Students Test Executive Powers in Classroom Simulation

An American ship is hijacked by pirates off the coast of Somalia. Thirty hostages are held on board. The President of the United States must weigh his options, so he calls a meeting of his top advisers: Grade 6 social studies students in teacher Eric Velt's class, playing roles such as Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Secretary of the Treasury, Speaker of the House, US Ambassador to the United Nations and Speaker of the House. Students prepared recommendations based on their unique roles and understanding of geopolitical factors, past history and end-game scenarios. Playing the role of President, Jason Touvi, Middle School English teacher, listened and challenged his advisers, opting in the end for the diplomatic solution offered by Joel Camhi, who played United Nations Ambassador. This simulation helped our Grade 6 students acquire the vocabulary of foreign policy and diplomacy, and prepared them to argue future real-life scenarios in US and world events.
Grade 6 Civics at Scheck Hillel Community School provides a survey of the U.S. Government. Through creative research papers, projects, debates and films, students are able to understand the origins of U.S. democratic principles and distinguish the roles of the executive, legislative and judicial branches of government. Students learn how to be active citizens, with a strong focus on comprehension and analysis of current events.