Teaching Students About the EU Elections

The European Union (EU) elections are an essential component of the democratic process in Europe, ensuring that citizens have a voice in shaping the policies and decision-making of the EU. For educators, teaching students about EU elections is a crucial aspect of instilling informed citizenship and fostering a sound understanding of modern politics. This article will discuss the importance of teaching students about EU elections, outline some helpful resources, and suggest effective strategies to engage students in the learning process.

1. The Importance of Teaching EU Elections

Education plays a central role in promoting democratic values and civic participation. Teaching students about EU elections gives them an opportunity to develop critical thinking skills, as well as expand their knowledge on:

– The structure and functioning of the European Union

– The responsibilities of Members of the European Parliament (MEPs)

– The role of European political parties

– The electoral process and its significance for shaping policies implemented across EU member states

By understanding these key aspects, students can engage in informed discussions about relevant political issues and make well-founded decisions regarding their own voting choices.

2. Helpful Resources for Teaching About EU Elections

A wide range of resources are available to help educators teach students about EU elections, including:

– The official European Parliament website (https://www.europarl.europa.eu), which contains comprehensive information on the institution’s structure and workings, as well as an overview of MEPs and political groups

– The European Parliamentary Research Service’s (EPRS) publications (https://www.europarl.europa.eu/thinktank/en/home.html), which provide detailed insights into various policy areas and legislative initiatives

– EuroparlTV (https://multimedia.europarl.europa.eu/en/home), which offers videos that explain the role of the European Parliament and showcase its activities

– Interactive games such as ‘The Euros’ (https://www.theeuros.eu/en/) and ‘Parlamentarium’ (https://www.europarl.europa.eu/visiting/en/parlamentarium.html) that educate users about the EU, its institutions, and its policies

3. Effective Strategies for Teaching EU Elections

To fully engage students in learning about EU elections, educators should consider implementing a variety of teaching strategies that cater to different learning styles and interests:

– Start with the basics: Offer a general overview of the European Union, its history, and structure. Emphasize the significance of EU elections in shaping the Union’s policies and legislation.

– Use multimedia tools: Incorporate video presentations, games, or even virtual tours to illustrate information visually and make it more relatable to students.

– Foster group discussions: Hold debates, mock election sessions or role-playing activities that encourage students to express their opinions on relevant political topics.

– Bring in experts: Invite guest speakers such as MEPs or political scientists to share their insights and experiences with the class.

– Encourage independent research: Have students analyze different political parties’ manifestos or profiles of MEP candidates with resources like    Votewatch Europe (https://www.votewatch.eu).


Teaching students about EU elections is an essential aspect of fostering informed citizenship and promoting democratic values. By equipping them with a deep understanding of the European Union’s electoral process and decision-making mechanisms, educators can inspire future generations to actively participate in shaping Europe’s future.

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