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Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Kids VT Launches Good Citizen Coronavirus Challenge

Posted By on Wed, Apr 8, 2020 at 12:04 PM

click to enlarge Ethan B. recruiting volunteers for the town of Clarendon.
  • Ethan B. recruiting volunteers for the town of Clarendon.
You know what the world needs more of in these challenging times? It needs honest, hard-working, reliable people who pay attention to public health information, treat each other with kindness and respect, and pitch in to help out when they can. Here at Kids VT, we call them Good Citizens.
In 2018, to train more of them, we created the Good Citizen Challenge, with support from the Vermont Community Foundation. The Challenge encourages Vermont students to learn about history, government, news literacy, advocacy and community engagement.

click to enlarge Tatum K. holding her poster encouraging adults to vote.
  • Tatum K. holding her poster encouraging adults to vote.
We wrapped up our second Challenge on March 6. Burlington-based GameTheory built the system to run it, funded by Dan and Jenna Sonneborn, and the Evslin Family Foundation. Nearly 850 players from 78 towns registered to play; 215 of them finished the Challenge. We were so impressed with all of their hard work!

Since then, our lives have been upended by the COVID-19 pandemic. Many businesses have shuttered. All of our schools are closed. For the next 10 weeks, Vermont students are learning at home.

click to enlarge Keyleigh W.'s thank you card to the Broad Brook Grange.
  • Keyleigh W.'s thank you card to the Broad Brook Grange.
To help them — and their parents and caregivers — we're  launching a weekly Good Citizen Coronavirus Challenge that will last until mid-June, the end of the school year. We'll post a few new activities each week at goodcitizenvt.com. These will focus on subject areas including history (how people got through tough times in the past), news literacy (how to evaluate online information) and community engagement (how we can help our friends, neighbors and loved ones weather this storm).

Each week, we'll recognize outstanding work and raffle off a prize. All K-12 students who send in submissions will be entered. We think this will be both educational and fun. Here's hoping it helps all of us become better citizens this year.

Find more details, along with this week's activities, at goodcitizenvt.com.

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