No matter what your political affiliation, you’d have to have been living under a rock to miss the Democratic National Convention this past week. Politics are on everybody’s mind, and our kids want to get in on the act. Finding ways for them to broaden their knowledge without exposing them to mudslinging is a great exercise for all of us—I know that since having to explain things to my children, it’s really changed how I view politics (and how).
Fortunately there’s no shortage of great stops on the web for kids to learn about what’s happening and feel like they’re a part of Decision 2008. Here’s a few of our favorites:
- Leave it to PBS to come up with something as brilliant as ZOOMout the Vote. I probably have a soft spot for this one because ZOOM was one of my favorite shows as a kid (and I’m tickled that my offspring enjoy it, too), but ZOOM has always had that crucial activist component to it, so this makes perfect sense. Let your kids find out what others are concerned about as we approach the election, and find ways they can make a difference.
- Scholastic News Online has broad coverage of Election 2008, complete with activities for the kids and tips for teachers and parents. Of course, if you need more than just a few tips, there’s an entire parents’ guide available, too.
- TIME for Kids offers the Election Connection, with articles and activities aplenty.
- Of course, once again Nickelodeon is running Kids Pick the President, which has the added bonus of kid reporters on the campaign trial—my kids really enjoy seeing that, and it makes things feel more relevant for them, I think. There are also message boards here for older kids who want to really get into political discussions with others.
- And if all this political talk is feeling a little heavy, to you, maybe you’d rather the kids just check out Peanuts Rocks the Vote, where the nominees are all characters from Charles Schulz. Maybe this isn’t quite as serious, but how can you resist voting for Snoopy for president??
Frankly, I’m feeling a little jealous that the election resources for adults aren’t nearly as much fun. Hmph.