Grade Levels: 3-5, 6-8

In this lesson plan, adaptable for grades 5-8, students play a game called Represent Me!, in which they take on the role of a legislator seeking re-election. They review and categorize legislation, approving bills they think will best help their constituents.  

Lesson Plan Common Core State Standards Alignments

Students will:

  1. Learn that a legislator’s job is to represent his or her constituents.
  2. Simulate a relationship between a legislator and a diverse constituency.
  3. Evaluate hypothetical legislation for impact on various socioeconomic groups.


  • Computers or other devices with Internet access
  • Interactive whiteboard


constituent, legislator, socioeconomic


This lesson plan features a game called Represent Me! developed by our partner,  iCivics. In this game, students take on the role of a legislator seeking re-election, reviewing and categorizing legislation and approving bills that best meet their constituents’ needs and interests.  

Review the Represent Me! Game Guide for step by step directions on how to play the game. Then, preview and play Represent Me! to plan how you will adapt it to your students’ needs. If students will be playing in small groups, review tips on Setting Cooperative Gaming Expectations.

For ideas on how to use SnapThought with this game and for specific prompts to provide students with during game play, see Represent Me: Additional Features for My BrainPOP.

Build background knowledge or reinforce topics with these BrainPOP movies: How a Bill Becomes a Law, Democracy, Political Beliefs, Primaries and Caucuses, Voting, Presidential Election, and Political Parties.

Lesson Procedure:

  1. Write the word “constituent” on the whiteboard. Ask students who they think constituents are, and then what they have to do with candidates running for office. Jot their ideas around the word. Then explain that constituents are the people represented by elected lawmakers, such as senators and congressmen and women. Remind students that senators run for election every 6 years, and representatives every 2 years.
  2. Now ask students what they think lawmakers looks for when deciding on bills to approve and pass. What role do they think constituents play in making those decisions. Add students’ responses to the brainstorming map on the whiteboard. Make sure they understand that lawmakers are elected to represent their constituents from their states, and that they consider laws that represent their constituents’ values.
  3. Show the BrainPOP movie How a Bill Becomes a Law on the whiteboard and watch as a class. After the movie, have students work in small groups to discuss what they think might influence a congressperson’s decision to sponsor a bill. After about 10 mins, come back together as a class and have the groups discuss their thoughts along with their reasoning.
  4. Now display the game Represent Me! on the whiteboard. Tell students that in this game, they will take on the role of a legislator, or lawmaker, and decide which bills to sponsor in congress based on the issues most important to the people they represent, or their constituents. Explain that the objective is to strategically support your constituents so that you are reelected to office.   
  5. Have students play the game individually or in pairs at their own computers for approximately 15-20 minutes. Circulate as students play, listening in to their discussions and decision-making, providing support as needed.
  6. If students have individual logins through My BrainPOP, encourage them to use the SnapThought® tool to take snapshots during gameplay. Review Represent Me!: Additional Features for My BrainPOP for suggested prompts.
  7. After students have played the game, come back together as a class to discuss their experience. You can use the following questions to prompt discussion:  
    • What was most difficult about choosing which bills to approve?
    • As a lawmaker, your personal opinions and concerns did not matter. In real life, do you think lawmakers opinions play a role in their decision making?
    • What do you think is most challenging about representing people?

Extension Activities:

Ask students to write a letter of their own to a lawmaker, either individually or together as a class. Students should choose an important issue, include at least three reasons why the lawmaker should care about the issue, and tell the lawmaker what action to take.