My first year of teaching was 2008-2009 and I had so much fun teaching my third graders about the election process that year. They are at the age where they are beginning to grasp harder concepts of social studies and the large effects of individuals' actions. That being said, I am very much looking forward to teaching through another election year! As we draw near to Election Time, here are some ideas to use in your classroom.
The first thing we talk about is the importance of voting. In order to vote, citizens must be registered with their county. I made voters' registration cards for the students to decorate (idea from The First Grade Parade). Thhen we vote in an activity I call Majority Wins. The students vote on some of their favorites (ice cream, book, toy, pet, color, etc.). We graph the results and discuss the word "majority". The students do a quickwrite about the importance of their vote.
We learn about the Presidential candidates as well. I have pictures of Obama and Romney displayed while we fill out a Venn Diagram about them. The ideas they have are quite entertaining!