Third-, fourth- and fifth-graders in Mary Gubala‘s classes have been learning all about elections this month. On Monday, Oct. 29, all that learning came in handy as voting began for students in the National Student Mock Election.
“The mock election shines a light on what might happen next Tuesday,” said Gubala to her students, “since students tend to vote like their parents.”
Gubala’s fifth-graders shared some of the things they’ve learned in her class:
- Mackenzie: I learned how old you have to be to run for President. (35!)
- Jaida: Democrats and Republicans each have an animal. (Democrats, the donkey; Republicans, the elephant.)
- Austin: You can’t vote for Obama and Ryan. (Or Romney and Biden.)
- Burks: The electoral college determines the vote.
- Jake: They [the parties] try to get diversity when they chose their candidates.
A few of the students (Burks Chisom, Quinton Williams, Jake Sowers, Gray Howard and Mackenzie Brodrecht) joined me to chat a little more about the mock election.
“I usually like to vote” during mock elections, Jake said. ‘This year is so hard. I had to think about what both of them can do.”
“I thought it was going to be boring,” Mackenzie said about one of the debates, “but it was interesting.”
“What surprised me the most,” Jake said, “is that they said Obama won [the debate he watched], but it looked like Mitt won.”
Burks said he and his brother like to portray the candidates and have debates of their own–brother is Will Chisom, a senior at Salem High School. Apt, because Burks said that to him, the candidates sounded “like arguing brothers” during the debates. Burks said he usually beats his brother during their debates (naturally!).
The fifth-graders said they talk to their friends and siblings about the upcoming election and the candidates, and that, contrary to the expectations, a lot of them voted differently during their mock election than their parents plan to vote during the election on Tuesday.
Results from the West Salem mock election will be available after voting closes Friday night, according to Gubala. Check back here for the results from the mock election!