As we make our way through a steady stream of school cancellations and the brains of our students slowly turn to mush, I’m looking forward to tonight’s opportunity to sharpen our pencils and get out the clipboards. We’re really excited to watch the State of the Union Address, or as Martin will likely call it, “Another Thing You Make Me Watch”.
To help keep our focus, we’ve created the Unofficial State of the Union Worksheet. Using this sheet, we’re going to track the usage of the terms we think are likely to be included in the speech. We’re going to keep it very simple, leaving tally marks each time we hear a phrase used. Now in our second year of SOTU Worksheets, we’ve done through a major reorg. For the 2014 edition, we’re grouping terms under topics that are likely to be covered. We’re hopeful that this will make it easier to track as the President is speaking on each subject.
And, as a bonus, we’ve created a new section – SOTU BUZZ. This section is left blank and can be filled out in any way you’d like. Here are some ideas we’re considering:
– Track the number of times the camera shows The First Lady
– Add buzz words that are used A LOT
– Track how long it takes for the first person at our house to fall asleep
– Track the number of times that individual citizens are named and shown by the camera
As always, I have explained to my children that watching the State of the Union is required by all U.S. Citizens that have access to the address. So, if you see them tomorrow, please don’t tell them otherwise. And if you play along, show them your completed worksheet. It will reinforce the other thing I’ve been telling them, which is that I am a woman of GREAT INFLUENCE.
Print it: State of the Union Worksheet 2014
Prefer last year’s edition? Go ahead and use it! Fortunately for me, the terms on last year’s list are likely contenders for this one as well.
I think it’s pretty well documented that around here, we love a good worksheet. Debates, Super Bowl Bingo, Lunch Log – we’re not picky. Give us a crisp worksheet, a clipboard, and a sharp #2 Dixon Ticonderoga, and we’re happy. At least 66% of our household is happy.
So, tomorrow night, Sophie and I will be sitting in front of the laptop with clipboards in hand while Martin moans with the unfairness of it all, as we watch the State of the Union.
To keep everybody’s attention, we’ve created the Unofficial State of the Union Worksheet. Using this sheet, we’re going to track the usage of the terms we think are likely to be included in the speech. We’re going to keep it very simple, leaving tally marks each time we hear a phrase used. We’re not going to worry about total accuracy and there’s no way to win. Unless of course, you count a night with clipboards and your children as a win. WHICH I DO.
Want to join us? Print your own!
Print it: State of the Union Worksheet
It doesn’t happen very often that I declare absolute control over what we watch on TV, usually opting not to watch at all while the kids get their fill of all things DISNEY/NICK/CARTOON NETWORK. But every once in awhile, there are events that I want to watch, requiring that I take temporary charge of the remote control. When this happens, I’ve found that there are two things that make this abrupt change in behavior much more acceptable:
1. Snack trays.
Tonight’s Presidential Debate is one of those TV watching occasions that I really don’t want to miss. Taking a page from my experience with the Oscars and the Super Bowl, I’ve created a worksheet for the kids to use during the debate. Armed with a pencil and clipboard, the worksheet will help to keep the kids engaged and listening as the debate happens.
Depending on their age and how much they understand, this may only last for a few minutes, but it gives me the chance to hear the candidates and the kids to start to understand the basics of civic responsibility. As second and fourth graders, I don’t expect that they will fully grasp the content of the debate or the positions of the candidates, but by watching the process they can start to understand that it is the responsibility of every voter to LISTEN, LEARN and DECIDE.
In each of the worksheet fields, I’ll ask the kids to write a few words or sentences to capture their thoughts – what they heard, what they liked about it, and what they’d like to learn more about. Lastly, I’ll ask them to make a decision based on what they know. I’d like the kids to understand that it is equally important to be INFORMED and TO TAKE ACTION.
Want to join us? Sharpen your pencil, grab a clipboard, and print your own chart below.
Print it: Debate Chart_2012