Don't miss one of this year's great teachable moments! Education World provides five lesson plans to help you drive home the importance of voting, teach about the process of creating laws, track election results and voter turnout, and teach students what it's like to make the tough decisions that elected officials make every day. Included: Links to more than a dozen additional election lesson plans!
The nation's airwaves are broadcasting ad after ad in which this year candidates for office kiss babies, tout their accomplishments, and make promises with seeming conviction All that hoopla comes to a head on Tuesday, November 6, 2012. On Election Day, it isn't about how many babies those candidates have kissed, though, it's about how many votes they get!
Below, explore classroom activities that capitalize on one of the most important news events of the year. Included are lessons that emphasize election vocabulary, the importance of voting, and the jobs that elected officials do.
Education World provides lessons to help students understand what Election Day is all about and prepare them to understand this year's election results. Click on each of the five lesson headlines below for a complete teaching resource. (Appropriate grade levels for each lesson appear in parentheses.)
What is a president?
Students learn the basics about this important job. (Grades K-3)
Design a presidential candidate
Students use art skills while thinking about the qualities and characteristics an elected official should have. (Grades K-6)
Understanding political parties
The class holds a mock campaign and election, helping kids understand why voting--and the ability to disagree with a candiate's views--are important rights for American citizens. (Grades K-4)
Election term BINGO
Test students' grasp of election vocabulary with a quick BINGO game. Student game card included. (Grades 3-12)
How laws are made
Invite students to create a graphic organizer to illustrate the steps elected representatives take to make a new law. Included: Student work sheet and role-play ideas. (Grades 3-12)
Picture this: Election results graphs
Students use art supplies or a free online tool to graph election results. Don't miss out on this easy-to-use tool with countless classroom applications! (Grades K-12)
Did voters turn out -- or are they turned off?
Encourage students to examine voter turnout statistics from the most recent election to learn which ten states have the best turnout record. Ask: How did your state do? (Grades 3-12)
Special interests: How would a legislator vote?
In this role-play, students are elected officials who must vote on five bills related to the special interests of groups that helped finance their campaigns. How will they vote? (Grades 3-12)