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Politics Not As Usual

As one of the longest Democratic Party presidential nominations draws to a close, teachers and students are finding lessons of their own this election season, reports USA Today. At Chicago’s Senn High School, where most of teacher Jesse Sharkey’s juniors and seniors are Obama supporters, students wanted to know why Obama won 14 out of 22 delegate votes on Super Tuesday, but barely outscored Hilary. Sharkey said that student interest in the candidates and the election process created many “teachable moments.”

The apathy that previously enveloped students in recent elections has been replaced with a new sense of interest in and curiosity about the political process. Besides participating in classroom discussions on the election, some students are getting directly involved in the excitement. Sixth-grader Jack Greenberg of West Haven, Conn., is covering the election for Scholastic News and will blog from the Democratic National Convention in August. (Scholastic has already posted his biography here.) Over 100 high school students from Chicago campaigned for candidates in Iowa and New Hampshire as a part of the Mikva Challenge, a non-profit organization that encourages kids to get involved in the political process. “This has been the best election for civics,” says Brian Brady, executive director of the Mikva Challenge.

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