Youth Patriotism Awards
GOLD (Youth 11-18)
To earn the Youth Patriotism Award � Freedom GOLD Medal a youth must complete ALL of the following:
- What You Think
- Discuss with your counselor what FREEDOM means to you. Write a list of attributes that you believe describe FREEDOM.
- Talk to three other people (preferably members of your family) and ask them what FREEDOM means to them and list the attributes they provide. Compare their attributes and your attributes. Describe to your counselor how age and experience might affect how a person thinks about FREEDOM.
- List on a piece of paper the FREEDOMS that you think you have by living in the United States. For each freedom on the list, list a country or people that are without this freedom in the world.
- The Declaration of Independence
- In the Declaration of Independence it states that �All men are created equal.� Tell your counselor what this line meant in 1776 when it was written. Describe how it has changed and what it means to Americans now.
- The Declaration further calls out the right of �Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness�. Define for your counselor what each of these items means.
- Looking at the Declaration of Independence, discuss with your counselor the �grievances� that the colonist had against the King of England. Describe how these grievances led to the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.
- The Constitution of the United States
- What does �Freedom of Speech� mean to you? Does this mean that you can stand up and say anything you want at any time? Discuss this with your counselor.
- With your counselor, look at the remaining rights granted by the Bill of Rights. With your counselor�s help, choose two. Write down a description of what each of these Amendments means to you. After completing your written description, talk to at least five people, asking them what the chosen rights means to them. After talking with the five people discuss with your counselor how (if at all) your written description would be different.
- Visit a person of a different race, creed, or belief. Ask them about how they see freedom in the United States. Have them tell you of a time that they might have had to struggle to exercise their freedom or when they might have struggled to allow others to exercise a freedom.
- Attend a worship service. Discuss with your counselor how the Freedom of Religion is important to Americans.
- Write a speech that would have been given in 1776 to describe the need of freedom and the vision of the United States. Give this speech to a small group of people (family is acceptable).
In addition to the above Requirements, you must also complete some electives. These electives can come from any of the below. Electives from the following list only count once (even if you complete an elective multiple times).
Once the number of electives needed for the medal is complete, your counselor can place an order for the medal. Completing additional electives enables you to earn Elective Stars that are placed on the ribbon of the medal.
||Number of Electives Needed
|Gold Medal and 1 Gold star
|Gold Medal and 2 Gold stars
|Gold Medal and 3 Gold stars
Visit and Experience:
- Participate in or attend an event celebrating a freedom available in the United States. This event could be an ethnic festival, religious service, parade, or something similar.
- Visit an elderly person. With this person, discuss what changes in freedom they have witnessed in their life. Describe to your counselor how one of these changes has made life in the United States better.
- Visit a religious leader in your community or church. Have them discuss what Freedom of Religion means to them. Discuss with your counselor what life would be like without this freedom.
- Speak with a police officer or lawyer about Freedoms in the United States. Have them explain to you how there are limits to freedom and why we have laws.
- Visit a newspaper, periodical publisher, TV studio, or radio station.
- Interview a reporter. Have them describe to you the Freedom of the Press and why it is important.
- Visit the courthouse of your local community. Meet with a person that works in the court (judge, district attorney, or public defender). Discuss with your counselor how people in the United States are protected by the laws.
- Go with someone that is registering to vote. Witness the process.
- Visit a small independent shop or business. Talk to the owner about what his/her business does and how the Freedoms available in America enable him/her to run his business.
- Visit the website (with parent or guardian�s permission), of an international news organization, foreign government, or International Organization or examine a foreign publication (newspaper, magazine, and/or book) at a library. Find a news story about human rights realized in the United States that is not widely recognized in foreign countries. Describe how life would be different if you did not have that right.
- With your counselor�s approval, choose a speech of national importance speaking to freedom. Find out about the author and the time/situation in which it was given. Explain the importance of the speech at the time it was given. Tell how it applies to all Americans. Describe what in the speech is significant to you and tell why.
- With your counselor�s guidance, research how three persons of different racial, ethnic, or religious backgrounds made a major contribution to the United States. Report back on what you found out to your counselor.
- Using the internet (with parent or guardian�s permission), the library, or other resources, find at least 3 reasons that people came to early America. What freedoms were they trying to gain?
- Using the internet (with parent or guardian�s permission), the library, or other resources, and your counselor�s help, list the Amendments to the Constitution of the United States that added Rights or Freedoms.
- With your counselor�s help; look up the work FREEDOM in the dictionary. Create another definition that describes what freedom means to you.
- Discuss with your counselor why freedom must come with limits. List at least 5 examples.
- Research and detail in writing the background and cause of any of the following Amendments (each one completed will count as an elective):
- Amendment 13 � Abolition of Slavery
- Amendment 15 � Right to Vote regardless of Race
- Amendment 19 � Women�s Right to Vote
- Amendment 22 � Term Limits � Freedom from Dynasty/Corruption
- Amendment 24 � Limitation on Poll Tax
- Amendment 26 � Right for people 18 year old and above to vote
- List the ten amendments in the Bill of Rights. Write a paragraph about each describing what rights it ensured.
Learn by Doing:
- Watch a movie, go to a live performance, or speech that talks about or demonstrates a freedom available in the United States.
- Participate in an election.
- Go to the polls with an adult and see how they cast their vote. Ask them what the right to elect their representatives means to them.
- Write a short story about Freedom in America.
- Write a column for your school newspaper.
- Write to your local newspaper on an issue or something you believe is important.
- Create a poem or song about Freedom.
- Read a book about freedom.
- Write a short story (500 words) on Freedom of Religion.
- Write a short story (500 words) on Freedom of Speech.
- Shoot a video documentary or record an audio documentary questioning an issue or advancing a cause you find important.
- Write and give a speech/talk on something/issue that is important to you.
- Poll 20 adults (at least 10 must be non-family members) asking their opinion on private gun ownership. Ask each person what the Right to Bear Arms means to them. Note their opinions as it relates to their gun ownership. Discuss with your counselor the Right to Bear Arms.
Freedom Gold Award