Citizenship Education: Goals & Importance

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  • 0:04 What Is Citizenship Education?
  • 0:28 Civic Learning & Citizenship
  • 1:53 Citizenship Theory
  • 3:05 The Goal of Democracy
  • 3:56 Service Learning &…
  • 5:36 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Cirrelia Thaxton

Cirrelia is an educator who has taught K-12 and has a doctorate in education.

Explore the goals and importance of citizenship education from both theoretical and practical perspectives. In so doing, you will learn fundamentals of service learning and developmental factors of 21st Century skills.

What Is Citizenship Education?

To be good citizens, people should study and learn a few key concepts. First, they should understand why citizenship is so important in making our democracies work. Then they need to understand the goals of citizenship and the importance of meeting those goals through hard work and dedication. By knowing and applying all these goals, citizens benefit not only themselves but also their communities.

Civic Learning & Citizenship

To have a fulfilling education, it's important to develop the skills, values, and knowledge for active and concerned citizenship. Teaching students about citizenship requires civic learning that involves interaction, relevance, participation, and collaboration in the classroom. In order to educate their students, teachers should focus on lessons involving problem-solving, leadership, communication, and persuasive writing. The key is to educate students about what an informed citizenry is and how to be a part of it, rather than just instructing basic subjects, like math, English, and science.

Because education is so important to citizenry, some countries, like England, find that there should be a National Curriculum devoted to citizenship education. The basis for this curriculum is to train students to make decisions while assuming responsibility for their lives and communities. As a result of this teaching philosophy, civic learners are able to build self-confidence, develop their own public voice, and make positive contributions to society.

Employing a knowledge model, citizenship education is defined as the education of young learners for growth as informed citizens who participate in decisions about society. Students learn knowledge of their nation's institutions and rules of law as they apply to social and human relationships. Overall, citizenship education trains good citizens and requires them to exhibit ethical and moral characteristics.

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