Voter Turnout Debate

Hi Class! Our first blog writing activity of the year is on the topic of voter turnout. The goals in the activity are to write a persuasive paragraph containing a BIG IDEA, several supporting details, and a strong conclusion. Here are your choices:

  • The voting age will be lowered to 14 to increase the amount of potential voters.
  • Eligible voters who do not cast a ballot will be fined or imprisoned.
  • All voting will be done online.

Your initial steps are to choose one of the three topics, then post a strong opening sentence containing your BIG IDEA. This sentence clearly states a position on the issue and gives the main reason in support of your stance.

Post your sentence and wait for feedback. Once Mr. Bell has replied, begin crafting your entire paragraph. In all, there will be at least five great sentences in this activity (big idea, supporting detail 1, 2, 3, and a conclusion).

Your opening sentence is due before you leave the computer lab today. Once you have posted your sentence and are waiting, use the remaining time to complete the ‘Examine the Options‘ activity.

This entry was posted in General. Bookmark the permalink.

131 Responses to Voter Turnout Debate

  1. Max says:

    All voting from now on shall be done online for convenience, and higher privacy standards.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Thanks Max, it appears you have two big ideas here. Is there a way to group them as one main idea?

    • Max says:

      All voting from now on is to be done online for convenience, not just for the voter, but for the election managers as well. First of all, the convenience on the voters hand is broadened because of the reason, you do not even need to leave your office to choose your representative. On the election managers side, the votes are electronically and accurately counted, for an instant result. Last of all, it is convenience for other parties to instantly find what parts of the country like what parties, therefore knowing where to spend more time campaigning. After reading this, it is very safe to say, voting online is the easiest fastest and most convenient way to go.

      • Mr. Bell says:

        Nicely done Max!

        Be sure to use an apostrophe to show possession:
        – on the voter’s hand (the hand belonging to the voter)
        – manager’s side

        Also, use a comma to in the list of superlatives in your conclusion: easiest, fastest and most…

  2. Kailen says:

    It is a good idea to lower the age to vote because I believe that younger people can do just as much as older people.

  3. Madison says:

    18 is the perfect age to vote at because 14 would be way to young and they will not understand it.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Good start! I’m eager to see what you think is difficult to understand at the age of 14 but not the age of 18.

      • Madison says:

        18 is the perfect age to vote at because 14 would be way to young, and it would be a lot of work for them like they would have to get a ride there and they might not watch the news, so they wont understand what everyone wants to do when they are prime minister as well. They wont under stand it as well as a 18 year old would because they will and have more understanding about voting. And that is why I know that 14 is to young.

  4. Liam hazelwood says:

    it a good idea to do it online because there lots of people online today even old people.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Start with a capital letter Liam.

      Now, your start contains more supporting ideas than a big idea. Perhaps state that voting online will provide better access to more people. Later on, you can add the details about who would benefit.

  5. Kendall says:

    If we allow younger citizens to vote for prime minister, we have more votes and that will give us a more accurate result.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Good start! I look forward to seeing your supporting details related to your argument about accuracy.

      One thing to note in our system, we do not vote directly for our Prime Minister. The PM is the leader of the party that has the most members elected.

      • Kendall says:

        We must allow younger citizens to vote for there preferred party, therefore have more votes and that will give us a more accurate result.

        • Mr. Bell says:

          Rework the later half of the sentence. The work ‘therefore’ seems awkward. Perhaps:

          We must allow younger citizens to vote for their preferred party because more votes will give us a more accurate result.

          Quick Fix:
          – their (belongs to them)
          – the phrase ‘give us’ can be replace by the word ‘yield’ or ‘produce’

  6. Noah says:

    Voting online is the best way to vote

  7. Jacob says:

    voting age should be reduced to people 14 years and older because it is a good choice, it would improve voter turnout, and it would overall make the election better

    • Mr. Bell says:

      First fix: sentences begin with a capital letter and end with punctuation.

      Your statement is too general because the word ‘good’ is overused. What specific thing is good?

  8. Alison says:

    14 year old’s should be able to vote, and it should be a legal.

  9. marrie says:

    The voting age must be lowered to 14 because people are willing to let them serve you food in a restaurant which could potentially poison you, so if you can trust them to not poison you then you should really trust them to vote for the prime minister.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      You’re right that we entrust kids with many things at a young age, so why not voting. Simplify your opening sentence into something about responsibility, then go into your examples to support your argument.

