2018 State Class Homework

Note: Students attending a class in a state other than their own need to do the homework for the state where they are attending, not the state where they live. For example, if a student lives in Idaho but is attending the Washington class, they need to do the homework for Washington.

Note: Students attending a class in Nebraska should complete the homework packets found here. DO NOT complete the homework below if you are signing up for a Nebraska class.


Four Day Class

First-time students

Download a complete 4 Day First Time Students Homework Packet.

Students should bring two copies of their completed homework: one to turn in and one to reference throughout the week. They should bring three copies of their bill.

Note: Students attending a class in a state other than their own need to do the homework for the state where they are attending, not the state where they live. For example, if a student is from Idaho but is attending the Washington class, they need to do the homework for Washington.

Note: Students attending a class in Nebraska should complete the homework packets found here. DO NOT complete the homework below if you are signing up for a Nebraska class.


1

Read Tim Echols’ book, Real Citizenship.

  • You can purchase a paper-back copy of the book online during the registration process or at teenpact.com/store
  • Tip: Try breaking it up into 4 or 5 sections and setting aside an hour each day for a week.

2

Send a letter to your state representative and state senator (not federal), thanking them for serving and telling them about one issue/idea you think is important in your state.

  • Need to know where to send the letter? Go to Project Vote Smart and search for your representative, senator and/delegate.
  • Remember to check your grammar and spelling.
  • In everything be respectful and address them with their proper titles (Representative, Senator, Delegate).
  • Mail them (no emails please) at least 2 weeks before the class to ensure they arrive in time.
  • Remember to pray for your senator and representative by name.
  • Tip: Try asking questions about their personal beliefs on specific issues or why they became involved with the political arena.
  • Tip: Remember to write your state senator and state representative, not your federal officials.

Purpose: to experience how easy it is to communicate to your governmental leaders and to participate in the process of making your opinions known.


3

Define the terms and thoroughly answer the questions on the Pre Class Vocabulary List.

  • All students will be responsible for this information on quizzes throughout the week.
  • Tip: Check multiple dictionaries to better understand any terms that you’re confused about. Think about how you have understood the term or heard it used and how that may differ from the dictionary.
  • Tip: Use complete sentences when defining each term.

Purpose: to be prepared for in-class discussions.


4

Write a one-page bill on an issue important to you and relevant to your state. Please choose a serious topic for the first bill; you may write a second bill with a fun topic if you choose. (Our Sample Bill shows a format to use.)

  • Include at least five sections in your bill: (1) the purpose, (2) the bill’s goal, (3) the plan of action, (4) when the bill will become law, and (5) how the bill will be funded. Check the Sample Bill to make sure that your format is correct.
  • Please choose topics that are appropriate for the age and environment of the class.
  • Tip: Think outside the box about issues that will spark conversation between you and your peers. Be respectful in your topic choice.

Purpose: to be presented before the TeenPact Legislature.


5

Complete the State Political Fact Sheet using resources on the Internet and in your local library.

  • You may have to use several sources to get this information: Go to www.state.xx.us (insert your state’s abbreviation in place of xx) to log onto your state’s official web site. (Project Vote Smart also has information on your elected officials).
  • If you are completing the homework before January 1, it is possible that some government seats may have changed because of recent elections. It is better to wait and complete the Fact Sheet after you are sure that all elections are over and the current officials are serving in their respective roles.
  • Tip: Remember to complete the fact sheet according to your STATE government information, not federal.
  • Tip: Don’t be intimidated– all this project takes is a little patience! Make sure that all of your information is up to date.

Purpose: to be informed regarding the current leaders and political trends in your state.


6

Memorize 1 Timothy 2:1-3 and Romans 13:1-2 using a Bible translation of your choice.

  • Be prepared to write them from memory when you come to class.
  • Tip: Find creative ways to memorize these verses. Start early and practice often.

Purpose: to begin the process of developing a biblical worldview on government and citizenship.


7

Read or watch your governor’s most recent State of the State Address. Create a list using the worksheet of the issues addressed by the governor in his or her speech.

