Voting Lesson Plan: Rights and Responsibilities

Submitted by: Judy Grasso

Grade Levels: 3-5

In this multi-day lesson plan, which is adaptable for grades 3-5, students use BrainPOP resources to explore the rights and responsibilities associated with voting. Students then create a “Moby Machine” to hold a mock election in class and experience the voting process for themselves.

Lesson Plan Common Core State Standards Alignments

Students will:

  1. Understand vocabulary related to voting.
  2. Create a "Moby Machine" to hold a class election.
  3. Understand the rights and responsibilities associated with voting.

Materials:

  • Art materials to make a cut-out Moby (paper, crayons/markers, scissors, etc.)
  • Teacher-made voting ballots
  • Computer and projector to show BrainPOP resources
  • Class set of the BrainPOP graphic organizer
  • Class set of True/False activity page

Vocabulary:

vote, elected officials, taxes, election day, privacy, tally, responsibility, opinion, ballot

Preparation:

Print out and photocopy a class set of the True/False activity page and graphic organizer about voting. Draw a large image of Moby for the 'Moby Machine'.

Lesson Procedure:

  1. Day 1: Define all of the vocabulary terms necessary to understand what voting is. Talk about students' experiences with voting, perhaps having been to a voting booth with their parents.
  2. Show the BrainPOP movie on voting and discuss it with students to make sure they comprehend the process.
  3. Let students color the Moby and cut out the belly. Set it up as if it were a voting booth with a small box or container hidden behind Moby's belly to hold the ballots once they are cast.
  4. Day 2: Have ballots available for students to use in voting for a topic that's relevant to them. It could be a poll on their favorite school subject, or a vote about student council representatives or other issue that's pertinent to your school (a uniform policy, after school program, etc.) Invite other classes, administration, teachers, etc. to come in and vote. The ballots should be put into Moby's tummy.
  5. Day 3: During your math block, tally the results of the vote and chart them on a bar graph. Discuss the results. You may also want to announce the winner over the school's PA system.
  6. During the language arts block, use the graphic organizer to have students write about the importance of voting.
  7. In social studies, you may choose to view the BrainPOP movie on voting again. Afterward, take the Quiz as a class and discuss the answers.
  8. As an assessment, have students complete the True/False activity page.

Extension Activity:

What a fun lesson!!!! The kids are still talking about it and so are the other classes. You might consider using the 'Moby Machine' throughout the school year to allow students to vote on classroom procedures, topics of study, etc.