Have you heard of “Steam”?

I always love to share the awesome things my sons find on the internet so when I heard my youngest talking about a game called Democracy 3 and how he was thinking of just working on getting elected by pandering to the largest voting groups, I had to investigate and see if this would be something others would like to check out.

They found Steam years ago and have been playing games like “Besiege” for years. On that one, you’re supposed to build machines to win battles. Mine, especially my youngest, uses it to explore machine parts and better understand how they work. My kids have always been fascinated by machines of all kinds. With this game, they can build things they know and keep fiddling with it until it looks and acts like a real world equivalent. It’s pretty awesome to be able to do that virtually instead of in the garage. It’s cheaper and much faster to get a working machine. Much of what they learn there translates into better understanding of the cars and motorcycles they work on in the garage!

My younger son started playing Democracy 3 on Monday and it looks fascinating. He already has a better understanding of how political machines work and he’s been sharing it with us non-stop. Go check it out!

Town Council Meeting – Yucca Valley

What’s Jr. High or High School without civics, right?! And what’s a better way to take a look at local government than to attend a town council meeting? It may be far more interesting than a book or website! For those living in Yucca Vally, next week there will be a “State of the Town Address” at the regular Town Council meeting. Take the family and listen to what they have to say. Bring a notebook and take a few notes about what goes on and things you think about while you’re listening. It’d be great if the kids did as well! Then go out for dinner afterward and talk about it. What is the role of government in your town? Do you have a council or a board? Do you have a town constitution? These are things you can look up before the meeting. You can also do a bit of research about your town. When did it become a town or city? What is the procedure for doing that? When I moved to a small town from the city, I was amazed that there were still “unincorporated” areas of our county. I grew up in the city and just assumed the whole country operated the same way. Looking into your own town’s government and policies is a great way to start learning about civics!

From Yucca Valley’s website:

“Join Mayor Leone for the 2016 State of the Town Address being presented on Tuesday, November 15th at 6:00 p.m. in the Yucca Valley Community Center Yucca Room.

Mayor Leone and the Town Council will provide highlights of the past year, as well as a look ahead to upcoming opportunities and challenges.

The State of the Town Address is being held in conjunction with the regularly scheduled Town Council meeting. Light refreshments will be served.”