Sunday, October 23, 2016

The Fall Book Election 2016

Election time is here! This year I'm using books as candidates to teach my students the voting process. Check out the steps below to see how I set up this activity. 

Step 1- Choose the Candidates 
Choose the books that you want to be part of the election. I went with fiction stories that have different themes. I also chose books that center around main characters that are symbols of the fall season. You can never go wrong with monsters, bats, and ghosts! 
Plus, reading a high volume of titles will increase your bank of books that your classroom has shared. These books can easily be revisited during mini lessons and/or small group instruction. 

Step 2- Share the Stories
Share the stories with your students and hold discussions about the books. At my school, all grade levels are taking part in this election. We video taped our school librarian and principals reading the books. Then we uploaded the videos to our school drive and every teacher had quick access to the stories. 

Step 3- Election Activities
Find time in your schedule to do election activities based on the candidates. In my classroom I had the students create campaign posters. After the posters, the students practiced having book talks/debates in groups of 3 or 4. 
In social studies I talked about the election process and how a president is elected in the U.S.A. This is how I introduced election vocabulary and used our book election as examples. 

**Ideas for election activities**
-have the students create campaign posters for their favorite book candidate
-create political cartoons
-have students prepare a debate on the books
-have discussions about each book with other classrooms using Skype or your classroom phone
-review/teach election vocabulary

Step 4- Registar to Vote
Have the students register to vote and get their voter registration cards.                             

Step 5- Have a Voting Day
Set up an electronic voting booth with Google forms. I will be creating voting booths with chrome books inside each booth. The students will submit their ballot using a Google form. This will help me easily keep track of votes. It also create a nice pie chart to share with the students when the election is done. 
You can also easily create ballot slips and have the students place their votes into a box. 

Step 6- Celebrate the Winner
Bring your class or school together to celebrate the election winner! After all the votes are in, bring everyone together to announce the winner and have a mini celebration. We will be celebrating the winning book with a little music and a read aloud of the book. I will update this part of my blog post once we have our celebration. 

Click here to download some freebies for the book election.

I hope everyone is having a great school year. If you're not, remember this job isn't easy but nothing great ever is. 
Keep pushing. Greatness will come. Teach on! 

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