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Civics 101: Community and citizenship with PBS KIDS

March 14, 2024 Tawny Morrison Leave a Comment

Civics teaches kids about their rights and responsibilities as citizens. From public library services to presidential elections, it can be hard for parents and caregivers to know where to start. PBS KIDS is here to help with games, videos and activities to spark interest and excitement about the ways kids can engage in civics, even at an early age.

Who are the people in your neighborhood?

The PBS KIDS series City Island takes place in a city where every object comes to life! Join Watt the lightbulb and his friends as they learn about civics from different members of the community who help make the city run. From learning how the mail gets sorted to understanding why rules at the skate park are important, it’s a great way to introduce children to the benefits of community.

Kids can learn about being a community helper by playing the Rosie’s Rules digital game, Riding with Rosie! Players join Rosie as she helps guide the recycling truck around town, waters the community garden and more.

Riding with Rosie is available in English and Spanish online and on the PBS KIDS Games app.

Get out the vote with Arthur and friends

Voting is one way grown-ups make their voices heard on important issues and decisions. In this clip from Arthur, Binky and Buster feel frustrated after learning they won’t be able to vote until they’re older. Then, they discover they can get involved by encouraging the grown-ups in their community to vote!

For kids eager to cast their ballots, host an election at home! Invite your family to vote for their favorite fruit with the “I Voted” activity available in the “Let’s Vote Bingo” media collection on PBS LearningMedia. Print your ballots or make your own. After everyone has voted, your child can count the votes and reveal the results! This activity is available in English and Spanish.

For more ways to spark curiosity about civics and community, check out “9 Picture Books about Voting and Elections” or watch the Meet the Helpers video series on the PBS KIDS for Parents website.

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