Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Referendum Results: Our New Year Expectations

Christy Clanton
Bay District Schools


-Referendum Results: Our New Year Expectations- gives the class a meaningful voice in planning their semester activities as they survey and graph their choices.


The student solves problems by generating, collecting, organizing, displaying, and analyzing data using histograms, bar graphs, circle graphs, line graphs, pictographs, and charts.

The student analyzes real-world data to recognize patterns and relationships of the measures of central tendency using tables, charts, histograms, bar graphs, line graphs, pictographs, and circle graphs generated by appropriate technology, including calculators and computers.

The student knows that a citizen is a legally recognized member of the United States who has certain rights and privileges and certain responsibilities (e.g., privileges such as the right to vote and hold public office and responsibilities such as respecting the law, voting, paying taxes, and serving on juries).


-Paper and pencil for students
-Appropriate graphing software such as Graph Club loaded on each computer workstation for quick student access (with printing capability)
-Student copies of the -Graphing Rubric-
-Student copies of referendum ballot for voting
-Secret voting area and ballot box
-Word processor or software for generating the ballot copies


The teacher needs to:
1. Load graphing software and word processing software such as Microsoft Word at each computer station.
2. Make copies of Graphing Rubric and Referendum ballots for students.


1. Upon returning from the winter holidays, the class begins discussing -New Year's Resolutions.-

2. Ask the class, -What should we have as our class New Year's Learning Resolutions?-

3. Students then conduct individual surveys of their classmates by our class survey routine (Students number their papers #1-#36 and record each classmate's response by their assigned class number.)

4. Students then graph their results, choosing the type of graph that they prefer from bar, line, or picture graphs. Students print and evaluate their graphs using our Graphing Rubric.

5. Students share their Class Survey Graphs. Each listed graph entry then becomes a -proposal- for our upcoming referendum style vote called Referendum: Our New Year's Learning Resolutions. We type the proposals using the word processor to create our referendum voting ballot.

6. On voting day, we set up a private voting area in the loft of our treehouse, complete with a blanket-style curtain to guarantee secrecy. Votes are then counted by the team of the day and shared with the class in the form of a series of circle graphs. The information gathered can be used for teacher planning in the second semester.


Students self-assess using Graph Scoring Rubric. Additionally, during a teacher-student interview/conference the student explains orally to the teacher how the referendum allows him or her as a classroom citizen to take part in making decisions that affect the student's own life in the classroom by voting. An adequate explanation would include the fact that the student could submit proposals and vote.
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