French lesson plan for the 2022 French Presidential Election

French lesson plan for the 2022 Presidential election

Are you looking for a French lesson plan to teach about the 2022 French Presidential Election? Frenchified has you covered!

The 2022 French presidential election will be taking place in April 2022. The first round will be on April 10, and the second round on April 24. It is expected that this year’s match-up in the second round will be a repeat of the 2017 election, with Emmanuel Macron facing Marine LePen.

Since the French presidential voting system is quite different from the American and Canadian systems, this can make an interesting lesson for French classes, particularly at the more advanced levels. Even lower levels can make cultural comparisons between the methods as well as the candidates.

What are some of the differences in the systems?

The most obvious difference is the two-round system. While it’s possible for a candidate to get a majority of the vote in the first round (thus avoiding a second round altogether), it is highly unlikely and has never happened before. This is due to the number of candidates on the ballot – this year there will be 12! It would be quite surprising to see any one of the candidates get 50% of the vote, and it doesn’t look like this will happen this time either.

You can also discuss how candidates get onto the ballot – while the two-party system may be a fact of life in some countries, France has many more parties and the requirements to get on the ballot mean that there will be more candidates meeting the threshold. A candidate must collect 500 signatures from currently elected officials from at least 30 different departments in France in order to be put on the ballot.

Limitations on candidates

Another issue that students might find interesting is that there are strict limits to the amount of money a candidate can spend on a campaign, and there are no television ads for the candidates. This will probably be shocking, as I know that attack ads are a constant during election season! Attack ads also don’t make as much sense in France, as you don’t know which candidate you will face in the second round – and you can’t really focus on attacking 11 different candidates, can you – it’s just not efficient! This means that candidates can instead talk about their plans and why you should vote for them, rather than why you shouldn’t vote for the other guy!

The “black-out” period before the election is also a huge difference – for 44 hours before the polls open, the media does not report on the election. No interviews with candidates, no last-minute surprises, even the candidates are silent – no tweets, no speeches, no rallies. After having lived through too many crazy American election cycles, the idea of a couple of days of silence seem very attractive.

How do French people vote?

2022 French Presidential election

The “ballots” are quite different as well. Rather than a long paper ballot with a variety of offices and propositions, French people vote using a system of envelopes and papers. There is only one office or issue at a time – so on April 10, voters will be casting a vote for president – nothing else! The voter takes an envelope and pieces of paper with candidates’ names on them into the voting booth, then places the paper with the candidate of their choice in the envelope. They then place the sealed envelope in the plexiglass box.

Votes are counted at the end of the day – by hand! There are no voting machines, no electronic vote counting. Elections are always held on Sundays so that most people will have the day off and be able to vote.

French lesson plan for teaching about the 2022 French presidential election

If you are looking for ways to teach about the election, I have recently added to the Frenchified store this French lesson plan for the 2022 French Presidential election. It includes a reading in intermediate French about the election, information about 5 of the candidates’ platforms, comprehension questions in both French and English, an answer key and related resources. It is available in both print and digital versions, plus a print + digital bundle. You can find it in the Frenchified store on TPT as well as here at frenchified.com.

If you would like to have a nice discussion about some of the issues and where the candidates stand, I would recommend reading some of the recent posts on the Hugo Decrypte Instagram feed. He’s made several posts focusing on issues and how each candidate in the 2022 French presidential election feels about the issue. He also frequently does polls where readers can cast a vote on an issue, comment, and share their ideas.

This would be a great resource for beginners and intermediate students (the name of the issue and the choice of pour/contre/NSP are pretty easy to understand) and can also lead to some discussion of the nuances of the positions for more advanced classes.

French lesson plan for the 2022 French Presidential Election
French lesson plan for the 2022 French Presidential Election
French lesson plan for the 2022 French Presidential Election

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