Electing the President: Caucuses and Primaries
Duration: two (2) double-blocks (middle and high school), four (4) class periods (elementary school)
Goal: Students will understand how the American two-party system functions to accommodate interests that in other democratic countries are served by the multi-party parliamentary system..
Objective: Students will learn the process by which American presidents are selected and how that process functionally incorporates disparate political interests into a single governmental whole..
Essential Question: In a country with so many different political differences, factions, and interest groups, how is it that America routinely succeeds in selecting presidents capable of asserting executive power in a manner that is acceptable or at least tolerable for most citizens?
Common Core Standards Met: CCR English Language Arts Standards 7-10
21st-Century Skills Employed: Civic Literacy
Students’ names: _________________________________________________________
Oral Presentation Grading Rubric
General presentation (audience appeal)
Excellent = 5
Creativity, Originality, and Effort (aesthetic appeal of product)
Exceptional = 5
Applied Knowledge (use of material and concepts learned)
Solid application of learned material = 5
Comprehension (understanding of topic/assignment)
Excellent comprehension = 5
Grade Scale: 5 (A), 4 (B), 3 (C), 2 (D), 1 (F)
Non-tech: butcher paper, colored pens and/or pencils; computer access to Internet and Google suite (Google docs)
Primary and Secondary Sources
caucus: informal, local balloting often referred to as a “straw poll” to select delegates to a party nominating convention
primary: formal state balloting to select delegates to a party nominating convention
nominating convention: gathering of state party delegates that selects a political party’s presidential nominee
Electoral College: body of state delegates chosen through the process of national balloting and given the power to elect the president
Elections teaching resources at TeacherVision.
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