  10. Colby says:

    I think that the voting age should be reduced to 14 because that would make a lot more people vote because when we are older we have more stuff that are more important to do 😀

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Avoid jargon such ‘more stuff’. Instead, use a specific example when trying to convince. What main improvement will occur if more people vote?

      • Colby says:

        there wont be close victory’s for the candidates and more people will chip in money for the candidates

        • Mr. Bell says:

          I’m not sure if this phrase is your big idea for the opening sentence or some supporting details.

          Quick Fix:
          – 1 victory
          – several victories
          – an apostrophe is never used to make a noun plural

  11. Copter says:

    I think that voting online is a Brilliant idea! Because if a old geezer cant walk very far, they can go on their laptop and vote online.

  12. Wesley says:

    I think that children should vote over the age of 14 because I think they have the right to vote,I mean 16 year olds can drive why cant 14 year olds put in a name on the internet :/

  13. Paige says:

    I’m Tired of this I think we should make a stand for our selves and Only vote online!

  14. Isabella says:

    Voting online is a terrible idea because people can hack in and change the prime minister, which can affect a lot of people.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      You raise a good point about the security argument. I’m interested in how you will argue that the current system (people putting ballots in a locked box) will be safer than an online one.

  15. Jacob says:

    Voting age has to be reduced to 14 years and older because it is a genius idea, it would improve voter turnout by a landslide and will make a difference in elections

  16. luken murray says:

    I think that if they were to lower the eligibility rate they would raise the rate of voters and that would give a more sufficient toll. And that is why I believe that making 14 teen the eligible age a great idea.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      What do you mean by ‘sufficient toll’?

    • Luken Murray says:

      I think that if they were to lower the eligibility rate they would raise the rate of voters and that would give a more sufficient total of voters. And that is why I believe that making 14 teen the eligible age a great idea. Also for them to allow people to vote online would be great mistake because it will give users an ability to hack the system and post the voters identity on other website. So in a lot of respect a large margin of Canadians would disagree with the fact.

      • Mr. Bell says:

        It is unclear what argument you are trying to make. It appears your BIG IDEA is to improve voter turnout by lowering the age for voters to become eligible. What benefits are related to this (three supporting details).

  17. Savi says:

    14 is a fantastic age to start voting, because people all around the country are willing to let them work, they should be allowed to vote for the leaders of the country!

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Good connection Savi. Now, back up a step and state that young teens are allowed other responsibilities before they are allowed to vote, then use work and other examples to support your argument.

      • Savi says:

        14 is a fantastic age to start voting, because people all around the country are willing to let them work, they should be allowed to vote for the leaders of the country!
        Firstly, kids as young as 9 or 10 are allowed to take care of your kids, that is a huge responsibility. Anything could happen, you are trusting preteens/teens with your children.
        Also, in just 2 years, chances are that they are going to be hauling around 4000 pounds of metal (If you didn’t understand that, I meant driving cars,) possibly right beside you.
        Finally, there are a ton of younger citizens that are interested in the election, there would be a huge difference in the voter turnout this year.
        In conclusion, you can trust teenagers! They get all these responsibilities at such a young age, why can’t we trust them with voting?

        • Mr. Bell says:

          Well said Savi. Next, when typing a paragraph, there is no need to press enter after each sentence; simply put a space after the period and begin your next sentence.

  18. Chris says:

    I think that all voters will be done online.Because some old people can’t walk and younger people are always online at Facebook,Instagram and Twitter.If they do it online It would be AWESOME.

  19. Liesl says:

    Eligible voters who do not cast a ballot must not be thrown in prison or fined, it’s a democratic right which people need to have choice and say in.

    • liesl says:

      Eligible voters who do not cast a ballot must not be thrown in prison or fined, it’s a democratic right that people need to have choice and say in. First of all, forcing citizens to vote with the threat of punishment will draw in votes that have no thought or care in them, this will negatively disrupt the voting system and results.

      • Mr. Bell says:

        Great first supporting detail! I can hardly wait for the next two!

