Election Unit - Holding A Mock Election!

{Politics can be a touchy subject no matter where you go, but it's especially important to be careful what you say - and how you say it! - in a school setting. Sidestepping potentially 'hot' issues such as your personal political party affiliation and candidate selections, election season truly does offer a fabulous opportunity for discussing important concepts like patriotism, citizenship, as well as one of the many things that makes America great, the freedom to make our own choice!}

Election Day and Government Kindergarten Lesson Plan
Photo Source: onehoosierteacher.blogspot.com

While Erin over at Hoosier Teacher is a middle school educator {and realize that the skill level of a 7th/8th grader is certainly not the same as that of a kindergartner!}, we loved the way she put together her mock election and thought it might spark your creative juices! What better way is there to teach your kiddos about the voting process than with a hands-on exploration?! While you probably won't be broaching the subject of the electoral college with your kinders any time soon, there are plenty of other ways to engage your kiddos in a mock election!

  • Introduce the election process with literature. Erin offers several great suggestions and we know there are tons of recommendations floating around out there. {Check out Allie's list over at No Time For Flash Cards!}
  • A responsible citizens who wishes to exercise their right to vote must complete a voter registration card. Create or download your own registration cards and have your students register to vote in your mock election.
  • A responsible citizen researches the candidates in order to make an informed decision. Leading up to the election, provide a chance for your kiddos to check out the 'candidates'. If you choose to have a food related election (i.e. Skittles v. M&Ms, baked potato chips v. regular potato chips, etc), set up a sampling station. If you go the literature route (i.e. which book do you like best?), include the proposed titles in group reading time, etc. On a side note, we really like Erin's thoughts on choosing 'candidates' for a mock election; "I like doing a Coke/Pepsi type election, because it takes the emphasis off of the people in the election, and puts it on the actual PROCESS."
  • Make election day exciting! Provide voting booths, ballots, "I Voted!" stickers, and other election themed paraphernalia to get your kiddos into the spirit of the day.
  • Include an election math component. Once all the ballots have been casted, tally them and graph the results!

We know your kiddos will have a blast with this activity and encourage you to check out Erin's post as well as many of the other mock election activities that are floating around Pinterest and blogosphere!