Monday 6th May was ‘Voting Day’ at Holy Rosary for Grade 0 to 7s. It was not political, but rather a fun way for learners to understand democracy and voting by experiencing it in an age-appropriate way.
The school’s grade six teachers went above and beyond to make it a special experience by approaching the IEC, who thought it was a great idea, and was happy to give the school three official voting booths and a ballot box (these were used in the training of IEC officials before the election). The school had voter’s rolls, voting forms and pupils acting as officials of the process.
The voting station was set up in the school library and each grade had the opportunity to vote. First the girls had to produce their IDs that they made, then they had to be checked on the voter’s roll. Next, they had their fingers inked and then they went into the booths and placed their crosses. Finally, they placed their ballots in the box. The Grade 6’s were the officials at the voting station – they stamped the ballot papers, inked the girl’s thumbs, controlled access at the door and made sure that everything ran smoothly.
Learners could cast their votes for one of these options: Ice-Cream Party; Movie Party; Pyjama party; Dancing Party; Swimming Party and Tea party. The Pyjama party was victorious with 67.3% of the votes, and as such, learners will be able to attend school on the 20th May in their pyjamas and will have a ‘party’. Teachers and the school principal will be wearing their pyjamas too.
Yvette Bibis, a grade 6 teacher at Holy Rosary School, said, ‘As part of the Grade 6 syllabus, we teach the children about how South Africa is governed and about our magnificent democracy. I thought the best way for pupils to learn about it – besides just getting notes and seeing videos – was to actually experience the voting process. As it was a general election this year, it was a perfect time to do this: the girls’ parents would be voting, conversations would take place at home around this topic, and they would be able to say what it means to vote and talk about their experience.’
Holy Rosary School https://www.holyrosaryschool.website/