The closer we get to the 2016 United States election, the crazier the news seems to be. This has become extremely difficult for teachers who are faced with the challenge of discussing the events in class without going into the more scandalous details. While there are likely many teachers who have chosen to ignore the election in their classrooms, others are jumping in head first and getting the students to weigh in.
The election is often a topic of conversation for students, however this year it has been filled with content that is inappropriate for young children. To combat this, teachers have tried a few methods. One teacher assigned the first debate as an optional bonus assignment where they could watch the debate and then write their quick thoughts on a post-it and stick it to the wall. This resulted in the following answers:
"They talked a lot.""They interrupted each other a lot.""Trump yelled at Hillary.""Donald yelled at the Chinese."
Another teacher asked parents if they could watch the second debate and pre-approve a 15 minute chunk that would be suitable to show in class. That way, they would be able to skip the discussion of the allegation against Trump for groping women. The students were then asked to write something positive about both candidates.
The goal that teachers have is to teach kids about learning to respect people they disagree with. They also want to inform the students on who might be the next president of America. And the kids are picking up on a surprising amount. Shannon Geraghty from Forest Park High in Woodbridge, VA explained what the kids really think of the election.
"They believe that neither candidate is dealing with the important issues, the things that are important to the kids, whether it's about immigration or college tuition. They say that too much of the debate and too much of the media is spending time on the salacious issues." Shannon Geraghty
What do you think? Should teachers be discussing the election in class or leave it to their families?