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citizen can learn for himself about the real need behind these plans. He can then talk them over with other taxpayers and with public officials in his neighborhood. Good public officials should always be glad to discuss such matters with citizens.


We see that good citizenship begins in the community group, where the citizen knows the community's needs and takes part in the everyday life of the community. The national group cannot be democratic (which means that it cannot give all the people their fair share in the government) if the community groups are not democratic.

Every citizen can also help the community very much by his everyday behavior, such as careful driving, helping to keep parks and neighborhoods clean, and having a neat and clean home. He can do his daily work earnestly and respect his neighbors' rights. Even boys and girls are aiding the police in large cities by helping younger children to cross busy streets safely on their way to school. Parents, in their homes, have one of the greatest obligations of good citizenship in training their children to become helpful citizens. No wonder we say that the best citizen is the one who has learned to be a good member of his home, his school, his club, his neighborhood, and his community.

In conclusion, we can say that our citizenship is a privilege given to some of us at birth, but gained by others through naturalization. It puts upon each citizen the obligation to work as faithfully as he can for the good of the whole national group.


Questions to discuss in your study group:

1. In our country does the vote of a rich citizen count for more than the vote of a poor man? Why or why not?

OBLIGATIONS AS GROUP MEMBERS Discuss in your class the obligation which a person owes to every group of which he is a member. After the discussion, complete the following chart as best you can:

Obligations which a person owes to his FAMILY: 1.


Obligations which a person owes to the SCHOOL group:



Obligations which a person owes to his CHURCH: 1.


Obligations which a person owes to his WORK: 1.


Obligations which a person owes to his NEIGHBORHOOD or




Obligations which a person owes to his COUNTY or CITY: 1.

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Obligations which a person owes to his COUNTRY: 1.


Figure 9

Work Project: Obligations as Group Members

2. Do the everyday activities of a person tell us whether he is a good citizen? Why?

3. Name some of the things in your community in which you think every citizen should be interested.

4. Select one of the groups to which you belong which has at least 10 members. How was it formed? What was its purpose ? How did you become a member? What is your own part in the group?

Suggested field trips:

Are there any new improvements being made in your community? Any more parks? Public buildings ? Roads ? Bridges? If so, elect a committee from your group

to visit each of them. Ask the committee to report to your group and tell how each new project will help the community.

Some more words which the student should understand:

admission-permission to enter into or join.
advantages—things which are helpful.
articles—particular things.
corporations-groups of people who join in business, each group

with legal permission to act as one person.
dependentrelying upon others for support.
enforcing-using authority, or even force, to put a law or rule

into effect. expenses—cost of things. experience—that which has been learned by having tried a thing. good willwillingness to live or work together well. improve—increase in value or quality. inconvenience-discomfort; something which gives a person

trouble. inspected-looked at carefully. inspection—careful study or inquiry made by actually looking

at the thing examined. insurance-protection against loss. jurya group of citizens who are chosen to listen to trials in

a court and to decide which side is right.

landlord-an owner who rents his land or buildings to someone

else. libraries—buildings or rooms where books are kept to be read. local problems-neighborhood questions that need answering. merchant-a person whose business is to buy and sell things. . militiaan organization of soldiers who in peacetime have other

jobs, and drill and are trained only on a part-time basis. officers—persons given authority by a group to hold definite jobs

or "offices." officials-officers. privilege-a special advantage which we should prize. regulation-rule to limit or direct action (usually government

action). self-sacrificema giving up by a person of things he needs, usually

in order to help other persons. sheriff--a law-enforcing officer of a county. voluntary-according to one's free will. vote-express one's choice between men or plans by indicating

"yes" or "no.” welfare-good living conditions.


How the American Colonists Defended Their Freedom

and Started a New Nation

"Independence now and Independence forever.”

-Daniel Webster.


In chapters 3 and 4 we learned that certain basic factors will be found in almost all the groups which last. We must soon go forward to study these basic factors as they are found in the many different kinds of government groups in this country. Before we can do this, however, we shall need to know something of how our government groups were started. We already know that our form of government is built upon our National Constitution. In this chapter let us go back to the days of the earliest settlers and learn how they kept their freedom and established an independent nation.


Our Nation is now a Republic made up of 48 States, the District of Columbia, and outlying Territories. It has grown from 13 States to its present size. Before the people of the 13 States organized themselves into a new Nation they had lived in separate groups of communities, called Colonies, which were ruled by the King of England.

Most of the early American Colonies had been settled by groups of persons who had some special objective. The Virginia Colony, for example, was settled by an English “company”—a group of Englishmen who tried to make their fortunes by taking the lumber, tobacco, indigo, and other agricultural products of the new country back to Europe and selling them for a profit. Naturally agriculture was the chief business of the settlers.

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