From up top, the fat man looks
like he could be one of them,
that they could be him some day.
Teaching 9th grade Government, most students can tell me that there is a thing called the Declaration of Independence, but have little idea about what that really means. It’s not just their limited historical context and understanding or the language of that document that presents a significant challenge to my students. The most difficult challenge that I see is a conceptual one. I find that my students often struggle to understand the very idea of independence. They want independence badly in so many ways, but cling to their dependence on others in so many different ways. I’ve chosen to take a new look at this idea in order to help my students begin to “see” and realize greater independence in their learning and lives.