PBS KIDS GO!
Learning Adventures in Citizenship
Episode 1Topic 4: Conquest & Revolution
You Make The Rules
Most of the time, it seems like other people make all the decisions about what you can and can't do. "You can't drive until you're 16," "You must finish your homework before you can watch TV," and so on. In this Learning Adventure, you'll get to form a new club where...YOU make the rules.
A Club Is Born
1
Your teacher will help divide up your class into random groups of about 4 or 5 kids. Close friends should be in different groups.
Common Cause
2
Together, decide what unites your club. Ask yourselves: What activity or topic do we all enjoy? Is there some cause we all support? To help you brainstorm, each of you may discuss what you like to do in your free time. Make a list of some possibilities, then take a vote.

Here are some possible clubs to consider. Remember, any club idea is okay as long as all the members are interested (and your teacher approves it).

Computer games
Raise money for charity
Enjoy a popular movie or TV show together
Volunteer to help less fortunate people in your community
Photography
Perform or listen to music
Take polls of student opinions, publish results
Support school sports teams
Stand up for students' rights at your school
Fieldtrips to museums
Create a special newspaper
Celebrity fan club
Name Your Club
3
Pick a catchy name for your club.
design a logo
4
Create a symbol or seal for your club. This logo would appear next to the name of your club on letters you write, your charter (see below), posters for your club, petitions, T-shirts, etc.
Create a Charter
5
A charter is a written document that tells the goals of your club and what the rules are. In your charter, you should include:

  • A mission statement (in 1-2 sentences, tell your main goal)

  • How often will your club meet?

  • Where will your club meet?

  • How will you make decisions? How will you settle disagreements?

  • What do members have to do in order to stay in the club?

  • Are there any actions that could get someone thrown out of your club?

  • Does your club have any officers?
When you're done, write up your charter and have everyone in the club sign it at the bottom. For some examples of charters or membership policies for organizations, check out the following Web sites:

U.S. Constitution Online
http://www.usconstitution.net/const.html

Women's Foreign Policy Group
http://www.wfpg.org

Audubon Society of New Hampshire
http://www.nhaudubon.org/

Sports Car Club of America (SCCA)
http://www.scca.org/whatis.html

Pittwater Tigers Junior AFL Club
http://www.qmtech.com/tigers/1999/frame/clubframe.htm

Capital District Network User's Group -- Membership Info
http://www.cdnug.org/Members.htm