Your Voice, Your Choice: Have Your Say

The aim of this resource is to encourage students to have a say on the decisions that affect their lives now and in the future.  It is based on civics education, which promotes engagement and participation in the democratic process.  It focuses on promoting students' critical thinking and their knowledge of citizens' rights and responsibilities to contribute and participate in decision-making.

Curriculum Links

Social Sciences (Social Studies)

Conceptual strand:

Identity, Culture and Organisation

Students learn about society and communities and how they function.  They also learn about the diverse cultures and identities of people within those communities and about the effects on the participation of groups and individuals.

Level 3 (Years 5-6)

Students will gain knowledge, skills and experience to:

  • understand how groups make and implement rules and laws
  • understand how people make decisions about access to and use of resources.

Level 4 (Years 7-8)

Students will gain knowledge, skills and experience to:

  • understand how the ways in which leadership of groups is acquired and exercised have consequences for communities and societies
  • understand how formal and informal groups make decisions that impact communities
  • understand how people participate individually and collectively in response to community challenges.

Teaching Units

Teaching Units


Topic 1: Getting Started - who makes decisions? (PDF 395.16 KB)  
Topic 2: Is your voice heard? (PDF 401.51 KB)  
Topic 3: Rights and responsibilities (rules and laws) (PDF 40.49 KB)  
Topic 4: What is an election? (PDF 34.73 KB)  
Topic 5: New Zealand's system of government (PDF 40.91 KB)

Graphic Organiser A: KWL Chart (PDF 29.18 KB)

Graphic Organiser B: Concept Circle (PDF 20.99 KB)

Factsheet A: New Zealand's democratic system of government (PDF 41.88 KB)

Topic 6: Representatives of the people (PDF 35.38 KB)

Map of New Zealand's General electorates

Map of New Zealand's Māori electorates

Or, you may want to use an interactive map of New Zealand's electoral districts at

Graphic Organiser C: Retrieval Table - who can vote (PDF 27.16 KB)

Topic 7: Going to Wellington (after the election) (PDF 35.36 KB) Graphic Organiser D: explaining viewpoints survey (PDF 38.53 KB)
Topic 8: Taking Action (PDF 34.97 KB)  
Topic 9: Referenda (PDF 40.71 KB) Factsheet B: Referenda (PDF 107.46 KB)
Topic 10: Being part of decision-making (PDF 46.09 KB) Factsheet C: You can still have your say if you're not 18 (PDF 38.47 KB)
Topic 11: What do we do know? (PDF 40.66 KB) Graphic Organiser A: KWL Chart  (PDF 29.18 KB)(from Topic 5, Activity 1)



Last updated: 21 March 2014