Elections Fall 2016

Welcome to class!

You will be able to follow the daily schedule of your class on this site. Each date will be written and the activities for that day will be added as we go.

For those students looking for more information on politics & government, to either refresh or learn for the first time, use this link.

News Resources for Students
Milwaukee Journal - Sentinel Online
CNN Student News
British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC)
New York Times
These are suggestions. If you find a good source let Mr. Weisse know and he will check it out and, possibly, add it to this list.

Latest Polls from 538

Previous Presidential Election Results from 270towin

Sept. 1
Opening presentation.
Here are the course expectations and the focus for this semester's class.
Truth or Lie? Activity

Students will look at where they are on the political spectrum using online surveys.
We will use the following document for a common language when it comes to political ideology definitions.
Student will then complete the first page of the following document on individual political thought. You have a copy you can type on in your Elections folder in Drive.

Sept. 7 & 8
History of Political Parties Activity and Presentation - There is a copy of this document in your Elections folder in Drive. If you do not see it in your drive make a copy of this linked document and place it in your Elections folder.

Sept. 9
We will finish the presentation on the history of political parties.

Sept. 12
We played a Kahoot to review the previous week's material. We then watched a video on the party conventions. Here is the video which provides a brief history of the party conventions. Here is a secondary video that is more about specific conventions and the impact they had on current conventions.
Students were assigned homework due Tuesday.
1. Read the following chapter on conventions.
2. Answer the following questions on the reading and a link provided on this document.

Sept. 13 - 15
The class will go over the homework from the previous day.
Students will explore the party platforms using speeches and the actual platform. Students will use the following document. This will take a few class periods. Students will watch / listen to the convention speeches and look at the written platform for each party.
The link for the Republican party is here.

Sept. 16
Students worked in groups to discuss how the parties (democrat / republican) tendencies impact how they view issues. Students used the work they did from Sept. 13 - 15. The class discussed some of the major ideas from that work.
Students were assigned a reading on third party candidate, Gary Johnson. Students also received a guided reading question sheet to complete for Monday.

Sept. 19
The class discussed the article on Gary Johnson from the New Yorker and 3rd parties in general. We looked at the purpose of the 3rd party; if a 3rd party could win or at least how a 3rd party may influence the outcome of an election.

Sept. 20
Students will read the following articles (BBC & NY Times) and answer the following purpose for reading -
Explain the potential impact of third parties on the 2016 election. Use evidence from the article to support your response.
The BBC article also has the rubric attached for the paragraph response to the purpose for reading.
We will also go over a review for the Sept. 21 assessment.

Sept. 21
Summative Assessment on Unit 1

Sept. 22 - 23
Students began to look at the primary process with the following document. Students filled out the document with the following reading.

Sept. 26
Debate prep. Students will fill this out as they watch the debate. Students will watch the presidential debate this evening.

Sept. 27
We discussed the debate using the document students filled out last night. Students determined the winner.
The assignment for tonight is to find an article that analyzed the debate.

Sept. 28
The class will use the articles they found to help us analyze the debate from numerous points of view.

Sept. 29 - Oct. 5
Students will view the PBS documentary The Choice: 2016. The video shows the history of each of the candidates. The purpose for viewing is -

Describe each candidate's history and the evolution of their political philosophies.
Students will write a summary of the film using the purpose for viewing as the prompt. The rubric for the summary is here.



Oct. 10
We discussed the 2nd presidential debate, how the "down ballot" races will be impacted by the presidential race.

Oct. 11
We continued our look at the 2nd debate. The conversation turned into a beginning look at the electoral college. We viewed the following video about the electoral college.

Oct. 12 NO CLASS

Oct. 13
We will continue our discussion of the electoral college. Here is a video from the NY Times and Mo Rocca - Electoral College 101
Students will also look at 270towin.com to check out what is necessary for the candidate to win the presidency.

Oct. 14
Students will begin to prepare for the Philosophical Chairs activity on Monday by using the following materials -

Electoral College Philosophical Chairs

Elections – Jacobson/Schill/Weisse
1. Read the First two articles about the Electoral College for background information.
2. Read the following four articles regarding the controversy created about whether to keep the Electoral College or not) Take notes below of the arguments made by the authors as to the merits and demerits of the Electoral College– cite at LEAST THREE of those arguments by providing the author/source.
3. Be prepared to participate in a Philosophical Chairs discussion regarding the statement below.

Does my vote count? Understanding the electoral college
by David Walbert

Where U.S. Presidential Votes Really Count: The Electoral College

Should we keep the electoral college system?

Hate our electoral system?

