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Primaries, Voting, and Elections



Education World looks at decisions of primary importance and elects to explore the voting process! Lesson plans, Internet sites, and curriculum ideas will help your students understand the impact of this year's Election.

Lesson Plans

The Election: Classroom Activities
The primaries and the political conventions are behind us now. The election campaign and the vote lie ahead. The lessons in this Education World resource are aimed at helping teachers capitalize on this once-every-four-years "teachable moment." Included:

The Election: More Classroom Activities
In the classroom, teachers this fall have a unique opportunity to teach about elections and the election process, current issues, the importance of making informed decisions, and the importance of voting. Education World offers ten teaching activities.

Make Classroom Connections to This Year's Elections
Use these five activities to drive home the importance of voting, teach about the process of creating laws, track election results and voter turnout, and teach students what its like to make the tough decisions that elected officials make every day. Plus links to a dozen more election lesson plans.

Election Templates
Students and teachers can use these completely editable templates to track the issues of this election and the results. Included: Electoral and Popular Vote Tally work sheets, a Candidate Position graphic organizer, a Campaign Timeline, a Presidential Order of Succession printable, and a rubric for scoring student debates.

Election WebQuest
In this Education World WebQuest, students research candidates and issues to answer the question, Which candidate would you vote for? During a weekly classroom "press conference," students share what they learn and debate the issues as the election season rolls on. Students can educate their parents by researching important issues and creating a fact sheet to send home. Included: Students vote at the start and end of this WebQuest. Did the knowledge they gained change their votes?

Sites to See: Political Science
Political science sites offer information and resources related to the study of politics and government. The sites provide information about past and current elections, public policy, international relations, and current affairs, as well as photographs, historically important papers, and audio/video clips.

Inform Your Vote
Do your students voice support for one candidate or another in this year's presidential election? Do you wonder what their support is based on? Offer students a chance to weigh in on the issues, and compare their positions with that of the two party candidates.

Electing a President: Lessons for Teaching About the Presidential Primaries
Candidates are crisscrossing the country in a quest for the votes that will put their name on the presidential ballot in November. Capitalize on this "teachable moment" with five lessons that teach about the process and engage students in learning about it.

Strategies for Teaching About the Election
Teachers across the United States are using news stories about the upcoming national election as a timely lesson in citizenship. But don't forget one other tool for teaching citizenship and critical thinking -- newspaper editorial cartoons.

More from the Education World Archives

Voting for Mascots Teaches About Elections, Inspires Fun
Three schools have used a powerful process that mirrors the presidential electoral process to choose candidates and vote for a school mascot -- a representative symbol that will encourage, inspire, and sometimes entertain them for years to come.

Elections, Voting in Words a Kid Can Understand
The vocabulary and idiosyncrasies that surround voting and the election process are difficult for adults to grasp. In America Votes: How Our President is Elected, Linda Granfield explains the whole process in words any fifth grader will understand.

Use Editorial Cartoons to Teach About Elections Past and Present
Wise teachers around the United States are using news stories about the upcoming national election as a timely lesson in citizenship. But don't forget one other tool for teaching citizenship and critical thinking -- newspaper editorial cartoons. Bring the power of editorial cartoons -- the strength of their images and the power of their messages -- into your classroom.

U.S. Presidents on the Internet
The presidents have a huge presence on the Internet. Biographical, historical, and political resources abound. Looking for photos, autographs, lists, trivia? It's all there!

America's Freedom Documents
Education World presents ten lesson plans for teaching about three important freedom documents -- the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights. Included: Involve students in creating timelines and posters, writing new amendments, and more.

Why Teach Current Events?
Why bother teaching current events? The research indicates that a regular dose of current events has a multitude of benefits. Included: Activity ideas and Internet resources for teaching current events.

Related Resources From Education World:

Elections and Our Government -- In Words a Third Grader Can Understand!
Two children's books help make the complex workings of the government accessible, understandable, and -- believe it or not -- fun!

Sites for Teaching About...Elections
Education World's Great Sites for Teaching About ... page highlights Web sites to help educators work timely themes into their lessons. Internet educator Walter McKenzie selected the ten sites listed below, which are among the best on the Web for teaching about elections.

More Sites for Teaching About...Elections
More Great Sites for Teaching About... page highlights Web sites to help educators work timely themes into their lessons. This week's sites are among the best on the Web for teaching about Election 2004.

Reviewed Resources for Teachers and Students

Core Documents of Democracy
This United States Government Printing Office site provides access to legislative, regulatory, demographic and economic documentation about and from the United States government.

Project Vote Smart
Project Vote Smart is a non-partisan Web site that covers government, policy making, and the political process. Teachers can receive free educational guides as well as lesson plans and activities.

 

Updated 2/15/2012

 

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