Yasmeen Kamrani Sallam
Invitation to VOTE
An election year is a great opportunity to not only talk with children about civic responsibility but an optimal way to lay the foundation in the early years of the power to make decisions can bring about change.
To begin the discussion reading a book such as Democracy for Dinosaurs: A Guide for Young Citizens by Laurie Krasny Brown and illustrated Marc Brown, is an accessible way to show how the things they do every day plays an important role in being a part of their country. To deepen the connection of the literacy, inviting a child or a class to participate in an invitation to vote is an ideal way to ingrain the concepts of the book and how elections work. You can simply set up a voting booth or take a box, decorate it with washi tape, markers, stickers, or paint.
Whether you have your child vote for the President of the current election, class name, snack for the next day, favorite color of the rainbow, ice cream flavors, or dinosaurs, this is such a great way to use math in real life. You can make election ballots or simply create a graph where they vote on whatever topic during circle time. After the ballots are counted or the graph is finished, you can count together what the outcome is.
Through these types of meaningful experiences children learn about themselves and the world they live. They are learning to vocalize their likes and dislikes, their interests, and their abilities through communicating what they want and how to make their voice heard. This role play is developing important complex thinking skills, by projecting what they desire. They are experiencing first hand what is going on currently in our society but on terms that they can grasp. Ultimately laying down the foundation at young age will hopefully instill the importance of voting throughout their lives!