out in bizarre ways to keep themselves within the familiar oppressive confines the public school system has to offer.

I can’t say I necessary blame the kids; having some kind of quarter-life crisis is not unreasonable given the nature of public schools.

If I sound depressing, I apologize. I generally choose to be happy but I am struggling for it lately. My misery concerns the awakening that so many of us are going through at the moment. We who become awake to what’s really going on in our political and economic systems, go through the five stages of grief until we emerge as an awakened and empowered being. Although I have taken significant action in my personal life to become free of the chains that bind, I continue to waver through the anger and depression stages, and the depression stage is bearing down particularly heavy on me today.

The weather isn’t helping either. The past month has been cold, or snowy or just generally chem-trail dreary.  I have been quietly praying to the weather gods and goddesses for sunlight, warmth, and blue skies. Looks like I got what I asked for and ironically, this sunshine has worsened my mood.

Let me explain:

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Student Showcase: America, The Land of the Free Market?

By Brittany Yurkovitch on 1/30/2014

 

 

Happy New Year dear readers; what an interesting few months I have had with my students. My students participated in CSPAN’s student documentary competition. I wanted to increase my students’ chances of winning the competition so I scheduled a few interviews with some very important political figures in the area. Congressman Pete Sessions, Chair of the Rules Committee, and his primary challenger, Katrina Pierson, came to Berkner High School for student interviews.

These interviews were definitely eye-opening for my students and me. We spent weeks crafting well developed questions and retorts for our interviews. While both candidates were asked tough questions, Mr. Sessions was certainly challenged by the students’ scrutiny of both his voting record and his position on certain issues that no longer reflect the majority like marijuana legalization and non-interventionism in foreign policy.

One of my student groups chose to focus on the problem of free-markets and created a beautiful piece discussing the need for a return to free market capitalism. This documentary is well constructed and features interviews with Katrina Pierson, Pete Sessions, Jerome Stocks, and others. Please spread the word and encourage people in the 32nd Congressional District to check out these videos and inform themselves on the issues and candidates.

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10 things I learned from this crazy ice-storm.

By Brittany Yurkovitch on 12/8/2013

 

In case you haven’t heard, we in the Dallas area, along with much of the Midwest have been dealing with one of the worst ice-storms in years! Apparently several people have died and thousands remain without electricity. School was closed for two days, roads are iced over, trees have fallen, and most people are stuck at home; my husband and I have not left our property since last Thursday (it is Monday afternoon).

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New political cartoons!

By Brittany Yurkovitch on 11/30/2013

gmo causes cancer

Check out the new political cartoons in the artwork section!

All Politics is Local

By Brittany Yurkovitch on 11/18/2013

Last week, Richardson High School students overwhelmingly rejected a district approved guest speaker, the “bestselling author” of Christian inspired books on dating, Justin Lookadoo. Lookadoo caused an uproar among students which has now gained international attention. As a Richardson district AP Government and Macroeconomics teacher in Berkner High School’s STEM Academy, I am enjoying the teaching opportunity and I am hoping the district learns to do its homework a bit better before approving such an unpopular speaker. There are so many things wrong with this story, where to begin?

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Student Showcase: Support Rehashed Fashion and TranCo Couture at the Berkner Bazaar

By Brittany Yurkovitch on 11/13/2013

 

2013 Berkner Holiday Bazaar Ad  by Andrew Tran (3)

Halloween has passed and the weather is cooling down. It must be November which means that the Berkner Holiday Bazaar is right around the corner. I will be selling my Rehashed Fashion dresses and jackets and will have some 2014 calendars with my original political cartoons available for sale.

This year, I will be sharing my booth with the fabulously fashionable Andrew Tran, one of my most talented and creative seniors. He will be displaying his original TranCo Couture creations and will be costuming anthropomorphic models to advertise this event. He is also the creator of the awesome advertisement above.

The creative entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well at Berkner High School. Please support Rehashed Fashion, TranCo Couture, and the other local vendors at the Berkner Holiday Bazaar on November 23-24.

Debt, Denial, and Disgust

By Brittany Yurkovitch on 10/20/2013

collapse denial

Many of us living in the two political party paradigm smiled as they read last week’s debt ceiling headlines: A bipartisan deal had been reached and furloughed federal workers may return to work. Federal parks are open and White House tours will resume. Victory came in the 11th hour inspiring a standing ovation to House Speaker Boehner’s leadership qualities.

All is back to normal, nothing to see here.

These politicians are worse than high school students at grade time. Many students procrastinate until the grade window deadline approaches where they are forced out of denial. Realizing the impending deadline ahead, they propagate doom and gloom if you, the teacher, do not cave in to their demands. They will claim, “if you don’t take my late work, I will fail this class and won’t graduate.”

When the teacher says, “I’m sorry, you should have planned ahead months ago,” students bring their powerful interest groups to the table, the parents, to repeat similarly dire messages about how the sky will fall if you, the teacher, do not cave in to their demands. Parents will claim, “my whole family bought graduation tickets and is coming from out of state to attend, you have to let my kid submit 30 incomplete assignments for full credit or else my world will crumble apart.”

While this is a frustrating part of being a teacher, a good teacher will hold a firm line and tell the kid no or accept the work with penalties. It’s a sad reality but at least the education system is adequately preparing our students for a healthy career in politics.

And just like the students, apparently Congress can be bribed with a pizza party to perform their duties.

Unlike the happy sheeple in denial, the rest of us who believe elite power theory most accurately describes America’s current political reality are left a bit deflated and disgusted. A standing ovation for Beohner, really? For what, doing their jobs poorly while compromising their morality? For continuing to enslave future generations with unsustainable debt? I don’t understand what we are cheering for.

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Call me crazy, but I think everyone in Washington DC has gone insane.

By Brittany Yurkovitch on 9/8/2013

Do not criticize AIPAC!

It is becoming increasingly difficult to teach the various political ideologies to my new group of students. Liberals have been acting like conservatives, and conservatives have been acting like liberals. There are just too many lies and it’s all so confusing to the neophyte political observer. Even Matt Drudge acknowledges “It’s now Authoritarian vs. Libertarian. Since Democrats vs. Republicans has been obliterated, no real difference between parties…”

Matt Drudge is right on the money; there are no real differences between major political parties anymore. Recently, I commented on the lack of constitutional support on first amendment issues from powerful Democratic leaders. I would expect a neoconservative like Lindsey Graham to protest first amendment protections but not a liberal.

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Madam Feinstein, I’m slightly concerned for your mental health.

By Brittany Yurkovitch on 8/18/2013

Questions are good.

Dear Dianne Feinstein,

Recently, a former AP Economics teacher wrote a letter to the massive state surveillance system and since I know you introduced the last internet censorship bill, PIPA, voted to extend the Patriot Act, and introduced legislation to ban semi-automatic rifles or “assault weapons” as you masters of propaganda like to say, I figured I would address this letter directly to you. Hopefully, one of your cronies at the NSA can funnel this letter to you in case it ends up in your spam box.

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