Catholic Homeschool Articles, Advice & Resources

Ask the Experts: How do you Raise Good Citizens who Know Their Rights and Responsibilities?


Homeschooling experts offer practical methods to prepare our children to know their rights and responsibilities and be good citizens.

Include Them in Activities…


Personally, engaging my state representatives felt intimidating once upon a time. Then, I was asked to participate in several petitions and rallies related to homeschooling, home birth, and pro-life legislation.

Those experiences helped me better understand my part in being an active citizen. With that understanding, I started bringing my children to peaceful events. I encouraged them to walk into our state representative’s offices and speak with them about the proposed legislation.

My children and I have had many lively conversations about moral issues, rights, and responsibilities. We all learn to think critically, consider different perspectives, and defend our positions. In a time when public discourse deteriorates quickly, it’s important to hone the virtue of charity and the skills of good communication, and that is best exercised first in the home.

Most of my earlier reluctance to actively engage in the work of being a good citizen was based on my lack of experience. I didn’t grow up seeing adults participate in politics or even local causes, so I felt unsure of myself. Therefore, I’ve focused on preparing my children to be good citizens by including them in my activities and encouraging them to discuss hard topics.

Tara Brelinsky, North Carolina

Duties, Rights, and Responsibilities…


My kids have grown up watching my husband and I discuss issues, debate policies, and vote. We took them in the stroller so they could see what was happening. Their favorite part was the sticker.

With their Trail Life and American Heritage Girls badge work, reading the Constitution, Declaration of Independence, and Magna Carta are all a must. From an early age, we stress the duties, rights, and responsibilities of citizenship.

When deciding whom to vote for, it is important to discuss whether their policies align with Church teachings. We discuss elections, party platforms, laws, justice, virtue, and how it fits with Catholic social teaching. I am so glad the U.S. government course is required for Seton students and that they can study what they have heard about for so long.

One item on my bucket list is to take my family to a naturalization ceremony and watch the moment people have worked for and dreamed about for so long become a reality.

Kristin Brown, Virginia

Start Them at a Young Age…

Preparing our children to be good citizens starts at a young age. We teach our little children to share, take turns, speak the truth, and obey Mom and Dad.

As they enter school, they learn the Ten Commandments. Here, the Seton curriculum has been indispensable in its thorough explanations. I have often heard my kids discussing the Ten Commandments with each other.

Learning the Ten Commandments helps to form our children’s consciences so they can make good choices in how they relate to others. Discussions with them about friendships and relationships can always be based on those commandments.

All my children have been active in some way with our parish and tithe as they are able to earn money. That lets them know that they are part of a bigger community and to serve and help others.

As my children have become adults, I have heard from their employers about how hardworking they are and what good team members they are. These comments let me know that they have learned what they have been taught at home.

My husband has stepped up to teach them about their rights as citizens. His wisdom and logic have helped our kids understand their rights and responsibilities as Americans.

Susan Brock, Virginia

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