A Little Election – politics in a storybook for kids

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Does the 2013 Federal Election seem like a distant memory? Relive the excitement of polling day with a favourite from newspaper columnist and author, Danny Katz.

A Little Election, written by Danny Katz and illustrated by Mitch Vane, brings politics to the playground with the story of Rory, a kid who decides to become Prime Minister.

Rory figures that if he’s Prime Minister he can do anything he wants – including licking Melanie Applebum on the face and showing the whole class his undies. Rory’s teacher intervenes and explains to him that “The Prime Minister doesn’t do naughty things. The Prime Minister is supposed to keep everyone happy and safe” and further, that you can only be Prime Minister if elected by the people. (Hmmmm, in theory anyway!).

Classmate Debra-Jo Woo thinks she might also like to be Prime Minister and an election is called (Rory cops a cheese-stick in the eye amidst the excitement).

With electoral seats, political parties, policies (lolly bags for all and no more seven-times-tables), speeches and the media clamouring for a quote, Katz has the election process covered and Vane has it drawn, undies and cheese sticks included.

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There are many important aspects of elections, whether they be of the Federal or student representative type, that children should understand – notably that the process is not a popularity contest but about values and what people stand for. Go one step further and explain that in Australia we are lucky to have a democratic election process compared to some places where people don’t have a say in who makes the rules.

There are plenty of bums and boogers in this book. Along with the concept of elections, it’s best suited to children aged five years and over.

A Little Election by Danny Katz was first published in 2007 however it has been recently re-released by Walker books as a paperback. Find it online at Fishpond.

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Katrina Whelen

Katrina studied planning and design, did the hard yards working in a big office building and then traded it all in for a relaxing (!) life at home with four children. She now fills her time with writing, completing a degree in genetics and taxiing her children around Melbourne to their various sporting commitments (not necessarily in that order).

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