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Eight Lesson Plans for Election Season 

As schools around the country will learn about the election season--Education World has you covered when it comes to the right activities and resources for students of all ages. 

Here are eight lesson plans teachers can use for the election season provided by Education World:


  1. Track the Polls

Grade 8-12

In this lesson, students have the opportunity to track poll results before election day by comparing polls from week to week. Students can work in teams looking at different sources, and share their results with the class. The lesson plan advises for classes to use graphs or pie charts and write a weekly summary throughout the campaign. Here are a list of links students can use to track the polls:

USA Election Polls

Latest Election Polls

Election Projection


  1. Meet the Press

Grade 6-12

In this lesson, students listen to candidate interviews, debates, or other information available online. By watching these videos, students can gather information about where the candidate stands on particular issues. Then, set the class into groups of three where one student will be a campaign manager, the second student the candidate, and the third student the journalist. 

Ask each group to conduct their own interviews and present them to the class. After all the interviews, students can critique and vote for the winning candidate. 


  1. The Electoral College 

Grade 7-12

In this activity, students will learn about the electoral college's role in the election process by studying the election of 1876. In this election, Samuel J. Tilden got more of the popular vote than Rutherford B. Hayes, but Hayes won the election because he received more electoral votes. Students will then use the Electoral College Box Scores web page to see when this happened again in the election process (1888 and 2000). 


  1. What Are The Important Issues?

Grade 8-12

The first part of this lesson is to brainstorm a list of important issues the next president, or leader, will face in the national or local area. Some issues can include:

  • Economy
  • Health care
  • Foreign Policy
  • Education
  • Environment

Then ask students to narrow this list to five important issues by a vote, and then have each student vote for one single issue he or she feels is the most important. Have them explain why.


  1. Election Scavenger Hunt

Grade 6-12

In this lesson, students are required to look through a list of newspapers and other online news resources to collect items on the scavenger hunt lists teachers provide. Students must collect eight out of the ten items on the list. The list can include the following: 

  • a news article about Candidate #1's campaign
  • a photograph of Candidate #2
  • an editorial cartoon that related to one of the candidates
  • an election ad or a flyer for one of the candidates 


  1. An Election Day Classroom Experiment

Grade 5-9

Through this hands-on experiment, students will learn why voting is important and learn the potential impact on deciding not to vote. At the beginning of class, teachers can tell students they have the opportunity to vote in a mock election and provide them ballots listing the candidates and a space for students to identify their gender. Give them a private place to vote. Tell students that they are required to vote. Tally the ballots separately and lead the class in the following questions:

  • How do the two votes differ?
  • Were boys or girls more likely to vote when given the option?
  • Might an election be affected if only the people who chose to vote do so?
  • How might people required to vote affect an election?
  • Why is voting important?


  1. If I Were the President

Grade 4-8

In this lesson, students write a short essay telling what they would do to solve issues in the United States if they were elected president. Younger students can complete the sentence using a few words, but older students can write an essay on the topic. 


  1. Take a Stand

Grade 6-12

Before class, teacher can place a poster in the corner of each room and  then read a statement about a political or societal issue. Then tell students to go to the corner that best describes how they feel about that statement. Ask students why they chose that specific corner. Some statements can include:

  • All Americans should be required to vote
  • People should be allowed to vote on the Internet
  • Candidates should spend the same amount of money on campaigns
  • The two-party system in the United States does not allow third parties to gain a foothold in the Electoral College system. 
  • The power of special-interest groups in American politics is too great


Article by Kassondra Granata, Education World Contributor