AP U.S. History studies pop-culture


Alex Menache, Staff Writer
As the year is swiftly coming to an end and Advanced Placement (AP) students have finally showcased their talents and skills through the 2012 AP exams. Beverly students take a variety of AP tests ranging from chemistry and calculus to art history and music theory, each one requiring distinct knowledge and preparation methods, although the one thing that all AP students have in common is the exhilaration and relief of finally concluding the long and dreadful tests.
A common misconception is that after testing, AP courses solely consist of watching movies and having free time, but many teachers, including U.S. history teacher Dan Moroaica, have developed creative lesson plans that provide for a fun yet informative last month of school. Moroaica’s love of teaching does not stop after the AP; he continues to captivate his students with studies on pop culture including topics such as classic movies, video games and music groups.
“I realized about three years ago that students stopped caring about pop culture from before they were born. I found it shameful that classics of world history like the Beatles and ‘Star Wars’ were being ignored and I felt that not knowing this pop culture could put my students at a social disadvantage,” Moroaica said.
Some may ask how these topics relate to the course, although Moroaica makes sure to implement a historical tie to each discussion.
“We’ve been watching ‘Star Wars ‘as it relates to pop culture and it has been interesting to see its impact on people and the industry. It’s the first blockbuster and it even has its own ride at Disneyland,” junior Kimberly Montano.
Although it sounds like it would be easy, Moroaica includes notes, quizzes, tests and worksheets, hoping that it will help his students with social skills and critical thinking.