Election Day always provides lots of teachable moments. Normally we do a light school day, if at all, so as to leave time to watch the coverage and answer questions and make predictions. Our children are usually very interested in the process and ask some great questions. Okay, well maybe it IS so they can get out of Tuesday's algebra lesson, but nevertheless they are learning about our country's system of self-government, and that's as valuable as any one day's math problems.
This morning, Aubrey's boys were asking her some questions about the candidates, and the topic of abortion came up. She realized that this was something they'd never really explained to the boys, so today was the opportunity to do that. They were understandably upset to think that anyone would kill a baby on purpose; David, of course, was so upset he couldn't finish his breakfast. A sad way to start Election Day, but a necessary and realistic look for the children at why we need to research the views of the candidates as best we can.
There will be opportunities all through the day and evening to introduce and emphasize how our government runs, what the candidates stand for, and what our own responsibilities are. I'll be looking for ways to use the election as a means to teach government in real time!
Okay, I'm off to make our traditional Election Day Senate Navy Bean Soup :-)