I created these materials as a way of capturing the Thanksgiving spirit while providing teachable moments for the electoral process and historical content.
As an interesting factoid for students, begin the activity by advising the class that, before the Bald Eagle was selected as the national bird of the United States, Benjamin Franklin had suggested that the Turkey be considered.
After the hook, have students work collaboratively in small groups to list the reasons why the Eagle or the Turkey would make the best President. Students should produce lists of facts from their prior knowledge.
When 5-7 minutes have passed, lead the class in a discussion or frame it as a Socratic Seminar or Philosophical Chairs activity. This is also a great time to introduce Roberts Rules of Order or to provide a mini lesson on the Presidential Debates and Candidate selection processes.
Once your class discussion is complete, have students cast their votes. Again, this is a great opportunity to introduce younger students to the electoral process to include writing in candidates.
Specifically, in this bundle you get:
1. A colorful graphic that can be displayed to generate interest in the lesson,
2. Black-line colorable pictures of the Turkey and Eagle for use as a brain break,
3. A black-line colorable picture of the Great Seal of the U.S.,
4. A teachers page with Turkey and Eagle Fast Facts and links to several on-line resources for additional information
5. A student ballot handout and voting tally sheet