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Being a Responsible Citizen
Lesson Objective
The student will identify and list characteristics of responsible citizens using Clara Barton as an example.The student will share ways
they can demonstrate responsible citizenship in their neighborhood, school, state, nation, and world (this lesson is divided into 2
separate lessons).
Background Information for Teacher
Words in bold are said aloud by the teacher.
Student Prior Knowledge
blank papers
Clara Barton worksheet
Responsible citizen poster
Posterboard, or construction paper
Step-by-Step Guided Lesson
Step 1: Start Video
(Tips: Interact with the video by pausing, to ask questions or discuss information viewed with student.)
Step 2: Teach Lesson
Day 1
Tell the student, today we will be learning about being a responsible citizen.
Ask the student to describe the qualities of a friend they would like to have. Have the student brainstorm the qualities of a friend, and
discuss why they are desirable qualities.
Ask the student, what does it mean to be a responsible citizen? Allow the student time to respond. Define citizen using the
Responsible Citizen poster (
A person who belongs to a community
and define responsible. Explain that responsible citizens help
to make their community a good place to live for everyone.
Read and complete the Clara Barton Storyboard Activity.
Finish the lesson by teaching the student this short song (adapt the words to any rhythm).
We are good citizens, You know it’s true.
We are good citizens in all we do.
We work hard and respect every rule,
Helping the community and our school.
We listen, share and always care,
We show good citizenship everywhere!
Day 2
Ask the student, Do you remember the song we learned yesterday? (Repeat the song 2-3 times)
Tell the student, Today we will continue to discuss the importance of being a good responsible citizen and the roles we all
Emphasize to the student the importance of individual roles and responsibilities of a good citizen. Have the student brainstorm and
list on a chart paper the duties of a second grader.
Show a handful of paper cutouts, explaining that they represent these roles. Throw the papers out onto the floor. Discuss how long it
would take if just one person had to pick up all the pieces versus a group working together.
Have the student pick up the papers from the floor alone while you time it. The second time around, help the student pick up the
papers from the floor and compare the time difference.
Relate this to the jobs discussion and good citizenship. Explain to the student that not doing our job makes it hard on others. We
need to work together. Working together saves time.
Discuss and define the various communities to which the student belongs. (Neighborhood, school, state, nation, and world)
Pick one of the communities listed above. The student will be the scribe. They will generate ideas of how they can be good citizens in
their communities.
Have the student draw, and write down their ideas on a posterboard, or construction paper. The student will present their ideas to the
teacher for display. Discuss with the student what their ideas are and how these ideas can help the communities.
Step 3: Complete the worksheet attached below.
Worksheets needed to complete the lesson
Step 4: Review. Start the next lesson with the game or activity attached below for review so the student can demonstrate
understanding of this lesson before moving forward.
The Book of Virtues: Responsibility (online) movie
Citizen Ants (offline) activity
Chocolate graham cracker crumbs
Chocolate cake sprinkles
zip-lock baggies
plastic spoons.
Tell the student, Cooperating and helping one another in order to get something done is a great way to learn about
citizenship. Did you know that even the tiniest creatures cooperate with one another? Ants work together to build colonies,
gather food, build tunnels, and care for their young. Every ant takes responsibility to perform its special job in order to
create a nice ant community to live in.
You can divide the responsibilities as shown below, or if you have less students to work with assign more than one thing to a student.
The teacher can help in the work to show that everyone plays an important role.
#1 is responsible for dumping graham cracker crumbs into a large bowl.
#2 fills sandwich bags half full with crumbs.
#3 adds a small spoonful of chocolate cake sprinkles "ants" into each bag.
#4 zips-up the bags.

Any remaining students can be responsible for passing out the finished bags and plastic spoons. Conclude your activity by reminding
the students that even ants know the importance of citizenship. When we take responsibility to do our part and care for our
community, we can make it great!