  • You can usually find the speech on your governor’s web site under “Press Releases” or “Speeches.” In some cases you may have to call the governor’s office and ask how to get a copy. If your governor was recently elected or hasn’t given an address yet, use the last Address available.
  • Tip: Keep these questions in mind while you read/watch the State of the State Address. How does this affect your state? What does this tell you about your governor’s priorities? What key issues didn’t they address?

Purpose: to know the current issues in your state, as defined by your current governor.


8

Complete the Bill Analysis Worksheet.

  • Find and browse the list of legislation from your state legislature’s web site and print a bill of interest to you.
  • Analyze this bill using the worksheet given.
  • Tip: Thoroughly answer every question on the worksheet. If a question is not relevant to the bill that you chose, explain why it does not apply.

Purpose: to develop critical thinking skills regarding current issues and legislation.


9

Constitutional Analysis

  • Read the first Five Articles of the United States Constitution, as well as the first Ten Amendments (the Bill of Rights).
  • Choose three of the first Ten Amendments and answer the questions listed in the Constitutional Analysis worksheet in a 3-5 sentence paragraph.
  • Tip: Have a dictionary on hand to look up words or terms that you don’t understand.

Purpose: to better understand the Constitution.


OPTIONAL: The following assignment will give students a better understanding of the Four Day class, however is not required.


10

Campaign Preparation

During the TeenPact week we will hold class elections for governor and senator. Begin thinking about running, as it is a tremendous learning experience and a ton of fun! For those interested in running, we recommend that you:

  • Develop a campaign slogan.
  • Write a short speech on why you might make a good class governor or senator.
  • Think about a favorite Bible verse or message you can share with your fellow students.

Purpose: to be prepared for in-class elections.


Alumni students

Download a complete 4 Day Alumni Students Homework Packet.

Please bring two copies of your completed homework: one to turn in and one to reference throughout the week.  Bring a third copy of your bill.

Note: Students attending a class in a state other than their own need to do the homework for the state where they are attending, not the state where they live. For example, if a student is from Idaho but is attending the Washington class, they need to do the homework for Washington.

Note: Students attending a class in Nebraska should complete the homework packets found here. DO NOT complete the homework below if you are signing up for a Nebraska class.


1

Review the vocabulary and questions from the Pre-Class Vocabulary List

  • All students, first-timers and alumni, will be responsible for this information on quizzes throughout the week. Alumni are not required to turn in the vocabulary and definitions.
  • Tip: Review your definitions from last year.

Purpose: to be prepared for in-class discussions.


2

Send a letter to your state representative and state senator (not federal), thanking them for serving and telling them about one issue/idea you think is important in your state.

  • Need to know where to send the letter? Go to Project Vote Smart and search for your representative, senator and/delegate.
  • Remember to check your grammar and spelling.
  • In everything be respectful and address them with their proper titles (Representative, Senator, Delegate).
  • Mail them (no emails please) at least 2 weeks before the class to ensure they arrive in time.
  • Remember to pray for your senator and representative by name.
  • Tip: Try asking questions about their personal beliefs on specific issues or why they became involved with the political arena.
  • Tip:  Remember to write your state senator and state representative, not your federal officials.

Purpose: to experience how easy it is to communicate to your governmental leaders and to participate in the process of making your opinions known.


3

Write a one-page bill on an issue important to you and relevant to your state. Please choose a serious topic for the first bill; you may write a second bill with a fun topic if you choose. (Our Sample Bill shows a format to use.)

  • Include at least five sections in your bill: (1) the purpose, (2) the bill’s goal, (3) the plan of action, (4) when the bill will become law, and (5) how the bill will be funded. Check the Sample Bill to make sure that your format is correct.
  • Please choose topics that are appropriate for the age and environment of the class.
  • Tip: Think outside the box about issues that will spark conversation between you and your peers. Be respectful in your topic choice.

Purpose: to be presented before the TeenPact Legislature.


4

Complete the State Political Fact Sheet using resources on the Internet and in your local library.

