Introduce information about the powers and responsibilities of government and explore how local elections impact your community and affect kids’ lives. Safe water, new books in the library, and parks to play in are all connected to who is in office and running local governments.
Ask students to think about the many ways local governments affect them. Talk about what students can do to be heard about issues important to them, even if they aren’t old enough to vote. Together, research the types of local government in your community (county, city, school district, etc.) and learn about the various roles politicians, citizens, and others play in local government. Have your class “vote” on a local elected official to research and learn more about the office he or she occupies. Invite this politician to your class (or to make a video visit) to read aloud, give a talk about the election process, and explain what it is like to work as an elected official.
Who can vote?
Why can’t kids vote? Do you think that kids should get to vote? Why or why not?
Why should people vote?
How does voting help people?
What is important to you and your future?
Vote for Our Future Classroom Guide from Random House Children’s Books
Today is Election Day resources from ReadWriteThink
My Voice, My Voter’s Guide student activity from Teaching Tolerance
Reading Adventure Pack: Government (in English and Spanish) from Reading Rockets
Grace for President by Kelly S. DiPucchio
I Voted: Making a Choice Makes a Difference by Mark Shulman
If I Ran For President by Catherine Stier
Granddaddy’s Turn: A Journey to the Ballot Box by Michael S. Bandy
Vote for Me! by Ben Clanton
Equality’s Call: The Story of Voting Rights in America by Deborah Diesen
Understanding Your Role in Elections by Jessica GundersonMore
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