      • Liesl says:

        Eligible voters who do not cast a ballot must not be thrown in prison or fined, it’s a democratic right that people need to have choice and say in. First of all, forcing citizens to vote with the threat of punishment will draw in votes that have no thought or care in them, this will negatively disrupt the voting system and results. Secondly, if many people hastily cast votes this could dramatically affect Canada in the future, if that party only won by those thoughtless votes. Lastly, Canada is a democracy which means we have a right to voting,language, religion and etc., stripping us of our right to vote is conflicting with our democratic society, so what happens to our freedom of speech and religion when the rules of democracy are broken? To sum it all up, punishing citizens for not casting a ballot is a careless idea that would bring upon Canada many problems like an unstable democracy, future problems with leaders that shouldn’t have been picked and hasty votes.

        • Liesl says:

          Take out that comma between future and if it doesn’t work well.

        • Mr. Bell says:

          Superb paragraph Liesl! You’ve supported your big idea with relevant details and have crafted a paragraph that flows smoothly – well done!

          Quick Fix:
          – There is no need to say, “and etc.” Other phrases to use are ‘among others’ or ‘and other freedoms’.

          • Liesl says:

            Eligible voters who do not cast a ballot must not be thrown in prison or fined, it’s a democratic right that people need to have choice and say in. First of all, forcing citizens to vote with the threat of punishment will draw in votes that have no thought or care in them, this will negatively disrupt the voting system and results. Secondly, if many people hastily cast votes this could dramatically affect Canada in the future if that party only won by those thoughtless votes. Lastly, Canada is a democracy which means we have a right to voting,language, religion and other freedoms, stripping us of our right to vote is conflicting with our democratic society, so what happens to our freedom of speech and religion when the rules of democracy are broken? To sum it all up, punishing citizens for not casting a ballot is a careless idea that would bring upon Canada many problems like an unstable democracy, future problems with leaders that shouldn’t have been picked and hasty votes.

            • Mr. Bell says:

              Well said Liesl – your arguments are connected and it has a great voice!

              Let’s say voter turnout decreases to below a 50% turnout rate. Is there a point where some sort of incentive or punishment must be in place? Is it reasonable to choose our leaders if less that half the citizens cast a ballot?

              • Liesl says:

                Hello Mr.Bell,
                I think if the voter turnout were to ever reach a drastically low point there should be steps taken to ensure that a punishment is the only way to resolve it. Some solutions are; more advertisement on social media, classes and lessons made to teach people the importance of voting and simply teaching people about politics and government because people being oblivious to politics and government and not making an effort to learn is a major reason why people don’t vote. We need to constantly shove voting into their face and make them want to do it, we need to show them some advantages and have them wanting to learn more about politics and government. Regarding your other question, I believe that it wouldn’t be suitable or effective for us to choose our leaders if the voter turnout was less than 50%. This could result in some very negative effects for Canada not only law wise but from an economic standpoint things could go very bad if the wrong party was elected.

                • Mr. Bell says:

                  Great thoughts Liesl, thanks for sharing them! Currently, only about one out of three Canadians under the age of 24 vote. Could you imagine the impact if more young people voted?

  20. jordyn says:

    voting online would be easier for others because it gives them more privacy for there vote and it would save money on gas for travelling..

    • Mr. Bell says:

      You’ve got many supporting details here Jordyn. What is the one BIG IDEA? Privacy? Saving money?

      Quick Fix:
      – there (not here but there)
      – they’re (they are)
      – their (belongs to them…their vote)

  21. Kailen says:

    It is a good idea to lower the age limit to 14 because I believe that younger people are just as capable as older people

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Good start Kai, I look forward to seeing your comparisons about capabilities.

      Remember to punctuate your sentence.

    • Kailen huber says:

      It is a good idea to lower the age limit to 14 because younger people are just as capable as older people.
      Young people are able to dive a car down the highway at 80 km an hour so I don’t see the reason the are not aloud to vote. My second reason they should lower the voting age to 14 is, 12 or 11 year old kid baby sit your children which a lot more responsibility then crossing off a box on a piece of paper. The conclusion of my argument to the debate is, we need to make a stand for us young people in letting us vote because no buddy should just let older people to make are decisions in the vote,we work to get grouches and we want vote for who we are working for.

      • Mr. Bell says:

        Most of your argument makes sense, although there are some fixes to examine:
        – drive a car (not dive)
        – aloud means ‘out loud’; allowed means ‘permitted’
        – use ‘nobody’ rather than ‘no buddy’

        What do you mean when you write: we work to get grouches?

