NIE—Nov. 2-8, 2016—Political Science

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This Week’s Anton Lesson Plan

Over the next week, Election Day will be here with both the country’s presidential race and numerous local ones in the current news cycle. With chatter about candidates and the voting process at a fever pitch, this is a perfect opportunity to engage students with a lesson plan that focuses on the political process and what their civic duties entail once they become old enough to register and vote. This week, all Anton Media Group will be running a local voter’s guide, which will contain biographies of every candidate running in the numerous local races. This can also be a chance to go over the process involved in registering to vote and the history behind giving women and minorities access to this right that was initially limited to white male adult property owners.

Past presidential races can also be touched upon, whether it was President Theodore Roosevelt running as a third-party candidate in 1912, how the 1960 race between John F. Kennedy and Richard M. Nixon was the closest since 1916 or the dominant race Ronald Reagan ran in 1984, taking 49 of 50 states and becoming the only other candidate besides Nixon to do this. Students can write up brief summaries about each of the local candidates, what issues they differ on and in some instances, agree upon. Other potential exercises can involve doing research and a summary of the different local groups offering endorsements of various candidates.

This is an exercise that can be done by individual students or as part of a group. You may even want to pick students to present either side of a particular race and take a class poll to see who may have argued their point more effectively.

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