I was recently talking with some teens who are gifted, about world events and they expressed their desire to stir citizens to action after the school shooting in Florida. These teens were not talking about vague action or words, but rather, how they could encourage others to join them as they participate in our democratic system to change policies with which they disagree. While these teens had strong ideas about which of the current problems facing our world today that they wanted to become involved with, they were speaking with maturity about citizens’ participation in the democratic system, regardless of the problem one wishes to pursue. They learned their civics lessons and want to put them into action.
I asked what they would say to others, adults included, to encourage them to participate and take action. These teens said they want people to know that their voice matters, their vote matters, and their feelings matter. Regardless of which side of an issue people are on, these teens want to see others take action to voice their concerns and be heard, rather than accepting the status quo. These young adults are inspiring their peers and adults by their honest voice and call for everyone to be genuine and caring toward each other while taking action to make a better world. They inspire many by their maturity in the face of issues many adults have never had to face in school or home. The voice of gifted children, youth, and young adults is worth listening to, and is important to help them maneuver this complex world in which we all live.
Here are a few websites with information about civic action.
Making a Difference Through Civic Action, A Unit by Scholastic
Civic Action Project, Constitutional Rights Foundation
14 Examples of High Quality Civic Learning Opportunities
Ask the Doctor