        Did you mean groceries?

  22. Noah says:

    Voting online would improve voter turnout, instead of getting in your car and driving you could just login to facebook, twitter, or instagram and post: I vote for #conservative

    • Mr. Bell says:

      What is one main point related to improving voter turnout? You’ve gone into a scenario without making your BIG IDEA clear.

      WE are working on writing a persuasive paragraph, as such, adding, “I vote #conservative” serves no purpose.

  23. Noah says:

    I Give up 🙁

      • Noah says:

        Because I think voting online is a good idea because people don’t have to waste precise time and money to get in the car and drive somewhere voting online would make it that much easier but apparently that’s
        a bad idea 🙁

        • Mr. Bell says:

          No, Noah, it’s not a bad idea. Your opening sentence must state the main point. In your case it is about either saving time or money. Once you’ve stated your BIG IDEA, use the examples for your supporting details.

  24. kionna says:

    I think it is very smart idea to start letting 14 year old kids vote because it gives them something to do and makes them feel like they are the part of something.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Your connection to making youth feel involved is wonderful. I look forward to your examples of what they will feel a part of.

    • kionna says:

      I think it is fantastic idea to start letting 14 kids vote because it makes them they are part of BC. And for the voting online is even better cause once you around 11 you start to get addicted to being online. And gives them a better what is going on in BC.

      • Mr. Bell says:

        Connect your supporting details to your big idea of being a part of something. Your start is good, then you switch to online issues that aren’t related to your big idea.

        Quick Fix:
        – use because not cause when you are giving reasons (He slid and fell because the sidewalk was icy. The icy sidewalk was the cause of his fall.)

  25. Colby says:

    I think that the voting age should be reduced to 14 because that would make a lot more people vote because when we are older we have more stuff that are more important to do.

  26. (:**Paige**:) says:

    Voting online is a great Idea because would if you had to go all the way to New York just to put a name on a piece of paper when you could just stay home go online and send the vote instead.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Understand that when we vote, we do not travel too far in most cities (though rural areas may have some travel). Sun up the main benefit about voting online: it’s convenient.

  27. Copter says:

    I think that voting online is a Brilliant idea! Because if an old geezer cant walk very far, he can just go on his laptop and vote online.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      So, your BIG IDEA is improved access. Rather than get straight to an example of an elderly person, simply state that the improved accessibility is the biggest benefit.

  28. Aurora says:

    I feel that the age of voting should go down to at least 16 for it won’t only allow many many more people to vote and raise the population of voters but will also encourage Canadian citizens to pay more attention to the election and maybe even donate a few bucks!

    • Mr. Bell says:

      There are many ideas in this sentence. Simplify it to one BIG IDEA, then use some of the other details to support it.

      Add some power to your argument by eliminating the ‘I’ statement: The voting age must be lowered…

  29. Kyle says:

    I think people that are 16 and older should vote because 14 is a little too young for voting because of their knowledge, education.

  30. alyssa says:

    The voters must not go too jail for not voting because some people don’t wanna vote.

  31. (:**Paige**:) says:

    never mind the other to sentences I’m making a new one

  32. (:**Paige**:) says:

    I think we should allow people at the age of 14 and up because if they can baby sit or get cash by a job, Then I think there capable of doing a vote.

  33. Alison says:

    14 year old’s need to vote, and it must be a legal.

    14 year old’s need to vote, because by this age they are getting jobs. They are becoming their own person. These people are living in this word, and the 14 year old’s are going to make this world in the future. They will be adults and have there own family’s , their family’s will be rised here.

    It’s their world, and it’s their future, they should have a right to vote.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Here are your next steps Alison:

      – Include the main reason in your opening sentence. What single idea ties all of your supporting details together?
      – Use transition words to connect your sentence.

      • Alison says:

        14 year old’s need to vote.

        14 year old’s need to vote, because around this age they are getting jobs. Their becoming their own person. These people are living here, they are going to make this world there future. They will become adults and have there own family’s. Their family’s will be rised here.

        It’s their world, and it’s their future they should have a right to vote.

        • Mr. Bell says:

          Use ‘must’ in place of ‘need to’ to have a stronger impact: Fourteen year old citizen must vote because they have jobs that are impacted by governments.