  • You may have to use several sources to get this information: Go to www.state.xx.us (insert your state’s abbreviation in place of xx) to log onto your state’s official web site. (Project Vote Smart also has information on your elected officials).
  • If you are completing the homework before January 1, it is possible that some government seats may have changed because of recent elections. It is better to wait and complete the Fact Sheet after you are sure that all elections are over and the current officials are serving in their respective roles.
  • Tip: Remember to complete the fact sheet according to your STATE government information, not federal.
  • Tip: Don’t be intimidated– all this project takes is a little patience! Make sure that all of your information is up to date.

Purpose: to be informed regarding the current leaders and political trends in your state.


5

Read or watch your governor’s most recent State of the State Address. Create a list using the worksheet of the issues addressed by the governor in his or her speech.

  • You can usually find the speech on your governor’s web site under “Press Releases” or “Speeches.” In some cases you may have to call the governor’s office and ask how to get a copy. If your governor was recently elected or hasn’t given an address yet, use the last Address available.
  • Tip: Keep these questions in mind while you read/watch the State of the State Address. How does this affect your state? What does this tell you about your governor’s priorities? What key issues didn’t they address?

Purpose: to know the current issues in your state, as defined by your current governor.


6

Constitutional Analysis

    • Read the first Five Articles of the United States Constitution, as well as the first Ten Amendments (the Bill of Rights).
    • Choose three of the first Ten Amendments and answer the questions listed in the Constitutional Analysis worksheet in a 3-5 sentence paragraph.
    • Tip: Have a dictionary on hand to look up words or terms that you don’t understand.

    Purpose: to better understand the Constitution.


7

Research and write two essays (see details below) on the topic of US immigration. Our goal is to help you study, understand, and develop convictions regarding the role of government and your responsibility as a Christian and citizen of the United States of America.

United States immigration policy was first legislated by Congress but enforced by the individual states. In 1875 this changed with the passing of the Page Act, whereby the federal government took over regulation of immigration policy. A few years later, the Immigration Act of 1891 was passed to further enforce federal immigration laws.

When uniting the original thirteen colonies, the Founding Fathers of our country place a high value on the concept of “common interest.” Many considered this to be the critical component when considering the formation of the government and the success of the nation. Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, and James Madison detailed this position in the Federalist Papers, written to the state of New York in the late 1780’s. In 1787, John Jay wrote Federalist #2, stressing the importance of a certain national character derived from the homogeneity of its people.

However, our nation is more divided on immigration today than ever before. Immigration, both legal and illegal, is not only a highly debated topic, but also carries with it social, cultural, political, and economic effects. Immigrants and their U.S.-born children now number approximately 84.3 million people, or 27% of the overall U.S. population. It is estimated that just over 11 million of these are undocumented, illegal aliens, as reported by the Migration Policy Institue. (For further study, visit the Center for Immigration Studies by clicking here.)

How do these immigrants affect our society? What kind of influence do their cultures introduce to our country? What impact will this have on the unity our founders sought to create? Our government must develop a comprehensive immigration policy, but where do we start? With debate over border control, sanctuary cities, and the recent refugee crisis, we will explore key concepts such as national sonvereignty and federal jurisdiction.

The following assignents will direct your pre-class study and prepare you for in-class sessions. Throughout the week you will dialogue with your Program Director and other alumni students about your research, participate in a survey to discover general public opinion on these issues, and discuss what kind of immigration reform could viably take shape in the United States.

As you research this topic, consider the roles of government, church, family, and the individual. How should our Christian faith affect these social and political matters? We must develop convictions about what we believe, why we believe it, and understand how that affects our lives and communities. As renowned journalist Jim Lehrer once said, “If we don’t have an informed electorate, we don’t have democracy.”

