Spring 3-Day Middle School Lesson Plans
The following gives a briefly overview of the Citizens, Not Spectators spring curriculum for Grades 6-8. This curriculum is normally taught prior to spring elections.  To view the lesson plan, click he corresponding title or the "Read More" link.

Lesson 1: Becoming a Voter Print E-mail

downloadIn this lesson, students apply their state’s requirements for registering to vote. Students learn when and how to register, how to complete a voter registration form, and when and how to reregister.

 
Lesson 2a: Becoming an Informed Voter: Preparing for the General Election Print E-mail

downloadThis lesson focuses on a voter’s need to be fully informed prior to casting a vote on Election Day and how to acquire the necessary information. Students learn what a yes or no vote or a decision to abstain means on a ballot. Students learn the definitions of amendment,initiative, and referendum. By completing the handouts for school referendums, students are given the opportunity to think critically and to learn firsthand why voters need to be fully informed about ballot questions.

 
Lesson 2b: What Is A Good Rule? Creating Our Ballot Questions Print E-mail

downloadThis lesson offers students the opportunity to take the role of voters with special interests. Students draw up initiatives for new classroom or school rules. Working in groups of four or five, students share their ideas and rationale for new rules. Students listen to other students’ interests, provide justifications for new rules, and reach a consensus by majority vote. Each group submits its priority initiative for ballot consideration. Schedule this lesson to give students sufficient time to discuss their initiatives before the simulated election.

 
Lesson 3: The Culminating Activity: In-Class Simulated Election Print E-mail

downloadIn this lesson, students apply what they have learned about voting procedures and experience the processes similar to a real election polling site by role-playing poll workers with specific duties. Students become familiar with the polling site procedures and mechanics of voting in their state. Additionally, students cast their vote and assist others with voting in an environment that approximates an actual polling place. The lesson’s election simulation coincides with the general election for a more authentic experience. A supervisor, ideally the registrar of voters, should be in the vicinity of the voting booths to assist students who may have questions about the voting process and mechanisms.