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Who will get YOUR vote?

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This is a WebQuest designed for High School students. It was created with the hope that it will help students learn how to chose a candidate, and be able to articulate why they chose the candidate …

This is a WebQuest designed for High School students. It was created with the hope that it will help students learn how to chose a candidate, and be able to articulate why they chose the candidate that they did.


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  • 1. Who will get YOUR vote? Student Page Title Introduction Task Process Evaluation Conclusion Credits [ Teacher Page ] A WebQuest for High School Students Designed by: Liz Melahn [email_address] Based on a template from The WebQuest Page
  • 2. Introduction Student Page Title Introduction Task Process Evaluation Conclusion Credits [ Teacher Page ] Today you’re going to take on the role of an American citizen who can legally vote. As Americans, it is our responsibility to participate in our government so that it functions correctly. However, sometimes it can be difficult to decide who you want to vote for. In this assignment, you’ll explore many different issues and discover where two presidential candidates stand. The two candidates that we are going to look at today are the GOP nominee Senator John McCain, and the Democratic nominee Senator Barack Obama. You will be able to see who you agree with on both issues. By the end of this assignment, you will have a better understanding about how to choose who you want to vote for. This is an important skill that you will be able to use for the remainder of your life! ? ? ? ? ? ? ?
  • 3. The Task Student Page Introduction Task Process Evaluation Conclusion Credits [ Teacher Page ] To complete this assignment, several things will need to be done. - Take the quiz to find out where your personal political views fall. - Use the Excel spreadsheet to: -Mark down where you fall in the political spectrum -Mark down who you agree with more on each specific issue - Create a Flier in Microsoft Publisher or Microsoft Word that contains the following elements: -The name of the Candidate you’ve chosen to vote for. -A Creative Commons licensed picture of that candidate. -A list of the three most important issues to you that you agree with your chosen candidate about. -A paragraph (or two!) about your chosen candidate explaining why you chose them. Include things you like about the way they view the world and our government. Also include one issue that you do not agree with your candidate about! -A paragraph (or two!) about the candidate you did not choose explaining why they weren’t your choice. Include things you disagree with and don’t like. In addition, include one issue that you do agree with this candidate about. Title
  • 4. The Process Student Page Title Introduction Task Process Evaluation Conclusion Credits [ Teacher Page ] To accomplish the assignment today follow the following steps: 1. Think about yourself as an American citizen who is at least 18 years old. What issues are important to you? Why is voting important to you? 2. Take the political spectrum quiz online to find out where you fall. Every person is different, and it is important to understand where your views fall before beginning this project. 3. Once you’ve discovered where your beliefs land, open the Excel spreadsheet and enter them to the right of the cell that reads “my political beliefs.” This will help you remember where you fell today. Remember that beliefs often change! 4. Read the issues down the side of the spreadsheet and then go find them on the websites provided. What does each candidate think about each issue? Who do you identify with? Make sure that you keep track of this as you go in your Excel spreadsheet! (Remember, you don’t have to agree 100% with a candidate, but try to decide who you agree with more … Barack Obama or John McCain ?) You can also use these websites to help if you need it: Democratic Party , GOP (Republicans) , Where candidates stand 1 , Where candidates stand 2 5. After you have finished marking all the issues, count up how many issues you agree with each candidate about. You do not have to choose your candidate based on these numbers, but it is a good first step! 6. Think about how each candidate would function as our president. Who would you like to see in the Oval office? Decide on a candidate to vote for! 7. Now that the big decision is over, go into Microsoft Publisher and begin your flier. Remember that there are a lot of elements to the flier, so be careful to include each of them! Try to make your flier as interesting as possible, as well as defend your beliefs as much as you can. 8. Once completed, think about the difference you can make just by voting! Remember that as a citizen, it is important to know how to choose a candidate, and now you’re ready to vote! If you’re 18, or about to turn 18 you should fill out a voter registration form! 9. Turn in your completed flier and Excel spreadsheet.
  • 5. Evaluation Rubric Student Page Title Introduction Task Process Evaluation Conclusion Credits [ Teacher Page ]
  • 6. Conclusion Student Page Title Introduction Task Process Evaluation Conclusion Credits [ Teacher Page ] Congratulations! By completing this project, you are ready to be a well-informed voter! You are now able to research candidates and discover who you align best with! You are also able to explain why you voted the way you did! Now that you’re finished, you can think about the following questions: -How can you encourage other people to vote? -What other resources could you use to gain knowledge and information about candidates? -Are you interested in campaigning for office one day? -Are you interested in working for a campaign someday? - Would you ever consider donating money to a campaign? Why or why not? -What is the most interesting thing about government? You can also watch this video about voting:
  • 7. Credits & References Student Page Title Introduction Task Process Evaluation Conclusion Credits [ Teacher Page ] Thanks to everyone who produced such great websites or images for us to use in our WebQuest! Websites: http:// www.theadvocates.org/quiz.html (Political Quiz) http://www.barackobama.com/index.php (Obama’s Website) http://www.johnmccain.com/ (McCain’s Website) http://www.democrats.org/index.html (Democrats Website) http://www.rnc.org/ (Republican Website) http://www.co.larimer.co.us/elections/votreg.htm (Voter Registration in Larimer County) http://www.ontheissues.org/default.htm (Shows where various candidates stand) http://www.2decide.com/table.htm (Easy to read chart to see where the candidates stand) Pictures taken from the following Flikr users: transplanted mountaineer jmtimages (on the road to Dallas) marcn Soggydan YouTube Video: bigjrit
  • 8. [ Student Page ] Title Introduction Learners Standards Process Resources Credits Teacher Page Evaluation Teacher Script Conclusion A WebQuest for High School Students Designed by: Liz Melahn [email_address] Based on a template from The WebQuest Page Who will get YOUR vote?
  • 9. Introduction for the Teacher [ Student Page ] Title Introduction Learners Standards Process Resources Credits Teacher Page This lesson was developed as a project in EDUC 331 class at Colorado State University. We were asked to pick a topic and design a WebQuest that we could then post on SlideShare for other educators to use. I am hoping that this project helps some students learn how to educate themselves about voting. With the upcoming presidential election, I wanted to make sure that students learned how to participate. One of the most frustrating things for me is watching as students choose based on what their friends think, so I wanted to help them choose for themselves. Only two candidates are mentioned, as they will be the two who get the most votes. However, more candidates could easily be added. I like to push the students to think hard and be creative with their assignments, and hopefully have some fun too! Evaluation Teacher Script Conclusion
  • 10. Who is this WebQuest designed for? [ Student Page ] Title Introduction Learners Standards Process Resources Credits Teacher Page This WebQuest is designed for High School students. It would be ideal for seniors as they are either 18 years old or close to turning 18. Therefore, it is the most useful for them right away. However, I think that this could be useful various grades in high school. Before using this WebQuest, I would recommend that the students understand government and how it works. In addition, they should understand the voting process. Knowledge of Excel and Publisher is helpful but not necessary. Evaluation Teacher Script Conclusion
  • 11. Curriculum Standard Information [ Student Page ] Title Introduction Learners Standards Process Resources Credits Teacher Page In this lesson, students will be exploring standards 1 and 4 of the Colorado Department of Education standards for Civics (9-12) Standard 1 Students understand the purposes of government, and the basic constitutional principles* of the United States republican form of government. Standard 4 Students understand how citizens exercise the roles, rights and responsibilities of participation in civic life* at all levels - local, state and national. Evaluation Teacher Script Conclusion
  • 12. The Process of the lesson [ Student Page ] Title Introduction Learners Standards Process Resources Credits Teacher Page This lesson is designed to take place over one or two days. The students should be able to complete the quiz, and the excel sheet in an hour or less. Some students may be new to politics and thinking about their role in government, and it may take them longer to complete the lesson. The flyer could be created as a homework assignment, or as an in class activity the following classperiod In order for a teacher to be able to use this lesson, you should be able to work Microsoft Office programs including Excel, Word, and Publisher. Encourage the students to really think hard about the issues, and how different ideas about each issue can change their life. Variations This WebQuest could be changed to include different candidates and different websites. Although this WebQuest is designed for the 2008 Presidential Election, it could be easily changed to fit new candidates (including Senators, House Representatives, or local government officials…etc.) In addition, it would be easy to add a debate in the classroom, or a vote to see who the students chose. This could be particularly interesting around the same time as the general election, then you could compare the results of your class against that of other classes, your state, and the nation. Evaluation Teacher Script Conclusion
