Comparative Government

John Moyer

John Moyer entered teaching in 1990 for one reason- to positively impact the lives of young people.  29 years later- that mission has not changed, yet he continues to evolve as an educator. John firmly believes in helping his students think critically about the content of any course he teaches.  He is committed to helping his students to develop transferable skills that are taught and honed in the midst of course content.  Having been a former teacher and AP Reader in AP United States History, John currently teaches AP Comparative Government and Politics, AP United States Government and Politics as well as AP Micro/Macroeconomics.  Since 2005, John has served as both a Reader and a Table Leader for U.S. Government & Politics. Additionally, John teaches a course for aspiring student leaders and is currently employed as the District Leadership Coach for the Stow-Munroe Falls City Schools, where he coaches district leaders on how to improve their functioning as leaders.  

Course Description

John’s APSI Comparative Government & Politics course will prepare both new and experienced teachers to effectively teach the course. Institute participants can expect to leave the workshop more confident in applying their own educational philosophy to the successful implementation of this course. Participants should know that John uses an inquiry based approach and believes that his role as a classroom teacher is more of a consultant and less the deliverer of information. Participants should expect lively discussions and thorough coverage of: Syllabus preparation and submission; Course pacing; Successful implementation of equity & access as a guiding principle; Comparison strategies that are varied and adaptable; Various pedagogical strategies that focus on balanced responsibility; General political science terminology; Essential curriculum for the AP 6 countries; Resources for teachers & students; Exam preparation strategies; Writing, grading and scoring the FRQs; Pending course redesign details; Ways to “encourage” students to devote time to self study; Textbook reviews and recommendations; Lesson preparation and sharing of best practices; Teacher stress: “What’s really going on?”

Agenda

Day One

  • My Classroom Philosophy- “This Really Matters.”
  • Introduction to The Course
  • Equity and Access- Objectives, Challenges and Areas of Focus
  • The Course Outline
  • General Political Concepts (35% of course content)
  • Key Terms and their importance for analysis
    • Least You Need to Know- Classroom Activity
  • Application of the terms in country analysis
  • The use of terms in the Comparative Analysis
  • Top 10 Comparison Tools for the Political Scientist- Classroom Activity
  • Introduction to the “AP 6 Countries”- Great Britain, Mexico, Russia, China, Iran & Nigeria. (65% of course content)
  • Common sense ordering of countries
  • Fundamental elements to examine for each country:
    • History- What events? What to pay attention to?
    • Timeline of History: The Presence of the Past- Classroom Activity
    • Geography- What maps can tell us.
    • Geography is an Informer- Classroom Activity
    • Institutions- What you see is what you miss.
    • Where Power Resides- Classroom Activity
    • Sovereignty, Authority and Power- The tension between individuality and togetherness.
    • Historical Programming: More of the Same?- Classroom Activity
    • Citizens, Society and the State- Measuring Political Efficacy
    • The Influencers: Lessons in Leadership-Classroom Activity
    • Political and Economic Change- Primal Orientation
    • The Onus of Change: What Really Works? – Classroom Activity
    • Public Policy- Formal and Informal Power Networks
    • Essence of Scarcity: A Practical Application- Classroom Activity
  • The AP Exam
    • Format of Exam
    • Multiple Choice Questions
    • How General Political Concepts Are Assessed
    • Free Response Questions
    • 3 Types
    • How General Political Concepts are Assessed
    • Merging Classroom Activities with their tested requirements
  • Syllabus Development and Submission
  • Syllabus Requirements
  • Textbooks- Approved Textbooks
  • Course Audit- How to Navigate and Submit Syllabus
  • Exit Slip- One Day Down!

Day Two

  • Review of Day 1 & Exit Slip Takeaways
  • My Classroom Syllabus & Class Policies
  • Fundamental Elements to Cover for Each Country
  • History
  • Geography
  • Institutions
  • Sovereignty, Authority and Power
  • Citizens, Society and the State
  • Political and Economic Change
  • Public Policy
  • What I Do/Use For Each Country
  • Timeline
  • Maps
  • Tables
  • Charts
  • Graphs
  • Political Cartoons
  • Infographics
  • Articles
    • Foreign Policy
    • Economist
    • Washington Post
    • Wall Street Journal
  • Reading/Video Quizzes
  • Cumulative Testing
  • FRQ Strategies- Grading Sensibly
  • Country Study Group Activity- Specialization and Depth
  • Country Comparison
  • Great Britain v United States
    • Venn Diagram- Classroom Activity
    • Teaching Points- Great Britain
    • What are the 10 key ideas for Great Britain? – Classroom Activity
    • United States Comparison to 10 key ideas for G.B.- Classroom Activity
    • A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words- GB/US Comparison- Classroom Activity (or go ahead and write the essay…)
  • Mexico v Great Britain
  • What I Cover for Each Country- A Review. Additional lessons…
    • 2 Goodies and a “Baddie”- Classroom Activity
    • Say It With Food- Classroom Activity
    • Video Resources- Mexico & Great Britain
    • Articles- Mexico & Great Britain
    • Lesson Development- Intentional Activities: What is your “Why”?
  • MC Analysis- Mexico & Great Britain
  • FRQ Analysis- Mexico & Great Britain
  • Classroom Boundaries: “Where I End and You Begin”
  • Test Bank Development- Mexico & Great Britain
  • Exit Slip- 50% Progress!

Day Three

  • Review of Days 1 & 2 & Exit Slip Takeaways
  • Country Comparison
  • Great Britain v Russia
  • What I Cover for Each Country- A Review. Additional lessons…
    • Head of State & Head of Government: A Comparison- Classroom Activity
    • What are the 10 key ideas for Russia- Classroom Activity
    • Prime Minister- The Title Says it All! – Classroom Activity
  • Resource Research- Additional Resources for AP 6 countries (Set 1- Great Britain, Mexico & Russia)
    • Resource Research Presentation
  • Country Study Group Research
  • MC Analysis- Russia
  • FRQ Analysis- Russia
  • Test Bank Development- Russia
  • Teacher Community Page- Resources and Classroom Application
  • Linking Course to AP US Course- A Creative Solution
  • Course Redesign- What’s Coming and When
  • 2 Group Simulation Creation
  • Exit Slip- The Home Stretch!

Day Four

  • Days 1-3 Review; Exit Slip Takeaways
  • Country Study Group Research
  • Textbook Reviews
  • Country Comparison- Russia v China
  • What I Cover for Each Country- A Review. Additional lessons…
  • Russian and Chinese History: A Lesson in Parallels- Classroom Activity
    • Democratic Centralism: Motives and Reforms- Classroom Activity
  • Country Study Group Presentations (Great Britain & Mexico)
  • Country Comparison- Iran v Nigeria
  • What I Cover for Each Country- A Review. Additional lessons…
    • Religious Monotheism v Pluralism: The Ideal?- Classroom Activity
    • The Rentier State- What’s Wrong with Simplicity? An Economic Tale- Classroom Activity
  • Country Study Group Presentations (Russia & China)
  • MC/FRQ Analysis
  • China, Iran & Nigeria
  • MC/FRQ Creation
  • Country Study Group Presentations (Iran & Nigeria)
  • Additional College Board Resources
  • Questions/Final Evaluations/Certificates