We the People: Students reflect on impact of class

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We the People: Students reflect on impact of class

Alexis Marvin, spread and managing editor

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If you haven’t heard of We the People or considered taking it as a senior, you’re missing out on a lot. It’s a class based on the Constitution, with roots in American history. It focuses on government, politics, our founding fathers, and controversial issues. The class begins the year by circling and discussing various issues and current events, such as Roe vs. Wade and immigration. Every person’s opinion is respected and, if disagreed with, discussed. Later in the year, the class is divided into six units, with each focusing on a different topic. Three questions are assigned per unit based on things that fall into their category. A four-minute paper is written for each, and after the paper is presented, each unit is asked six minutes of follow-up questions. At the state competition, the units are given points based on how eloquent and well-written their papers are, as well as how well they answered the follow up questions.

Now that we’ve discussed all the technicalities of the class, three students share their opinions on the class, what it’s like, and how it has helped them grow and improve.

Bailey Davidson: “I originally joined We the People because I absolutely adored Mr. Parrish and his creative ways of teaching American history. However, I became especially engaged when the entirety of the class took on highly debatable political topics, which also took on personal perspectives. Being open and circled together conversing, it almost resembled somewhat of a therapy circle. It felt that way, too. Preparing for the competition can be a bit of a bumpy road, but ultimately everyone shines in their prospective units. It’s an incredible experience, and feels like heading home to sixth period at the end of the long day. I’m extremely grateful for being a part of the class.”

Alexandra Stanley: “We the People has honestly been the best class I have taken in my high school years. Not only has everyone in the class grown to be friends, but we have truly embraced the family of friends idea entirely. Mr. Parrish has done an amazing job morphing a class with so much diversity and so many differing ideals into a cohesive class full of respect and dedication. We may not have won our competition, but we gained knowledge and skills that will last a lifetime. Win or lose we are a family, and that is worth so much more than any competition. Mr. Parrish deserves a “yeehaw” for how dedicated and passionate he is about this class, because without him, none of this would be able to happen. His endless motivational talks and effortless ability to make people laugh is something I will appreciate forever. If I could say one thing to upcoming seniors, it’s to take the jump and do We the People. You won’t regret it.”

Sidney Kugel-Humphrey: “We the People has become everything I wanted it to be and more. Since joining I’ve found a passion for government I never knew I had before. And not only that, I’ve grown so much, and I think we all have. We’ve grown into not just friends but a family. I never would have talked to half of these people without this, I never would be friends with so many people who I now look up to. I’ll admit on the day of the competition, I was scared. As we jammed out to music that my unit introduced me to, I thought about how I wished that time could have lasted forever. My fears were not that we wouldn’t do well, it was that I’d lose the bond I have with my unit. We surely are a motley crew, but we are one that works together, and one that I don’t want to lose. I hope my fears aren’t wrong and I hope I keep this bond forever, because in the end, it doesn’t matter if we lost by three points, it matters that we’ve become what we’ve become.”

We the People is a life-changing class, full of ups and downs. It is stressful to get out the papers on time and to prepare for the competition, but when competition day comes, everything becomes worthwhile when the class truly unites as a family.

 

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