We spent the last week or two teaching our 2nd graders about elections. We began by reading some presidential books featuring favorite characters.
The kids were highly motivated by all of the election hype in the media. They loved reading these books and learning about the election process.
We learned about the qualifications and job descriptions of president. We hosted a grade level election where the kids voted for president. The candidates were Grace, Duck, and Teacher.
The kids made flyers promoting their candidate. We made the flyers on Smore.com. I have an educator account and added my students for free temporarily. We created accounts and each student made a presidential flyer. I placed a template into each student account. The kids learned how to use the pre-made template to add text and photos. They also got to experiment with writing persuasive statements. I shared a link to the flyers in parent emails.
Every 2nd grader voted for Grace, Duck, or Teacher for president. We made a voting booth, voter registration cards, and ballots. Our 2nd graders took this very seriously.
The grade level gathered together in the afternoon to count, tally, and graph the votes. Grace was the winner! Duck came in 2nd and Teacher was a close 3rd place.
On Tuesday, National Election Day, the whole school voted for the “real” president. At the end of the day we received election results. The results were the same as the “real” election. Donald Trump won on our campus too.
The kids had so much fun learning about the importance of voting and elections. I hope they find a passion for civics and continue to vote for the rest of their lives.
I’ve been using Blendspace for a couple of years now. Blendspace is a wonderful resource offered through TES.com. TES is for teachers. There are a variety of lessons and resources available and membership is free.
Blendspace is one of my favorite resources. I can quickly and easily create a lesson to add to my Google classroom using Blendspace. You can drop and add as many media resources as you like into your Blendspace.
You can search Youtube, Flickr and Google for resources. You can add from your Google Drive, or Dropbox. You can add a webpage. You can even add your own video and media.
I usually research Youtube beforehand so I will know exactly which videos I want to use in my Blendspace. I often make a Google slide beforehand so that it is also ready to go. Then you drop and add to each slide in the Blendspace.
When you are finished creating your Blendspace, there are several options available for sharing or publishing your lesson.
My favorite way to share Blendspace lessons with my students is to create a Google Slide with the link to the Blendspace lesson. I load the slide into my Google Classroom for students to access. This is the method I have had the most success with in my classroom. My students can access the Blendspace with iPads, desktops, laptops, and in our Computer Lab.
Editing is easily accomplished, even within and already shared lesson.
Just click the pencil in the bottom right corner and begin editing. You also have the option to delete a slide altogether. This is sometimes necessary when media from other sources changes after you’ve created your lesson.
My students love learning by video. Blendspace gives me the ability to create lessons for my whole class, small groups, and even individuals. It is truly one of my favorite teaching resources.
Here are a few of my Blendspace lessons. Feel free to use them with your students.