Our Government Our Election

Lesson 2.3: Opposition Parties

To understand the role that loyal opposition plays in Saskatchewan’s governance, the concepts of how opposition parties hold the government to account will be explored.

1. Briefly reconsider the role of a member of the legislature. Discussion points can include the countless hours they spend in the legislative chamber, in committee meetings, in meetings with various community and business groups, and meeting citizens in their constituencies. Then point out that a great deal of media coverage of politicians and almost all coverage of legislative proceedings focuses on the half-hour window of the day, known as Question Period.

2. Read Question Period – Debate or Spectacle?

  • Question Period has been called political theatre. Does the emphasis on political theatre help propel good performers into public office, regardless if they have good ideas? ?

3. View live or archived video of Question Period for the activity Considering Question Period. Transcripts are found in Hansard.

4. To illustrate that much of the work legislators do is tedious and rather non-acrimonious, share a brief clip of a legislative committee meeting, possibly one that links to a relevant current event.
• Would public debate be better-served if the media and the public paid more attention to legislative debates and committee meetings, and less attention to Question Period?

5. Students interested in learning and practising parliamentary procedure can check out Saskatchewan Youth Parliament.

6. Students interested in learning speech and debate skills can check out The Saskatchewan Elocution and Debate Association (SEDA).

Question Period - Debate or Spectacle


What is Revolution?