Unit and lesson plans prepared by teachers using CongressLink resources and features.
The Comic Book Campaign: The Illinois U.S. Senate Race, 1950
In the 1950 Senate campaign in Illinois, the incumbent senator, Scott Lucas, a Democrat and the Majority Leader of the Senate, used a comic book to persuade voters of his qualifications. This lesson asks students to (1) identify the messages the comic book intended to convey; (2) describe the qualities of the candidate the book emphasized; (3) evaluate the effectiveness of the comic book approach in depicting those qualities; and (4) prepare a comic book storyboard for one of today's candidates.
In this lesson, students will encounter some of the problems legislators face in accomplishing the goal of reapportionment. As a group, students will answer questions about reapportioning an imaginary state.
Every Vote Counts
Students will see the importance of voting and that every vote counts.
Finding Purpose in Political Propaganda Mailers
This lesson will help students learn how to critically analyze political propaganda mailers. They will understand how political mailers can be used to better inform themselves on a political issue or candidate. Students will use research to develop an informed opinion on a political issue or candidate and they will participate in the political process via letter writing.
the Seat: A Congressional Election Simulation
Political scientist Jeffrey Bernstein created this simulation of a congressional election to provide students with a solid understanding of what determines who wins and who loses these contests.
Elect Me! Creating a Campaign Platform and Advertisement
Students will be a candidate for an election as a United States Representative or Senator in the upcoming election. They will need to decide with party fits their political views best, plan, and present a 3-5 minute campaign commercial about them as a candidate, their platform, and why the voters should vote for them.
Noncompetitive Elections for Congress
American democracy faces a crisis – the crisis of noncompetitive elections. More and more, American elections consist of incumbents cruising to victory. In this lesson, students will be able to explain why congressional elections are noncompetitive, analyze the pros and cons of electing incumbents to Congress, and analyze the need for congressional term limits.
What Makes a Great Campaign Brochure?
This lesson invites students to compare and contrast the campaign brochures of two candidates for the U.S. Senate from Illinois in 1950 in order to (1) determine what elements make for an effective brochure (both content and design); (2) assess the relative effectiveness of the two examples; (3) understand what messages a campaign brochure intends to send; and (4) appreciate the similarities and differences between political campaigns of today and half a century ago.