Pathfinder Citizenship Evening

Linda Pullen
Pictou Area Camp and International Adviser
Pictou Area, NS

I finally did the Citizenship challenges meeting with the Pathfinders, after delays for snowstorms and exams. It went very well although we didn't quite get time to do all I'd planned.

We started off sort of brainstorming - who is a Canadian citizen, why are you (all born here), why is it a good thing to be, leading into rights and responsibilities.

Then I explained that though I wasn't born here, I was able to become a citizen and explained the process to them.

Enough talking - we then did a self-testing game about Citizenship. On one side of the board are 11 questions on how to become a citizen. Then you have small cards with answers on one side and letters of the alphabet on the other - a few extra wrong answers are thrown in so it's not too easy. If they get all the questions right, when they flip the cards over it spells 'citizenship'.

The next activity was skits. Each girl was given a card with details of various characters applying for citizenship. In turns, one girl acted as citizenship court judge asking appropriate questions to determine if they would be allowed to become citizens. The girls really got into this (especially 'Pierre' with his French accent and moustache!) Then the whole group would decide yes or no.

At this point we had a mini mock Citizenship court and stood to make the pledge of allegiance.

After that we moved on to discuss symbols - what are some of the Canadian symbols and where do you see them? With more time, a good activity here would be to make your own coat-of-arms and motto. Or to make a Canadian hat craft.

Then we played a Concentration game matching up Provincial flowers and Provincial flags. I made a set of cards of flower, flag, coat-of-arms, map and name for each Province so that various games can be played. It could also be done as an active relay.

I got a great package of information from the Department of Citizenship (I think - it was a long time ago) with pages of information about Canada and each Province. They also sent me lots of booklets to give to the girls. We finished up the evening with sort of a Jeopardy game (questions and answers - not the other way round - I have difficulty thinking that way!) The categories were Citizenship, General Knowledge of Canada, Provincial emblems and flowers, Government and Famous Canadians. We didn't have time to finish this but just enough to give them an idea.

I also gave them mini flags, lapel pins and 'Take it to heart' stickers - I wasn't sure if they were as into collecting stuff as Guides but they seemed to enjoy it.

I quite enjoyed presenting this and plan to offer it to the other Pathfinder group in our Area. Now that I'm not with a unit this year I have more time to work on these theme things. My next big project is an Area International day for Guides.

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