          Quick Fix:
          – their (belongs to them –> their future)
          – one family; many families (never use an apostrophe to make a noun plural)

          • Alison says:

            14 year old’s must vote.

            14 year old’s must vote, because around this age they are getting jobs. Their becoming their own person. These people are leaving here, they are going to make this world their future. They will become adults and have there own families. Their families will be rised here.

            It’s their world, and it’s there future, they should have a right to vote

            • Mr. Bell says:

              Work off your BIG IDEA about getting jobs. What are the connections to support this important argument. For example, governments set the minimum wage (which is what most kids earn in their first job).

  34. Jacob says:

    I think the government should allow people of 14 years pf age to vote because it will make a difference in elections.

    • Jacob says:

      First, lowering the voter age to 14 would improve voter turnout by a landslide, second, some 14-17 year old people are paying income tax to the government but they can’t make a vote for their favourite party and third, it would show the older people that youth have just as much right as them.

      • Mr. Bell says:

        Remember you want at least three supporting details (therefore three sentences in this activity). Combine this with your opening sentence and re-post.

        • Jacob says:

          The government must allow people of 14 years of age to vote because it will make a difference in elections.
          First, lowering the voting age to 14 would improve voter turnout by a landslide.
          Second, some 14-17 year old people are paying income tax to the government they didn’t even vote for.
          Finally, it would show the older people just how capable younger people really are.

          • Mr. Bell says:

            Nicely done Jacob, now turn it into a paragraph by attaching the sentences on the lines. There is no need to press enter at the end of each sentence. Simply leave a space after the period and begin the next sentence.

            • Jacob says:

              The government must allow people of 14 years of age to vote because it will make a difference in elections.First, lowering the voting age to 14 would improve voter turnout by a landslide.Second, some 14-17 year old people are paying income tax to the government they didn’t even vote for.
              Finally,it would show the older people just how capable younger people really are.

  35. marrie says:

    The voting age must be lowered to 14, because our society trusts young people with many other big responsibilities, so we should really trust them to vote for the leader of our country.

  36. Noah says:

    All voting should be done online because, it would save money from driving there and back.

    😀

  37. Colby says:

    I think that the voting age should be reduced to 14 because that would make a lot more people vote, and most 18 year olds have better things to like skateboarding, playing video games, texting, there job, etc. instead of waiting around in a voting building. 14 year olds don’t have as much to do and would like to vote.

  38. alyssa says:

    The voter’s must not go to jail for not voting because some don’t want to vote.

  39. ( Chris says:

    The voting age will be lowered to 14 is a horrible idea because some younger people are not amateur to vote.I think all the voter ages will be 20-

  40. Kyle says:

    I think that 14 year old’s should not be voting because they might not understand. I think they should put the voting age to 16 because they know how to drive and they would probable understand what to do.

    • Mr. Bell says:

      Elaborate your BIG IDEA to include what is not being understood (at 14, kids do not understand the issues…). From there, add more sentences to persuade your readers. What other responsibilities do 16 year old people have?

  41. cail says:

    this is outrageous because is stupid because y do we haif to go too jail.

  42. (Copter) says:

    Voting now should be done online! It is more convenient and cheap. Nobody wants to get in their car 2:00 in the morning and drive to the voting station, when they can just go on their laptop and vote. You know what I mean?

    • Mr. Bell says:

      You are on track Copter. Going forward, use transition phrases to improve the flow of your writing:

      Voting should be done online because it is convenient and cheap. First of all, nobody…Secondly,____…Finally,___.

      By the way, the voting stations are not open at 02:00!

  43. Chris says:

    The voting age will be lowered to 14 is a horrible idea because some younger people are not amateur to vote they and they always change there mind .I think all the voter ages will be 25-30 so they can vote the right prime minister.

    >,<

  44. liesl says:

    Eligible voters who do not cast a ballot should not be thrown in prison or fined, it’s a democratic right that all people should have choice and say in. First of all, forcing citizens to vote with the threat of punishment will draw in votes that have no thought or care in them, this will negatively disrupt the voting system and results. Secondly, the results of the election could be dramatically affected if many thoughtless votes are being cast, this could potentially cause problems for Canada in the future if the party just won by those forced votes. Lastly, being forced to vote would conflict with our democratic society, we have a right to language, religion, voting and etc. so if our right of voting is taken away does that mean other things like freedom of speech and religion will be taken away too?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *