Well, the primaries are done, and we are entering the heated time of a mid-term general election here in Florida and nationwide. Every election matters, but in many cases, mid-term turnout is often lower than that of presidential election years. One of the most important things that we as civics educators can do is help students understand why elections matter, and why voting matters. Our state of Florida, of course, stands as a perfect example of every vote counting and every election mattering.
Florida Civics Benchmark SS.7.C.2.9, Evaluate candidates for political office by analyzing their qualifications, experience, issue-based platforms, debates, and political ads, and Benchmark SS.7.C.2.7, Conduct a mock election to demonstrate the voting process and its impact on a school, community, or local level, are both benchmarks that explore with students the importance of evaluating candidates and taking part in elections. As part of the lesson plan for 2.9, the Florida Joint Center for Citizenship has created a mock election website that you can use both with the lesson and for election opportunities in your classroom and school! It is completely modifiable by the registered teacher, with the ability to create questions with a number of possible selected responses and to track response data and tally results electronically.
In addition to the site that we have created for approaching elections in your classroom and/or teaching the Benchmarks 2.9 and 2.7, the FJCC is also excited to offer teachers the opportunity to have students actually take part in the upcoming midterm election. At our mock election simulation website, students can vote with others across the state for government officials, including governor, lt. governor, and representatives. The data from THIS version of the site can be tracked and tallied according to your school and from across the state.
Please note that the site IS being revised with options based on the recent primary. We will let folks know when it is open!