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Being a Good Citizen

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

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The mid-term elections were a perfect occasion to teach our children about the importance of good citizenship. By grades 4 and 5, children are learning about the Constitution and the history of voting rights in America. Many classrooms had their own mock elections in order to provide students with time to investigate each candidate's platform in order to make a decision based on their individual set of values. The fact that you may not agree with an entire platform makes decisions more difficult -- an important lesson for any decision-making process. It is also a great opportunity to stress respecting others' opinions, no matter how much they conflict with yours!

A natural extension of discussions about voting is what it takes to be a good citizen. To me, good citizens are people who put others' needs ahead of their own. They make decisions based on what will benefit the entire community. It is a broad perspective rather than a narrow one. Being a good citizen is being responsible and respectful.

Sound familiar? Its should! "Don't Be That KID! At School" and "Don't Be That KID! At Home" are about assisting children to learn good citizenship skills. Each scene depicts a different important character trait, such as honesty, consideration, responsibility, kindness and respect. My favorite scenes in both books are the ones dealing with self-reflection: "What kind of a KID do you want to be?" "What do you need to do to get there?"

The "Don't Be That KID! At School Resource Guide" is filled with meaningful activities to help teachers and engaged parents to motivate their children to want to exhibit good citizen traits. Respectful children become responsible adults!

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