Reform Plans

Preservation of Electoral College

Oct. 17
We will meet in the community room for the philosophical chairs activity. Here is the activity document if you need to make a copy.

Oct. 18
Students watched campaign ads from years gone by on livingroomcandidate.org. Students evaluated the ads for their efficacy.
We used the following presentation to help students with understanding the ads.

Oct. 19
Students watched the final presidential debate of the campaign season.

Oct. 20
The class went over the debate from last night and then we watched more ads on livingroomcandidate.org.

Monday 10 / 24
  • Introduce the campaign/ad project
    • Storyboard
    • Script
    • Responsibilities
      • PAC name(“This ad presented by”)
  • WE Video / iMovie

Nicolet 2016 Mock Election
As part of Elections class, you are being asked to help run the school-wide mock election. The mock election will take place on Monday November 7th. Each student is expected to take part in the two major aspects of this campaign- first- students must with a partner or in a group of three, create a 60 second ad for their candidate. The Rubric for these ads is attached.
Second- students, in a larger group, must take part in creating a presentation (including the ad) and presenting to other social studies candidates on behalf of their candidate. These presentations are designed to convince student voters to take part in the school election AND to convince them to vote for a particular candidate. The presentations to other classes will take place on November 4th. .
As part of the presentation, the group must determine the major issues that they believe are the most important for this campaign (these can be specific to the state- or for the campaign as a whole). They should focusing on presenting these issues in ways that are persuasive- either by acting as the candidate, or as a surrogate on behalf of the candidate.
Things that you will be assessed on are:
  • Organization
  • Issues clearly articulated
  • Accoutrement-if wanted/needed (Handouts/Flyers/Stickers/Buttons)
  • Ads worked into presentation
  • All group members participate

Living Room Candidate (Ad website)

Tentative Schedule for 10/24 -11/7


Tue 10 / 25
  • Form groups based on Google form
  • Get in groups and begin brainstorming
Wed 10 / 26
  • Group work for ad-Script writing/Storyboarding
Thursday 10 / 27
  • Group will look at their candidate’s issues and see how they might include these ads
  • Storyboard work
Friday 10 / 28
  • Storyboard Due
Monday 10 / 31, Tuesday 11 / 1
  • Group work
Wednesday 11 / 2
  • Ad due at beginning class

Thursday 11 / 3
  • Classes will select best ads to show in social studies classes
Friday 11 / 4
  • Show ads to states- as part of presentation.

Monday 11 / 7
Election prep

Tuesday 11 / 8
Students wrote editorials as if each candidate won the election.

Wed. 11 / 9
Election Results
Here are a couple of articles related to the election.

One about polls - http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/elections/2016/2016/11/09/pollsters-donald-trump-hillary-clinton-2016-presidential-election/93523012/
Article using maps to show howhe won - http://wapo.st/2fDgdHs

Post election analysis

5 Reasons Donald Trump Won
from the BBC

Nov. 10 - 11
Exit Polls
Clinton Concession Speech
Trump Victory Speech

Nov. 14 - 21Students began the election autopsy. Students will determine the reasons for the election results. Students will be provided a chance to evaluate one of the following areas for this research - republicans and why they won and how to win in the future, democrats and how they lost and how they might turn it around in future elections, or evaluate a 3rd party (green or libertarian) and how they might obtain 5% of the vote next presidential election cycle.Students will work with partners or alone and will present their finding on Nov. 21.

Nov. 22 - 23
Students watch the documentary "Journeys with George". The idea was to see how the candidates engage with the press corps.

Nov. 28
Discussion of the documentary from last class. How did this election compare with what we saw in "Journeys with George"?We discussed a bit about Jill Stein's recount of WI.

Nov. 29 - 30
We discussed the 2000 election and the recount.

Dec. 1 - 6
Students watched the docudrama "Recount". Students were shown what the legal challenge and recount for the 2000 election were like in this film.

Dec. 7
Students were given an article to discuss the impact of the Supreme Court's decision on Bush v Gore. We also watched a 10 minute video from the NY Times about the possible impact of the 2000 election on voter ID laws across the country.

Dec. 8
Students will begin the research project on researching and writing on a historical presidential election and its impact on modern politics. The student guide for the research paper is here.

You will also need the following information - Elections students -


During the project you will find many sources & take many notes. Follow the instructions on the handout to sign into Noodletools.


You will need to enter in: Elections History Paper Weisse, to enroll in the correct inbox.

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Students will need to login to Turnitin.com and sign up for the class. Here is the necessary information to join a class on Turnitin.com -Class ID# - 13398949

Password - Football

Dec. 9