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Teacher Resources by Grade
|1st - 2nd||3rd - 4th|
|5th - 6th||7th - 8th|
|9th - 10th||11th - 12th|
Vote for Me! Making Presidential Commercials Using Avatars
|Grades||6 – 12|
|Lesson Plan Type||Standard Lesson|
|Estimated Time||Five 50-minute sessions|
- identify the main points of a political platform.
- create a script for a political commercial for a president.
- use Voki as a media tool to present that commercial.
- Choose a commercial from Presidential Campaigns and Candidates or from The Living Room Candidate for a past election. Tell the students to think about the message as they listen. Project the commercial on the board or screen.
- After viewing discuss what issues this candidate is addressing. For example, if viewing George Bush’s 2000 ad from Presidential Campaigns and Candidates, discuss the following points
- What did Bush do for the state of Texas as governor?
- Why are his past accomplishments important?
- What can the viewer infer from this commercial are Bush’s concerns?
- What is the campaign slogan from the commercial?
- Also, encourage the students to contribute facts they know about the president for additional background information.
- Discuss the following ideas:
- Ask the class how a presidential candidate determines what his issues are.
- Discuss the idea of party platform.
- Use The American Presidency Project website to show the party platform for the candidate you selected.
- Compare the platform to the commercial.
- Explain to the class that now they will become producers and create commercials for past presidents.
- After logging into Voki in the Classroom, show the students where on this website they can find the instructions for the project. Go through the assignment, rubric, and expectations.
- Play the Voki sample or the one you have created.
- Hand out the Voki Rubric and play the sample again for the students to evaluate.
- Hand out Voki Preparation printout.
- Assign each student (or allow students to choose) a president to research so that the class is ready to research in the next session. Have students write down their candidates on the Voki Preparation printout. Tell students to bring this form with them for sessions two and three.
- Direct the class to the wiki for the selected research websites or hand out the printout Selected Websites.
- Have the Suggested Print Materials as well as any other books on past elections available for the class to use.
- Instruct students to complete the Voki Preparation printout.
- As students work, check for the following:
- Time on task as that is a category for the rubric.
- Students are finding at least three issues for their candidates.
- For most presidents, students should be able to find a campaign slogan.
- Assign students to write a script for their commercial that lasts 75-90 seconds. You can have the students directly submit their scripts through the Voki website or have them write out the scripts.
- Before this session occurs, make sure students have completed their scripts (or allow time for them to finish).
- Have the students find their presidents at The White House: Presidents so that they will have images to match to their avatars.
- Hand out the Voki Instructions printout.
- Open a second window or tab to model for the students how to login to Voki.
- Model for the students how to create avatars to resemble their presidents.
- Depending on which option you have chosen, model for the students how to use either voice recording or text to speech options.
- Model for students how to change the background and discuss what type of background would be appropriate.
- Allow students time to work on their Voki commercials.
- As students are working, ask the students questions about their candidates’ political platforms.
- Pair students together to use the Voki Rubric to evaluate each other’s commercials.
- Remind students that their commercials must be completed before the next session.
- Hand out The Issues printout and instruct students to complete these as they view each other’s commercials.
- Have each student share his/her Voki.
- After each commercial allow time for students to ask questions. For example, they might want to know if the president achieved his goals. This discussion might lead to what students research next.
- After all commercials have been shown, have a mock election between all the presidents represented.
- After the vote, allow students to explain their rationale behind their votes, via a discussion or a short paragraph.
- After more research, have students write a paragraph comparing the president’s political platform to what he achieved during his time in office. Students can also address why the president did not achieve his platform goals.
- The American Presidency Project includes farewell and inaugural addresses from some presidents. Students could compare and contrast these in formal essays, among other ways.
- Have students create another commercial for an opposing candidate.
- Have students try the Presidential Campaign Slogan quiz at Infoplease.
- If funds are not available for Voki in the Classroom, students over age thirteen can sign up for their own Voki accounts and share the links for their media products on the class wiki. For those under thirteen, students could present their commercials to the class as if they were the presidential candidates.
- If you used Voki in the Classroom, you still might want to post links for the commercials on the class wiki for parents and other community members to enjoy.
- Show the commercials to other classes in the school and hold a mock election between all the presidents represented.
- Use the Voki Rubric to evaluate the students' commercials.
- Evaluate the Voki Preparation printout, written scripts, and The Issues printout for completion.
- Question the students as they work on their Vokis about the political platform for their presidents.