On November 8, 2016, we will chose a new President of the United States of America. This election year has kept us all entertained and it’s a hot topic of conversation wherever you go. Our kids are also exposed to opinions, facts, and T.V. commercials that can be controversial. There was no time like now to get my kids involved in the 2016 election process!
Here’s how you can, too.
1. First, try, try, try as hard as you can, not to influence your students with your opinion. I know that this is incredibly hard not to do because I sometimes find myself almost doing it.
2. Have them get involved both at home and at school. I send homework related to the election. Sometimes it’s just a simple research page, like the one below. If you would like to have it, just click on the image below.
3. Get them excited! Ask them to tell you what they think about Clinton and Trump. Most will know very little, but it will get them talking. Get ready for some funny responses!
4. Make sure they understand the voting process and as much as they can understand about how a President is elected. I have broken it down for my students, from the non-reader up to the grade level kids. Everyone can participate in some way. If you were to ask any one of them who is running for President, they can easily tell you! Use the internet, videos, books, and activities! I have some listed below for you to check out. My kids range are in 1st through 3rd grade and have a wide range of abilities, yet they ALL (every single one) participate!
5. Do it with consistency. The election will have come and gone, but no matter what type of learners your students are, they will remember something about this election and the activities you have engaged them in. I started these activities a few weeks ago to get them started. Now, each morning, they look forward to voting and tallying up opinions. I can bet your bottom dollar that my students will remember that you need 270 electoral votes to win! We sing about it and “dance it out”!
6. If I were President, I would…. Have your kids make posters and a write a word/sentence/paragraph to tell you what he or she would do if they were President! I’ve encouraged parents to help with this.
7. Make it real. Well, as real as possible. I actually bought a children’s podium (Walmart/Amazon for $35/free shipping) to make the experience real for them. It’s a fabulous way to get your students talking about…well, anything!
8. Make a celebratory breakfast! We will be decked out in red, white and blue to celebrate the election! My students love food, so this will be the topping on the cake (or cookie)!
Here are some pictures of our classroom in action. I’ve included links for you to see, too!