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Students Learn First Hand about the NC House of Representatives

Representative Craig Horn explains the procedure of a bill being considered for legislation.

Representative Craig Horn, a member of the North Carolina House of Representatives, spent Friday morning with Mrs. Bittner’s fifth grade students at Western Union Elementary School. He explained how the processes and procedures work when a legislative bill is being considered. Representative Horn role-played being the Speaker of the House while the students’ role-played being members in the House of Representatives. Students proposed changes they wanted to see in Union County schools.

Topics included allowing soda and snack machines for students to use, permitting students to use cell phones throughout the day for apps and internet, enabling students to use technology on the bus, having students in third grade and higher go on field trips out of the country, and growing school gardens to provide fruits and vegetables for the school cafeteria.

The students asked questions of the student ‘House of Representative’ member who proposed the bill. The proposals were then debated. While Representative Horn played the ‘Speaker of the House’, the students had to follow proper procedures as if they were true members of the North Carolina House of Representatives.

Students soon realized that they had to wait for the Speaker of the House to give them permission to speak, whether proposing the bill, asking questions, or debating the bill. Also, the students learned that they could deny a request to answer a question if it was a question they did not want to answer.

Once the ‘Speaker of the House’ closed the debate, the ‘House of Representatives’ voted on the bill. Students soon realized how tedious the process is.

Written by: Mrs. J Bittner
Posted: Mar 21, 2011 by Carrie Johnson

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