This week’s tip addresses the best ways to engage kids about the US’s political process during election week. Even if your kids have some years before they can vote, you can still help guide them toward becoming media-savvy participants in democracy.
Encourage your kids to think critically about political advertising and news sources, and push them to judge for themselves the credibility of online sources. For younger kids, turn to age-appropriate news sites such as HTE Kids News, TIME for Kids, Scholastic Kids Press Corps. Older kids can fact-check on their own; websites such as factcheck.org and politifact.com are independent fact-checking websites that check statements from the White House, Congress, candidates, and advocacy groups, and rate claims for accuracy.
If your kids aren’t aware of which candidates match their views, take them to isidewith.com or Project Vote Smart to learn about how their own opinions manifest in ballot measures and candidates running for office. Letting kids do their own research and make decisions about the elections helps develop their political consciousness, and allows them to feel more invested in the issues and debates they encounter during elections.
For more tips on steering kids through the political season, check out Common Sense’s blog.