Caucus History and Iowa’s “First in the Nation” Status

What is a caucus? Why is Iowa's first? Why did Iowa shift to the caucus format? After researching these basic questions, class members debate the question of whether or not Iowa should maintain its "first in the nation" status for caucuses.

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Instructional Ideas

  • Have groups investigate the caucus and primary format used in their state
  • Preview the video of the 1968 Democratic Convention to determine if appropriate for your class and for the approach you will take with this lesson
Classroom Considerations

  • The first in a series of seven related resources focusing on the election process
Pros

  • The four-page packet includes a detailed plan, links to evidence that support each side of the debate, and worksheets
Cons

  • The activity presumes class members are familiar with debate protocols