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TIE (Tanzania Institute of Education)
The Importance of Teaching Patriotism in Schools
Patriotism can mean so much more and can be practiced by anyone in their own way. There seems to be a disconnect between what students think patriotism is and what it actually is. Here is why we should teach students patriotism at schools.
Students should learn about patriotism’s larger meaning as well as its unifying aspects by thinking on their own. The phrase ‘love for the country’ refers to the concept of love for all citizens regardless of caste or religion, whereas ‘loyalty towards the country’ refers to the concept of loyalty toward the nation.
The best way for a country to grow is with the support of its people. People who are patriots are always thinking about the development of their country and willing to fight against enemies who try to sabotage it. It is considered an honor to be a true patriot.
Teaching patriotism to children is not about coaching them to be soldiers and sending them off to war. It is not about singing our national anthem daily or celebrating a particular day. Patriotism is about respecting the nation, the people living within its boundaries, and every aspect that builds our country. The feeling cannot be a compulsion. It must be a choice and the option should be available to young minds. And what better place to teach patriotism than schools, the very place where students go to learn.
1. It will instil in them a love for their country
The basic form of patriotism is having a love for your own country. If patriotism were to be taught in schools, the students would be able to slowly develop and sense of pride for his/her country.
The students will also understand why it is important to have respect for the fundamental structures of the country. Students could even have lessons about important institutions like the government and the constitution. The goal is to make them feel that the country is worth fighting for.
2. Learn to appreciate and respect their fellow citizens
Patriotism does not have to do with only loving your country. It also means loving and respecting your fellow citizens. Patriotic rituals do not matter but you cannot be patriotic if you do not stand up and help the people around you. Students should know that they can practice patriotism by being supportive of their fellow citizens.
You can cheer for athletes representing your country in international competitions or help your fellow neighbors. Students should learn that practicing patriotism is not just a grand act, but even small gestures can help.
3. It will give them a sense of identity
Young people these days sometimes have a hard time identifying with a certain group. They might feel like loners who have no place where they belong. Teaching patriotism in schools will help students build up a sense of identity. It will help them feel like they belong in their country.
The students get the chance to understand that they have a purpose in society. It helps builds the students' character development. A sense of pride grows in them that there is nothing wrong with strongly identifying with their nationality.
4. Develop a Bond with Their Home Country
Why is patriotism important? It’s important because it teaches children what patriotism is, and it allows older students to learn examples of patriotism that formed constitutions, and even countries. If patriotism was taught in schools, children would be able to build a sense of national pride in their society over time.
The kids will also comprehend why it is critical to preserve the country’s essential institutions such as the government body, the constitution or even the military. In addition to this, it will develop interest in political careers as students may grow an urge to serve their country.