Teaching My Twins About the Voting Process

I take my status as an American citizen very seriously, and made sure to vote weeks ago. (I live in Oregon, so my vote comes by way of a mailed ballot. No long lines for me!)

I also take my job as a mom very seriously, so I made sure my twins (age 7) saw my ballot, saw me go through each measure on said ballot and weigh the pros and cons of each side, then carefully fill in my selection. I showed them all the mailers I’d saved from each side of the fence, and the master voting pamphlet that contains a summary of each measure. I made sure they saw me consult all of this before I filled in each circle. (Pet Peeve alert…blindly filling in circles without properly educating yourself on what you’re voting for!)

I’ve explained the voting process with enough detail that they  now understand the basics of how our president is elected, how long he/she is able to be the president including how long the term is and how they can run for only a total of two terms, why they can’t vote yet, and above all how important it is for each of them to vote once they’re old enough.

Over the past few weeks I’ve answered a barrage of questions, and been constantly amazed at how their little minds learn the voting process.

For example…after watching me take all the care in the world with filling in my ballot my twins now insist it would be much easier if everyone in America could just get together in one room and “raise their hand” to signify their vote instead of going through all the rigmarole of filling out the ballot and mailing it in. (Now they understand how impossible that is due to sheer population, but I have to say I agree with the principal of the idea 🙂 )

They also had a hard time grasping that a vote for President also included a vote for the Vice President at the same time. They thought since it was two separate people, it would be two separate votes. I handled this by explaining how since the two acted together as a team, they were elected as a team.

Lastly, after comprehending that a President can only serve two four year terms, they stumped me with the following question…if a current president lost their reelection campaign, could they run for Vice President in the next one?  (Anyone out there know this one?)

This morning, after a hearty breakfast of cereal and cartoons, they spent their time before the bus arrival drawing the American flag on paper and then running through the house waving their flags. Both chose to wear shirts with the American flag imprint to celebrate Election Day, and hats that say “USA” on them.

How did you learn the voting process? Have you had the opportunity to explain the voting process to the younger generation?

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6 thoughts on “Teaching My Twins About the Voting Process

  1. I loved your post todayso patriotic! Go America! We’ll be celebrating with dinner out in honor of all the hard work and learning my kids have went through. Even if our candidate doesn’t win ( which I hope he does, for the sake of a free country to live in in the future) we will still celebrate. We live in America, after all. The greatest country on earth!

  2. Talynn,

    I’ve already told our kids that the 24/7 news programs will be on non-stop tonight and they can watch with me and the hubby.

    Love your comment!

    Christi

  3. Christi, that is a wonderful thing to do with your children. I learned about voting from my naturalized-citizen dad, who thought that voting was the most important part of becoming an American. I am proud to say that all I learned about politics and being a good citizen I learned from him 🙂

    And to answer your question from Friday. No … No Na-No for me again 🙂

    How are you doing with it this time?

    • Florence,

      Your Father sounds like an amazing man!

      No NaNo for me this year…I went on vacation for the weekend in Seattle instead :). Got to see family and friends so it was totally worth it.

      Christi

  4. This is FaNtAsTiC! I wish every parent took it as seriously as you do and took the time to stress the importance to their children. Just today, I heard a student say that her mom doesn’t vote because she doesn’t care. This makes no sense to me.

    You should get major cookies for this! 😀

    • L,

      I can’t comprehend someone who has an attitude of “don’t care”, especially since people have DIED to give her the right to vote.

      Such a shame, both for her and for her child who will probably grow up with the same apathetic attitude.

      Wait, did you say I get cookies? 😀 I’m in!

      Christi

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