Thursday, January 23, 2014

Thursday Thinking - On a Scale of One to Ten . . .

Today I asked the kids to place themselves on a patriotic continuum between 1 (not very patriotic) and 10 (very patriotic).  They were to defend their responses.

Frankly, their answers surprised me.  And inspired me.  The majority of the kids believe they are very patriotic.  They have a lot of love for and trust in their country and her people.  Many recognized that our country has serious problems facing her, and most said that they should do more to help her.

The class then compiled a list of what "more to help her" looks like.  They had several suggestions; then they turned to Mosiah 29 in the Book of Mormon where King Mosiah establishes a republican form of government among a people formerly ruled by a monarch.  Mosiah lists what citizens of a republic must do if they wish for their society to thrive.  Here is the combined list from the students' and Mosiah's ideas:

  • learn the history of the country

so we know what works and what doesn't
so we know what the framers of the Constitution intended and it can be clearly interpreted
so we can appreciate what we have and what it took to get it and what it takes to keep it

  • build strong families

a nation is only as strong as her families
families and nations are successful when they are built on moral principles

  • stand up, stand tall, and be heard

using John Hancock as an example a student mentioned we must not be afraid to stand up for freedom and what makes and keeps a society free
be exemplary in conduct and attitude

  • everybody has a responsibility in a republican form of government because everyone is represented and expects something in return

be actively involved
serve on juries
register for the draft
pay taxes
be a watchdog
recognize that a republican government takes lots of effort by her people and requires patience

  • obey the laws

don't try and avoid consequences
citizens must pay for their crimes and be accountable for their decisions

  • recognize that everyone has an opportunity to pursue happiness which is what gives equality to all

  • be wise

pay attention
be informed

I came away buoyed by the discussion.  In a day when cynics are loud, debt is huge, unity is splintered, and problems are mounting, I saw enthusiasm and conviction . . . and answers.

It was a great thing to think on all day.


Anonymous said...

Thanks, Jane for your inspiration! Wish I could be a student in your class. Naughtyia Peters came into 4th hour and had taken such detailed notes on the cake parable that she inspired all of us! Must make a note of that object lesson!

Jill said...

What a great lesson and inspiring message for them to leave class with!