Define the Following Terms:

  • Citizenship
  • Naturalization
  • Homogeneity vs. Heterogeneity
  • Assimilation
  • Amnesty
  • Chain Migration
  • Visas (immigrant and nonimmigrant)

Research the Following:

Part 1: History and Development

  • Federalist Paper #2 (1787)
  • Hart-Cellar Act (1965)
  • U.S. Constitution, particularly the 14th Amendment (1968)
  • Immigration Reform and Control Act (1986)

Part 2: Current Events

  • Refugee crisis
  • Sanctuary cities
  • Border security

Questions to Guide Your Research:

  • What was the original intent of the Founding Fathers in regard to immigration? Are those views still relevant today? If yes, how so?
  • What have been some of the major policy initiatives to shape the landscape of immigration in the United States from that time to the present? What key political figures were behind these policies?
  • Has our immigration system been largely successful or unsuccessful? What advantages and disadvantages result from immigration?
  • How has immigration impacted our society?
  • What is the goal of immigration based on biblical principles and consitutional values? Should the US be more or less selective with who can become a citizen?
  • In what ways could the current system be reformed?

Essays (500 Word Minimum):

  • Write one essay about the history of immigration and development of US policy
  • Write one essay about relevant current events and a suggestion for immigration reform.

Important Notes

  • Make sure to use a combination of sources (biblical, historical, and current) when doing research. Wikipedia alone does not count and cannot always be relied on as credible.
  • Print two copies of each essay. You will keep one copy of each for your own reference and will be required to turn in one copy of each essay for grading. You will not be required to submit anything related to the terms or research sections of the alumni homework.
  • Sources:

Zong, J., & Batalova, J. (2017, March 8). Frequently Requested Statistics on Immigrants and Immigration in the United States. Retrieved August 28th, 2017, from www.migrationpolicy.org/article/frequently-requested-statistics-immigrants-and-immigration-united-states


Optional The following assignment will give students a better understanding of the Four Day class; however, is not required.


8

Campaign Preparation

During the TeenPact week we will hold class elections for governor and senator. Begin thinking about running, as it is a tremendous learning experience and a ton of fun! For those interested in running, we recommend that you:

  • Develop a campaign slogan.
  • Write a short speech on why you might make a good class governor or senator.
  • Think about a favorite Bible verse or message you can share with your fellow students.

Purpose: to be prepared for in-class elections.


Political Communication Workshop

All students

Download a complete Political Communication Workshop packet.


Research and write a resolution stating a formal opinion on a current United States Policy Issue.

  • Be prepared to propose and defend your resolution with a 3 minute opening statement followed by questions, time permitting.
  • Bring two copies of your resolution, one to turn in and one to refer to during the class.

Writing the Resolution

The resolution should contain a purpose, a statement defining your opinion on that purpose, and a statement declaring what decision you would like the legislative body to come to regarding that opinion.

Gleaning from various resources, make sure to research your topic of choice before writing; it’s important to be equipped with a well-rounded knowledge of the issue. During the class, there will be time to analyze and further prepare your resolution. If you come across helpful facts, statistics, or resources, feel free to bring those to class for personal use.

What is the difference between a bill and a resolution?
A bill is a proposed change to law, whereas a resolution is a formally stated opinion on a matter that is proposed to the legislative body for the purpose of creating consensus.

 

Example Resolution topics

  • United States Interventionism
  • Universal Healthcare Reform
  • Flat Tax Policy
  • Death Penalty
  • Social Security Reforms
  • School Vouchers
  • Homeland Security
  • Iran Nuclear Policy
  • Illegal Immigration
  • Police Violence and Misconduct
  • … or you decide. Research and find your own topic.
Tip: Choose and issue that will spark conversation between you and your peers. Remember to keep all topics age appropriate.

Purpose

To be informed about current events, understand why the United States should or should not advocate its current policy, develop your own opinions about relevant happenings within our country, and to learn how to be comfortable and prepared to present your opinions regarding what you believe.

 

One Day Class

First-time students

Download a complete One Day First Time Students Homework Packet.

This homework is intended to enhance students’ ability to engage in the One Day class; however, it will not be graded.

Note: Students attending a class in Nebraska should complete the homework packets found here. DO NOT complete the homework below if you are signing up for a Nebraska class.


1

Memorize 1 Timothy 2:1-3 using a Bible translation of your choice.

  • Be sure to bring your Bible to class!
  • Tip:  Find creative ways to memorize these verses – i.e. using 3″x%’ cards as flash cards.

Purpose: To develop a Biblical Worldview of citizenship.


