April Character Trait: Citizenship

April 06, 2016

What is Citizenship?

Citizenship is the status of being a citizen. If you have citizenship in a country, you have the right to live there, work, vote, and pay taxes. The word Citizenship comes from the Latin word for city, because in the earlier days of human governments, people identified themselves as belonging to cities more than countries. Citizenship is more than merely living somewhere; it includes the rights and duties of being a part of a community as well as the good choices/conduct that go along with being a citizen.

At Sullins, we are interested in helping our students be good scholars AND good citizens. That means that we want our students to come to school seeking to learn every day, which is what we have called the “Sullins Mindset” this year. But in addition to learning to read, write and do math well, we also want our students to learn how to be an EXCELLENT classmate, a KIND friend, and a CONTRIBUTING member of the Sullins community. Being a good citizen is also a part of the “Sullins Mindset” because we want to see how we can help other people every day.

Here are some ideas to practice good citizenship as a family:

Honor your Heritage:

  1. Discuss the meaning of national holidays.

  2. Learn about Tennessee and Virginia history.

  3. Ask your grandparents and parents what life was like when they were growing up.

Be Involved in the Democratic Process:

  1. Tell someone in authority when someone does something wrong.

  2. Read the news.

  3. Question things you don’t understand or that don’t make sense.

  4. Discuss issues facing the country with your family at the dinner table.

  5. Take your children with you when you vote.

Support the people who make our country strong:

  1. Help your teacher

  2. Wave to a policeman or firefighter and thank them for their service

  3. Write a thank-you letter to a veteran

Promote a Sense of Community

  1. Pick up a piece of trash each day.

  2. Recycle paper and glass products.

  3. Help in our community garden so we can grow food to donate to others.

Strengthen Your Family and Yourself

  1. Say please and thank you always and I’m sorry when you are.

  2. Don’t do something you think is wrong just because someone else wants you to or is doing it.

  3. Keep a journal of things you appreciate and are thankful for.

Over the month of April, we will be talking more about citizenship and I will be looking for examples of this in our Sullins community.  So talk about it with your teachers and advisors, talk about it with your friends… and most importantly, remember that you are an important member of Sullins Academy, Bristol, our state and our country, and as such, your citizenship will determine what kind of communities these will be.

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