I wrote here back in November about signing up for TeenPact One Day. Well, the day came when we had to pack for Nashville and head that way. We decided to go there the night before, because Nashville is four hours away from our home. The program started at 10am and it would have been very difficult to leave the house around 5am to give ourselves time for stopping and breakfast etc.
Teen Pact One Day is a six-hour program for children ages 8-12 which happens at the Capitol building. They have them all over the US and you should locate your state on the map and see about the dates for your state.
All the kids are homeschoolers, incidentally. The staff is mainly teenagers, but, of course, they have adult staff as well.
The teenage staffers are amazing in so many ways: attire, attitude, knowledge, kindness, professionalism, love for God and love for country. I felt like I was on the set of The West Wing not in terms of policy making (these kiddos are conservative, at the opposite spectrum of The West Wing staffers), but in the atmosphere created by and mannerisms of the young people. The dress code is very professional: tie, coats, button-down shirts for the men, skirts only and business coats for the girls etc.
Add to that their name tags and lanyards, a handful of papers in their hands, a perpetual smile on their faces, and their standing along the walls during the meetings, and you feel just like at a White House briefing or – as I mentioned above – on the set of The West Wing.
I went with my son, as one parent must accompany each child. My husband took our daughter to Adventure Science Center and they had a ball.
My son’s schedule looked like this: introduction of staff, worship, sword drill (they looked up Bible verses about how God sets up kings and takes them down, and we are to submit to worldly authority), how the government works, prayer walk (tour of the Capitol with a scavenger hunt and a couple of places where we stopped to pray for our law makers), and lunch. After lunch, they had a seminar about public speaking and one about how a bill becomes a law. At the very end, they had a brief commencement ceremony during which the children walked up front, shook everybody’s hand, and received their certificate.
My son learned a lot. I did, too. His bill was approved by the mock session of the House of Representatives. Part of his homework was to write to his State Senator (Doug Overbey) and Congressman (Dale Carr) to let them know he is praying for them and to thank them for their service. Senator Overbey has already answered my son, thanking him for his letter and for the kind words.
There would be so much to say about this, but suffice it to say that we want to go back next year and look forward to more activities of this nature with both our children in the future.