Lesson 4: Voting and Elections (Grades 4-5)
The constitution sets out very few absolute qualifications to run for national office, yet the unofficial qualities of candidates often play a much larger role in who actually gets elected. These activities will examine the constitutional requirements to run for office and some of the unofficial qualities that can impact an election.
Know the constitutional qualifications to run for the House of Representatives, the Senate, and the Presidency
Understand that other considerations are involved in choosing candidates
attained: to come to or arrive at; reach
composed: to make or form by combining things, parts, or elements
eligible: meeting the stipulated requirements; qualified
inhabitant: a person that lives in a place, especially as a permanent resident
term limit: a statutory limit on the number of terms an official may serve
vested: secure in the possession of or assigned to a person
- Create a KWL chart. Ask students what they know about voting and record that information in the K (Know) section of the chart.
- Ask students what questions they have about voting and record those questions in the W (want to know) section of the chart.
- Ask students to read the article “Voting and Elections.” Circle any information they find important about voting and elections,
- Ask students to work with a partner and share what they circled and why they thought it was important.
- Ask students to share with the class what they discussed with their partner.
- Return to the KWL chart and review the questions they had. Record or move any answered questions in the L (learned) portion of the chart.
- Watch the video “Who is Able to Vote in Local, State, and National Elections?”
- Ask students to research any unanswered questions about voting.
- Have students look at the map of congressional apportionment. Identify the states with the largest number of representatives and brainstorm why those states have more representation.
Have students write a 1-2 paragraph essay explaining what qualities they think are the most important considerations to run for national office and why.
Voting and Elections Article
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