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How Immigrants Feel About Obama's Election


The Chicago Tribune reports this morning about how many immigrants are celebrating Barack Obama's election. (Hat tip to ImmigrationProf Blog.)

Latinos, some of whom are immigrants and many of whom have immigrant parents, voted for Barack Obama over John McCain by a margin of two-to-one, according to a report released by the Pew Hispanic Center yesterday. Interestingly, the proportion of voters who are Latinos was exactly the same this election, 8 percent, as in 2004.

Remember all of those immigrant students who left school and poured into the streets in the spring of 2006 calling for comprehensive immigration reform? Surely many of them were paying attention to this election, and some of them would be old enough to vote.

I'm thinking that some of this interest of immigrant parents and children in the election may create teachable moments in your classrooms. Feel free to share here any examples of how English-language learners are responding to the election.


Mary Ann,

I've done a variety of election activities with my English Language Learner students. Interestingly, though, clearly the one that garnered the most interest was the one I did yesterday.

I showed a Time Magazine slideshow that was a collection of images from countries around the world showing people celebrating Barack Obama's election. My students were amazed that so many people outside the U.S. cared so much about our election results, and the subsequent class discussion of America's role in the world was fascinating.



Here is the slide show that Larry Ferlazzo used with his students.


-Mary Ann Zehr

While I had some African students that were definitely for Obama, many of my students preferred McCain. They were very interested in the election. It was hurtful and confusing to them to have other students, usually Americans, not other ESOL students, be unkind to them for not supporting Obama.

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