However, I'm sure you'll agree, this year's election is out of control. The ads on TV are nasty and misleading. People are very passionate about this election, and most feel quite strongly for their own candidate and against the other candidate. There is a lot of anger. I just don't want to go there with the children. (I don't want to see a fight break out in my classroom! Kids tend to be as passionate as their parents about presidential candidates!)
My plan is to do some election day activities without getting into detail about any of the specific candidates. I've made the above freebie to practice common and proper nouns. It has an election day theme, but never mentions the candidates.
Another idea is to have the children vote for something on a child level on November 6th. I thought I might have the children vote for their favorite subject in school, or maybe their favorite lunch. It's a good excuse to do some Opinion Writing (CCSS.2.W.1: Write opinion pieces in which they introduce the topic or book they are writing about, state an opinion, supply reasons that support the opinion, use linking words (e.g. because, and also) to connect opinion and reasons, and provide a concluding statement or section.) This standard is close to the same for all grades... it just goes into more depth as the children get older.
Here in New Hampshire, we have another way for the children to understand the election process... and it's at their level, and doesn't upset anyone! All students in grades K - 3 in New Hampshire vote for their favorite book of 10 books nominated for the New Hampshire Picture Book Ladybug Award. The books have already been nominated, and will be voted on in the month of November by New Hampshire school children.
To be considered for nomination, a picture book must meet the following criteria:
- be published within the last three years
- be in print
- have an author and illustrator from the U.S.
- possess strong child appeal
- have artistic quality with text that supports the illustrations
- not be a title previously nominated
It sounds like another good excuse for opinion writing!