With the general election right around the corner, it is the perfect time to gear up for a day of learning based upon the events of the day. Election Day is full of learning opportunities for the whole family. But, did you know that you can study the election through every subject? Let me walk you down some fun, hands on activities to make this a day to remember for your kiddos with this Election Day Unit Study!
Incorporating Language Arts into Election Day
-Write and deliver an acceptance speech for becoming President of the United States
-Have your children journal about becoming President – watch their eyes light up as they dream.
What policy would they set as President?
What specific style of room would they want in the White House?
What type of food would they not want served to them again?
-Share their journal entities around the dinner table to include all the family members in the discussion.
What does Math have to do with the election?
We say it all the time to our kids, “you will use math for the rest of your life.” Election Day allows us to be relevant and practical with the math duties of the day.
-Look up the population of the nation, your favorite states, your county and/or your town. Work the math – percentage, adding/subtracting, draw a graph, etc
-Count and add up the Electoral College, the members of the House of Representatives, etc.
-Look at the numerous numbers being flashed on the ticker line of the news stations
-Money – look at the different coins and denominations, do money problems, compound interest problems for older students
-Talk about time zones, how long until the polls close, which communities will be the last voters, etc.
-Add up the states called for specific candidates as the polls close
Geography is an easy addition to your Election Day Unit Study!
Election Day leans itself to practical applications of studying the map of the United States of America. Use this day to introduce, refresh or solidify your child’s knowledge of the Nation.
-Refer to a map of the United States of America all day.
-Talk about the individual states
-Use these state and capital flash cards.
-Label a blank map with the names of the states
-Draw in the natural landscape for the Nation (mountains, forest, rivers, lakes, etc)
-Use map skills to plan a road trip to a National Landmark
Government/History is an easy addition, too…
This a valuable day to have discussions about the history of the United States of America. Our children are seeing history unfold in front of their eyes. Allow them the day to reflect and honor the history of the Nation.
-Use this map to label what state is “called” for which candidate. You can even put the number of electoral votes that the state has in the box. We are going to use blue and red stars to label the winner of the state.
-Read What is the Constitution?
-Watch Electoral College from Schoolhouse Rocks on Youtube.
-Have your own mock election. The topics don’t just have to be just the Presidential Candidates but include other fun topics (vote for color, food, flag (see below), new family rule, etc)
-Research, discuss and make a time line of the history of voting.
You can even add Science into your Election Day Unit Study!
The United States of America has always been an innovated nation in science and discoveries. Focus on using the day to see how science has formed America into the nation that it is.
-Research your state bird
-Use Rabbit Trails Through Science to study the unique features of birds
-Discuss and explore activities for the different biomes found in the United States
-Let your child pick out an animal specifically found in the United States and research it
-What scientific discoveries would you like to have made if you were President?
-Find a law that deals with science (national protected land, animals, etc)
Here are even more fun things to add to your Election Day studies
What a great day to have some extra exciting activities. Use the day to celebrate and take on the activities your family would enjoy.
-Make a red, white and blue dessert
-Have an all American dinner. Let your kids decide what the menu should be. They could even help with the preparation of the special dinner.
-Create your own family flag
-Reflect on the importance of the meaning of patriotic songs on Youtube.
-Compose your own patriotic music
-Act out a scene from American History
-Play Board Games – Electoral College Card Game , Scrambled States , Ticket to Ride
Have fun while learning through this Election Day Unit Study!
One of the most important activities you should do is expose your children to the election process and government officials. On Election Day, try to take your children with you to vote (if your state allows). If you are voting early or sending in your ballot then show your children what you are doing and what a ballot looks like.
My kiddos have gotten to see my name on the local ballot in two election cycles. They have helped put out and picked up campaign yard signs. They have even attended celebratory events with other elected officials. Recently, my daughter has been able to attend a few of my city council meetings. She has experienced the local public officials perform their duties. I am grateful that I have had the opportunity to demonstrate the need for the public to serve in elected official capacities.
Election Day is truly a day in history. As you use the day to explore, learn and celebrate the importance of the day, your children will reflect on these moments throughout their lifetime. Enjoy the day and know that you are giving practical and true learning to your children.
Guest post from Charlesa Kline
Charlesa is a pastor’s wife, homeschooling mom to two kiddos, and a special part of the This Bit of Life team. The Kline family resides in Charlesa’s childhood hometown in Nebraska where she serves on the city council as the Council President, co-coordinates a science camp for 350 youth and tends to know most of local residents from years of being home. Her true passion is to come along side individuals to offer support, encouragement and guidance as they forge ahead using their talent to accomplish amazing things. In her spare time, Charlesa will be found gulping a cold cup of coffee while checking off her to do list.