We don’t get out much so the idea of getting to go with me to vote is always exciting, no matter how unexciting it really is. As a matter of fact we early voted today and it took about 10 minutes from the time we entered the parking lot to the time we walked back out to the van. It was simple, touch the screen a few times and it’s over. They couldn’t wait to get their little hands on the touch screen. Everyone who could reach the ballot carefully took turns making our choices. They feel important going into the polling place and walking out with their “I voted early” stickers. It helps that the volunteers are always so nice and make a big fuss over them.
Since our oldest kids were really young we’ve always involved them in the election process. We read books about elections and presidents and of course government structures come up in school. As young children their questions were pretty basic but it’s interesting to see how their questions have gotten more thoughtful with age. Today we discussed how much power our elected officials really have and the idea of “checks and balances”. This was a great year to discuss the constitution and about making amendments to it. We had great conversations about the whole process and the best part was we didn’t even have to crack open a social studies book. I would encourage you to take you kids to vote, it really is a great way to start conversations about things that they need to learn about, they will be even more interested if you aren’t actually trying to teach them something and that’s the education we love to give as parents.
I tend to get as specific as they kids want to get with candidates. If they really want to know what a candidate believes about a particular subject then we look it up and discuss it. If they ask why we vote for a particular person they we talk about why. We discuss topics in a very age appropriate way and line them up with what the Bible says on those topics. We are teaching our kids to have a biblical worldview so this is very important to us. My hope is that 20 years from now they don’t believe what they believe because that’s what their parents believed but because that’s what the Bible teaches. I want them to base their beliefs on words they can actually point to, not words that come out of my mouth.
In short, go vote! It’s fun and you get to use a touch screen, you might even get a sticker!