This takes the cake: Oak Park High teacher cooks up a tasty US government lesson

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Creating a memorable lesson on how the three branches of the federal government work (and sometimes, don’t work) together can be challenging for a high school government teacher.

But Seth DeRose at Oak Park High School cooked up something unique for his students this week.

“High school kids always enjoy food,” DeRose said. “So I’m always trying to think of different, creative ways to get them involved -- besides looking at a text book or watching a video.”

DeRose had students bake an assortment of cakes (layered, marbled) to demonstrate, for example, how the three branches of the federal government interact.

“People always say that the legislative branch is the foundation of our government,” said Rebecca Sharp, a senior at Oak Park. “And that keeps it all together, so we have that on the bottom keeping the cake up.”

Some of the other tasty creations, like the marbled cakes, are baked-in examples of how the federal and state governments interact.

“So we wanted to apply this on a cake level,” DeRose said. “Either being a layered cake or a marbled cake, where sometimes it interacts well with one another and sometimes not so much.”

Sharp said the out-of-the-box approach to this topic will definitely leave a lasting impression.

“A lot of people don’t understand government through conventional methods, sometimes you have to get a little creative with it,” Sharp said.

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