What Do You Get When 8th Graders Join 1st Graders to Read MONSTER NEEDS YOUR VOTE?

Posted on: Feb 26, 2016

Social Consciousness in the Community

On Februrary 11th, 8th graders of Anwatin Middle School of Minneapolis, MN paired up with a class of 1st graders at Bryn Mawr Elemenrary to read about civic engagement. The result? A lot of giggles, wiggles, chitchat, and critical thinking. It was the perfect blend of a FUN book, a GREAT civic lesson, and a POWERFUL message about democracy, making good choices, and standing up for what you believe in.

This buddy reading activity was certainly timely, especially in a school that serves as an official caucus and polling location.


What's The BIG IDEA?

The BIG IDEA from the author, Paul Czajak, shows the difference between needs and wants... a message 1st graders, 8th graders, and teachers could all understand! The first grade teacher said daily voting is commonplace and helps steer classroom decision-making.


Writing Letters to Our Senator


Post-reading discussion resulted in a lively question and answer session, in which students worked together to compose letters to their senators about what their communities need. Among many great ideas, friendship, healthy food, and parks ranked the highest on the list of things these kids felt their neighborhoods needed most. This activity came from the free downloadable Educator Guide that supplements Monster Needs Your Vote, and can be found at www.monstervotes.com

Each older student received a "MONSTER FOR PRESIDENT!" button and each younger student received a book and an I VOTED sticker.


Kids Influence Change


We ended the day with a demonstration of paper ballots and voting box facsimiles. These were compliments of our nonprofit partner, Kids Voting Minneapolis, who has observed over the years how many kids are responsible for convincing their parents to vote in elections.


And We're Only Just Getting Started!

This was just the first of many local (and hopefully national) partnering activities to engage K-12 students in a conversation about the democratic system.

At Mighty Media Press, we are a mission-based publisher who doesn’t just “talk the talk.” We “walk the walk.” We believe kids are smart! They can comprehend the importance of democracy to become life-long active citizens.


What's Next?

Stay tuned for the Minnesota Public Radio's free Rock The Cradle family event on March 6, 2016 at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, 11 am-5 pm. We are sponsoring the DJ Story Time, featuring an interactive voting activity, and photo op with Monster that earns each participant a button, gift card, and Kids Voting Minneapolis information.

See you there!

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