2

Write a one-page bill on an issue (serious or fun!) that you are willing to debate. (Our Sample Bill shows a format to use.)

  • Bring two copies of your bill: one to turn in and one to keep for your own use during the class.
  • Please choose topics that are respectful and are appropriate for the age and environment of the class.
  • Tip:  Parents, it’s alright for you to assist your child with this process. Help them write about the topic of their choice – something that an 8-12 year old would find interesting to talk about. Have fun with it!

Purpose: to be presented before the TeenPact Legislature.


3

Complete the Campaign Fact Sheet to learn more about the election process and the people involved in electing a candidate.

  • Bring one copy of your Campaign Fact Sheet to refer to during class.
  • Tip:  Talk with your parents about the different campaigns going on right now!

Purpose: To learn more about the campaign process.


OPTIONAL: The following assignments will give students a better understanding of the One Day class, however are not required.


4

Read chapters 2, 6 & 13 of Tim Echols’ book, Real Citizenship.

Purpose: to understand the necessity of being involved in your community.


5

With your parent’s help, write an encouraging letter to both your state senator and state representative to let them know you are praying for them.

  • Tell them that you will be coming to the Capitol – maybe they would like to meet you after the class ends at 4 p.m.!
  • Mail the letters at least 2 weeks before the class to ensure that they arrive in time.
  • Need to know where to send the letters? Go to Project Vote Smart and search for your legislators.
  • Tip: Be respectful and don’t forget to address them with their proper title.
  • Tip: Thank them for serving your state in this capacity, and tell them about one issue or idea that you think is important to your state.

Purpose: To experience how easy it is to communicate with your leaders.

Returning students

Download a complete 1 Day Returning Students Homework Packet.

This homework is intended to enhance students’ ability to engage in the One Day class, however it will not be graded.

Note: Students attending a class in Nebraska should complete the homework packets found here. DO NOT complete the homework below if you are signing up for a Nebraska class.


1

Memorize 1 Timothy 2:1-3 using a Bible translation of your choice.

  • Be sure to bring your Bible to class!
  • Tip:  Find creative ways to memorize these verses– i.e. using 3″×5″ cards as flash cards.

Purpose: to develop a biblical worldview of citizenship.


2

Write a one-page bill on an issue (serious or fun!) that you are willing to debate. (Our Sample Bill shows a format to use.)

  • Bring two copies of your bill: one to turn in and one to keep for your own use during the class.
  • Please choose topics that are respectful and are appropriate for the age and environment of the class.
  • Tip:  Parents, it’s all right for you to assist your child with this process. Help them write about the topic of their choice – something that an 8-12 year old would find interesting to talk about. Have fun with it!

Purpose: to be presented before the TeenPact Legislature.


3

Complete the Campaign Fact Sheet to learn more about the election process and the people involved in electing a candidate.

  • Bring one copy of your Campaign Fact Sheet to refer to during class.
  • Tip:  Talk with your parents about the different campaigns going on right now!

Purpose: to learn more about the campaign process.


4

Complete the Lobbyist Worksheet to learn more about lobbyists in preparation for the Returning Student Track.

  • Bring one copy of your Lobbyist Worksheet to refer to during class.
  • Tip:  Talk with your parents about the different kinds of lobbyists and how they impact our government. Do you know any lobbyists?

Purpose: To learn about different kinds of lobbyists and how they influence change.


OPTIONAL: The following assignments will give students a better understanding of the One Day class, however are not required.


5

With your parent’s help, write an encouraging letter to both your state senator and state representative to let them know you are praying for them.

  • Tell them that you will be coming to the Capitol – maybe they would like to meet you after the class ends at 4 p.m.!
  • Mail the letters at least 2 weeks before the class to ensure that they arrive in time.
  • Need to know where to send the letters? Go to Project Vote Smart and search for your legislators.
  • Tip:  Be respectful and don’t forget to address them with their proper titles.
  • Tip:  Thank them for serving your state in this capacity, and tell them about one issue or idea that you think is important to your state.

Purpose: to experience how easy it is to communicate with your leaders.

 

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