The Civikids program is specifically designed for grades 2, 3, 4, and 5 to help develop an early understanding of how governments (local, state, federal) work through a series of activities and simulations. The program was developed in partnership with the Association of County Commissioners of Georgia.
Specifically, the Civikids program is designed to be scalable from a one-time a month meeting during a specials day or an after school club to a classroom resource upon which you build out lessons and units. The program is built on 9 meetings.
Generally speaking, the nine meetings are organized as follows:
Meeting 1 - Welcome, Program Introduction, Team Building Activities, and community service project planning
Meetings 2-7 - Grade targeted modules to teach students specific strands of the government standards. Some of the meetings include inviting local leaders into the school to share about a specific issue or to lead a conversation on a specific topic. These also include simulations of various government functions from city council/county commission meetings to model legislature to model congress to a mock election. Build on John Dewey's "learning by doing" methodology, we seek to teach students about the government by having them become the government.
Meeting 8 - Dedicated to the Community Service Project
Meeting 9 - Citizen's Academy Graduation
As noted above, each CiviKids Chapter is asked to plan, organize, and complete a community service project. Ideas for the service project can be found in the CiviKids program book or through the Center's website. The presence of a service learning in each of the grade level programs is to help instill the idea that citizenship is much more than voting or running for office. Rather, citizenship requires active participation through volunteering and other forms of service to the community. Further, it helps students develop an understanding of needs outside of themselves, which helps instill the character values of empathy, kindess, and service.
The CiviKids program is available to every public and private elemtary school in Georgia with an annual subscription. The subscription provides teachers with access to the program resources and professional staff support.