"We should discuss this in class. I feel like we don't get enough oportunity in school to talk about political stuff. Thinking can really get kids thinking and off their butt. It did for me. Also, here's the usury thing.
( I can't wait to go to class on monday! ;)"
The "this" he refers to is a pre-reading assignment I ask the students to complete before we read The Merchant of Venice. Students are asked to use an on-line debt calculator that allows them to plug in varying amounts of debt, interest rates, and type of payment to determine how long it takes to pay off credit card debt. This helps the idea of usury (charging interest on a loan) make a bit more sense to the students who for the most part are ignorant about most financial matters.
His comment, "I feel like we don't get enough opportunity in school to talk about political stuff. Thinking can really get kids thinking and off their butt" comes directly from a conversation he (and his book club) had with Cindy. He has repeatedly told me that my class is his favorite class because it makes him think.
I think it is interesting that he has interpreted credit card debt as "political stuff," but I also thought that it was validation for Cindy's research. Students want to be invited into conversations about topics that matter in the "real world."
Cheers to Cindy!