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  Workshop 2: Electoral Politics  
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Workshop 2

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Student Perspectives: Learning civics

Tremayne: In my opinion, knowledge is power. Once you have this knowledge, you can pass it on. It’s like a disease. So I have adults who don’t know the things that I know about the campaign. If I can pass it on to them they can pass it on to their kids or their parents and hopefully everybody will know. That way they can make a knowledgeable decision about whom they want to vote for.

Maysa: As a citizen, I think one of the most important responsibilities is reaching out to who is in charge. If they don’t know what you want for the city or what you need for your city, then they don’t know what to do for your city. If you feel that drugs and violence are major issues around your community, they need to know. So I think it is your responsibility to reach out to them and tell them what is going on.

Ebony: Civics education is important because a lot of people don’t know what is going on in the world around them. The civics education we receive gives us a chance to realize who is leading us, why, and who can change things. You get a chance to learn that your opinion and your views do count in society.

Merissa: Before the class, I didn’t know a lot about racial discrimination or gender discrimination or even housing in Newark. This class has helped me. It’s opened my mind. It’s expanded my mind. I think that it’s excellent.

Ebony: My mom, she doesn’t talk about politics, even though, if you bring it up, she’ll show you she knows something about it. My dad, on the other hand, he does a lot of talking about it and I can actually understand now. He used to say stuff like big words. I didn’t know what he was talking about, but now, since I am learning stuff, it is easier for me. When [candidates’ commercials] come on TV, I can understand and relate and see how campaigning actually works. It is interesting and it does give you some knowledge.

Samuel: I believe studying civics will make me more aware as a citizen because I’ll know how the system works. I will have a good idea of how to exact change and better a situation if there is a problem. So in that sense, I say it made me a better citizen and it gave me a better way of thinking of things around me so when I see something, I will be able to understand. I will be able to draw information.


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