Kids can learn about citizenship with this mock election game where they cast their ballot for their favorite candy bar.
One of our November pack meetings was about citizenship, so we played the candy bar election game. I hope you'll think it's one of the coolest Cub Scout November pack meeting ideas like we did!
With the change in the Cub Scouting program back in 2015, the Cub Scout pack meeting plan themes became the 12 points of the Scout Law. While citizenship isn't one of the the themes in the plans, you can still have a citizenship theme, or you can add the mock election game to the Loyal meeting. You can also use the instructions as a candy bar election lesson plan.
Citizenship Gathering Activity for Cub Scouts
As the Scouts are completing their word searches, there may be words they don't know–especially the Tigers. Leaders and parents can talk to them about what they mean. Love it when a fun activity becomes a teaching moment!
Mock Election Game
I got a wonderful mock election idea from Arlen Ward. On his old website, he had a post about electing your favorite candy bar. This was one of the kids' favorite Cub Scout games for pack meetings.
Here's how we did it.
- Set up props
- Cubmaster introduction
- Cub Scouts register to vote by filling out voter registration form
- Cub Scouts receive voter registration cards and awards
- Campaign managers make opening speeches
- Cub Scouts vote using four methods
- Den chiefs count ballots while campaign managers present commercials
- Winner is announced after each voting method
- Cub Scouts get candy bar
Props for Candy Bar Election
To give the election a more authentic feel, I made a ballot box and polling booth.
The ballot box was a simple shoe box with a square hole cut in the top. I wrapped it in white paper then taped on pictures of American flags plus a “Pack 297 Ballot Box” sign.
The polling booth is a trifold presentation board that you can get through my Amazon affiliate link. I covered the back with solid red wrapping paper and put a “polling place” sign on it. This gave the kids some privacy as they vote.
To add to the excitement, I ordered these campaign hats for the kids. Did you know they're called “skimmer hats?” I didn't.
Cubmaster Introduction of Mock Election Game
After our opening ceremony, our Cubmaster used this introduction:
The right to vote is a duty as well as a privilege. It is important for all citizens to vote in every election to make sure that we keep our democratic system of government. People who do not vote lose their voice in the government. You want to make sure that you are informed about the issues and the candidates before you vote. Tonight, we are going to have an important election. We're going to vote on your favorite candy bar! Throughout the meeting, you'll hear from our two candidates. But first, everyone must register as a voter. If you're not registered, you can't vote! Den chiefs, will you please pass out the voter registration forms? After you've completed your form, we'll call each rank to come forward to turn in your registration form. You'll get your voter registration card and the awards you've earned.
Register to Vote Before Awards Ceremony
Your election will feel much more authentic if the Cub Scouts have to register to vote first. Feel free to use the Voter Registration Forms that I created. Enter your email below to download them.
Cub Scout Candy Bar Election Awards Presentations
After the Scouts have filled these out, each rank was called forward. The Cubmaster called each Scout's name and announced the awards they had earned.
The Cub Scout received their Voter Registration Card (download below) and a Vote banner that contained his awards. You can find the instructions for making these banners in this post.
Opening Speeches by Campaign Managers
Next, we introduced our two campaign managers who had a couple of minutes to kick off their campaigns. Their campaigns were pretty funny!
Scouts Vote Four Ways
Make sure your Scouts are sitting with their dens and enlist the den leaders to help with this part.
Allow the kids to vote for their favorite candy bar using these four methods of voting.
- Each den gets one vote
- Each den gets votes based on the number of members (one vote for every two Scouts)
- Each den selects a representative from their den to vote for them
- Each Scout gets a vote
Your den leaders will most likely need to help lead this part–especially for the younger Scouts.
We did the one-Scout-one-vote election last, and that decided our winner.
Den Chiefs Run Election
We enlisted the help of our den chiefs to run the election.
Each den was called up to vote, and they took their voter registration card with them as they walked to the polling booth.
The Den Chiefs checked the Scouts' registered voter cards then gave them a ballot.
When all of the dens had voted, the Den Chiefs counted our ballots.
While they counted the votes, our campaign managers had a “commercial” for their candidate.
We finished off the night with the Scouts getting one of the winning candy bars! Don't forget to find out if any of your Cub Scouts have allergies!
Of all the Cub Scout pack meeting themes we've done, this one was the most exciting for me. And I think the Scouts loved it too!
What activities have you done to teach your den or pack about elections? Share them in the comments.
Yours in Scouting,
P.S. If you liked this pack meeting idea, sign up below for more Cub Scout information!