  • 13. Resources needed [ Student Page ] Title Introduction Learners Standards Process Resources Credits Teacher Page In order to be able to complete this WebQuest and the assignments associated you will need access to the following resources: -A computer lab -Access to the internet (Make sure that all the websites are unlocked) -Computers with access to Microsoft Office (or similar) programs -One to two class periods for the students to work -Ability to print their final assignment or email it as an attachment In order for this lesson, one teacher is needed. However, it might be nice to have a technology teacher as well if one is available at your school. The websites used for this WebQuest are as following: http:// www.theadvocates.org/quiz.html (Political Quiz) http://www.barackobama.com/index.php (Obama’s Website) http://www.johnmccain.com/ (McCain’s Website) http://www.democrats.org/index.html (Democrats Website) http://www.rnc.org/ (Republican Website) http://www.co.larimer.co.us/elections/votreg.htm (Voter Registration in Larimer County) http://www.ontheissues.org/default.htm (Shows where various candidates stand) http://www.2decide.com/table.htm (Easy to read chart to see where the candidates stand) **Please notice that the voter registration is for Larimer County in Colorado…look for your own county website so that as many students as possible (if they’re 18) can get registered to vote!! Let’s help change the problem of voter apathy with this project!** Evaluation Teacher Script Conclusion
  • 14. Evaluation of the lesson [ Student Page ] Title Introduction Learners Standards Process Resources Credits Teacher Page If this WebQuest is successful, your students should: -Talk about how they were surprised or interested in who they chose to vote for. -Students debating among themselves about which candidate is better in and outside of class. -Strong arguments and explanations in their flyers. -Students beginning to gett excited about the voting process in the U.S. -Students understand why voting is important, and why their vote is I important! -Students have a better understanding of the US government. Evaluation Teacher Script Conclusion
  • 15. Teacher script [ Student Page ] Title Introduction Learners Standards Process Resources Credits Teacher Page How can you help students discover how to choose a candidate? It can be a difficult process! Don’t forget to remind them that everyone is different and so are their political beliefs. In addition, remind them that if their friends think one thing that they don’t have to think the same way. In order to show kids that it is okay to have your own beliefs, you could tell them about James Carville and Mary Matalin (a married couple who share completely opposite political beliefs…). In addition, I would stress the importance of the process of voting and democracy in the United States, and try to get the students as excited for the process as possible! Don’t forget to have fun!! Evaluation Teacher Script Conclusion
  • 16. Conclusion [ Student Page ] Title Introduction Learners Standards Process Resources Credits Teacher Page Voter apathy is a huge problem in the United States. For a nation who is one of the leaders in democracy, it is in our best interest to get more people voting. This lesson will help students learn for themselves how to chose a candidate that they identify with. In addition, if the students get excited about the process, it is quite likely that they will be interested in voting. Not only that, but if we can help students get registered to vote, then it will impact the amount of people voting in the elections! Evaluation Teacher Script Conclusion
  • 17. Credits & References (Teacher) [ Student Page ] Title Introduction Learners Standards Process Resources Credits Teacher Page Thanks to everyone who produced such great websites or images for us to use in our WebQuest! Websites: http:// www.theadvocates.org/quiz.html (Political Quiz) http://www.barackobama.com/index.php (Obama’s Website) http://www.johnmccain.com/ (McCain’s Website) http://www.democrats.org/index.html (Democrats Website) http://www.rnc.org/ (Republican Website) http://www.co.larimer.co.us/elections/votreg.htm (Voter Registration in Larimer County) http://www.ontheissues.org/default.htm (Shows where various candidates stand) http://www.2decide.com/table.htm (Easy to read chart to see where the candidates stand) Pictures taken from the following Flikr users: transplanted mountaineer jmtimages (on the road to Dallas) marcn Soggydan YouTube Video: bigjrit Evaluation Teacher Script Conclusion

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