teaching kids election speak


  • Below are some of the facts about elections that I posted for the kids, so that all the hoopla made a little more sense. I also did a display of books/DVDs regarding Elections in the U.S. and all things presidential.

  • Once the National Conventions have been held, and the candidates have been nominated and chosen the presidential election begins!
  • The candidates travel throughout the country, appearance and giving speeches. The candidates use TV ads and other means to persuade the voters to choose them.
  • The candidates campaign right up until Election Day, when the nation votes for its President.
  • In our national Presidential election, every citizen of legal age who has met the voting requirements, (such as registering to vote) has an opportunity to vote.
  • However, the President is not chosen by popular vote by the people. The Constitution requires that a process known as the Electoral College ultimately decides who will win the general election.
  • When a person casts a vote in the general election, they are not voting directly for an individual Presidential candidate. Voters actually cast their vote for a group of people, known as Electors. These electors are part of the Electoral College and are supposed to vote for their state’s preferred candidate.
  • In the Electoral College system, each state gets a certain number of electors, based on each state's total number of representation in Congress. Each elector gets one electoral vote. For example, a large state like California gets 54 electoral votes, while Rhode Island gets only four. All together, there are 538 Electoral votes.
Info was from Ben's Guide to the U.S. Government

So, in the spirit of getting kids involved, I put together a polling station for the Children's Department, complete with ballots. I have to say that I was amazed that as many kids participated as did. However, if the nation agreed with the kids in my little conservatives-ville U.S.A. city, we would have a different president. They voted as follows:

John McCain/ Sarah Palin (REPUBLICAN) 52.74% (48 votes)
Barack Obama/Joe Biden (DEMOCRAT) 41.75% (38 votes)
Cynthia McKinney/Rosa Clemente (GREEN) 4.39% (4 votes)
Undecided 1.09% (1 vote)
Kids voted: 91

A pic of our election area:

A pic of our poll box. Note the quote...ha ha ha!

What the ballots looked like. I know, I know. I stayed mainstream and included the Green Party. There were too many choices and I didn't want to confuse the hell out of the kids!!


TSOldtimer said…
Huh. The Green Party didn't make it on the ballot in our little hamlet in Central PA. I think we had the Independent candidates if we didn't like our two-party options. Or a write in. Which people in my hometown took advantage of.

Sometimes, I just want to SHAKE people.
Miss Cellaneous said…
Loves it! I personally think you should have confused the hell out of the kids. Where's Ralph Nader? Or maybe a photo of him would scare the hell out of the kids. . just kidding. :) Good job awesome Children's Librarian!
Miss C,

Ralph Nader scares the hell out of me. Yeah, too many choices--thought I might confuse the kids.

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