Confession time. I am not a super political person. I tend to have my own mind made up about a few things and avoid hearing heavy political news for the most part. But, like most people in America, when it’s an election year, my political interest sort of increases. And if you’re like me, you might be wondering if it’s something you want to approach in the classroom, whether briefly with some light reading and an activity or a full-blown unit. I put together a list of books that I have been collecting for just the occasion!
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I also made a little Election Day flipbook to go along with the big day. I absolutely loved this book and that it could be used for Preschool to Middle school aged kids (even my husband was caught reading it–we all can use a little refresher course I guess haha!). It would go perfect with an introduction to the election process. You can find it here.
I used the banner to create a sign for this fun little ballot box. I also found these red, white and blue M&M’s on sale after the 4th (tucked in the freezer for such an occasion!), so I popped them in a bowl as a fun little treat. If you can get copies of both of the books (Duck for President and Grace for President), it would be a great way to learn the very basics behind what voting is. Just read each book and then ask your students to privately vote on which book they liked the best.
Pass out voting ballots and have a quick discussion on voting privacy (this is when I would introduce what a voting booth is and why they exist). Ask students to fold their ballot in half and then dismiss a few at a time to place their ballots in the box. You can even do a mini graphing/tally lesson on how many people voted for each book as you count the ballots to determine the winner! The kids absolutely love this activity. I’ve included a blank ballot template here in case you’d rather not use the books I chose.