The article that I chose to look in regards to Power and Authority in the classroom is not an article at all. The resource package that I looked at is called Building Future Voters and it is intended for grade six students. This resource is focuses on engaging students in elections, democracy and voting so that they will be engaged citizens that will vote.
Let’s quickly look at the context of voting in Canada. In the 2011 Federal election, only 61.1% of eligible Canadians came out to vote according to the Elections Canada Website. There was a large gap between which age groups came out to vote. Only 38.8% of Canadians ages 18-24 came out to vote while 75.1% citizens ages 65-74 came out to vote. This is a sign that the younger generation does not see the importance in voting like the older generation does. One way that we can change this as educators is to have lessons and units that engage students in democratic processes so that they see the importance of their one vote. By providing educators with resources such as this resource package, that I will elaborate on later, will help create engaged young citizens of today’s youth.
What is in this resource package you may ask. Well let us take a look. This resource was made in Alberta by Government officials and teachers in various schools in the year 2008. As this resource talks about encouraging students to be active voters, it’s goal is to encourage students to get involved in democratic processes, see the value of democracy and when they are of age, be active and engaged citizens in voting. Even though this is an Albertan resource, it is still relevant to Saskatchewan students as we still talk about being involved in democratic actions and government elections. Although this resource was made for grade six students in Alberta, it can be transferred to grade 5 social studies in Saskatchewan. The outcome that fits the best with this resource package is PA 5.2: Explain the purposes and functions of governance structures in Canada, including First Nations systems and those patterned on the Westminster parliamentary system.
One thing that I really like about this resource is that it lays out the sequence of learning about democracy on pages 9 and 10 of the document. This is helpful if you are a Saskatchewan teacher or from another province and want to adapt this unit to your classroom. These learning sequences give you an idea of where to go in your teaching so that students end the unit understanding that democracy is important and that being involved in democracy is important as a Canadian. This resource provides a structure for inquiry with students as well as what is the purpose of each step of the inquiry process and why is it important. The vocabulary and assessment tools built into this document is very helpful and beneficial for teachers who are evaluating and wanting to use this resource.
The Building Future Voters resource also provides educators with lesson ideas, rubrics and differentiation tools to help students understand and become engaged in the material. This resource is an excellent tool for educators who are looking to find a starting point and framework for a unit around democracy in the classroom and the country.
This is a document that I will be adding to my toolbox to help me if I am ever in the position of teaching grade five students about Power and Authority in my future.
Until next time, thank you for reading!