Vote the Rock
To start this activity, students will each choose a rock or mineral. You can either have them do this randomly by drawing a name out of a bowl or students can choose their own. Once students know which one they are trying to get elected, students will research and find out as much information as they can about their rock or mineral. For example, if a student is researching marble, he will find out what marble is used for, what type of rock it is, where it can be found, what it looks like, and any other information. This is the research part of the activity.
After students research, they create an election poster. The poster should have pictures and facts about the rocks. Show students examples of campaign posters and set how many facts or photos they must include. For example, younger primary grades might need two photos per poster with five facts. Older elementary students might need four photos and ten facts. These should be done on large poster board and hung up for display.
Students also create a short, campaign speech, regarding the subject: Why should my rock or mineral be elected as the best in this classroom? Each student delivers their campaign speech, which will also work on public speaking skills and most likely cover some Language Arts objectives. While speeches are being delivered, students should be encouraged to take notes, so they can make an informed decision on which rock or mineral they are going to vote for.
Finally, students will have voting day. You will need to make the rule that students may not vote for their own rock, or you may have each candidate in the election receiving one vote. Tally up the votes and announce the results of which rock was voted the best in your class election. Create a large display, where this rock is really celebrated. You can also have runner-ups if you would like.