These upcoming elections are important to us, but even more important to our students. Decisions made by the councils we elect will affect the future of the country that our students will inherit. Research has shown that if young people don't take their first chance to vote, it becomes a habit that is hard to break. If you want to help break that cycle you can help by following these simple steps...
1. ASK THE QUESTION
Take 5 minutes at the end of a lecture or class to ask your students if they intend to vote by a show of hands. They might never have been asked before, and just knowing that you care whether they are going to vote might help to them realise the importance of voting. Also, research has shown that by stating their intention publicly to their peers, they might also help to encourage each other to vote.
2. MAKE IT EASY
Even when people have an intention to vote, they might not always follow through, so make sure they have all the information.
3. HELP THEM MAKE A PLAN
Encourage them to think about their plan for voting day. Research has shown that getting people to think about their plans for voting, is one of the most effective ways of helping to ensure people turnout. So help them find their polling station, (they can find out where to vote nearer the time using this link https://wheredoivote.co.uk/). Finally also encourage them to put the time they will vote in their calendar.
And finally... share this page with other teachers you know!
Or download these tips as a poster you can put up in your staff room...
19th April, 5pm
Deadline to register to vote
20th April, 5pm
Deadline to register for a postal vote
6th May 7am - 10pm
We are two UK behavioural scientists interested in improving democratic engagement. We hope this site will enable other teachers to use behavioural insights to get their students engaged in the democratic process for the first time.