The great thing about our country is we all can have different backgrounds, experiences and opinions, and still come together and work towards the common good. No matter the level of government – from your local school board to the Congress – people have to compromise – give up some things you want in order to support somethings someone else wants – in order to accomplish their goals. When you earn the Cadette Finding Common Ground badge, you will learn how governments do that – and how you can do it in your everyday life.
Step One: Get to Know Someone Different from You
The best way to learn to find common ground with others is to learn that we have more similarities than differences. By learning about perspectives that are different from ours, we will find that our priorities are often in line with each other, even if we have different ways of approaching them.
Do one or more of the following activities to learn about how others see the world.
Difference of Background
Have a conversation with someone from a different country, state, or town who lives in your community in right now. Ask them about their journey, and the reason for their move. Ask them what their life was like before the move, and what their life is like now. What aspects are the same, and what is different? Share with them your favorite parts of your neighborhood, to help them feel at home.
Difference of Belief
Learn about someone who has a different belief system than you do. Maybe, you have a friend from school who practices a different religion than you do, and you can attend an online service. Maybe, you can interview the youth leader of an interfaith alliance. Maybe, there’s a member of your family who has the opposite political leanings than your household. Have a respectful discussion about your similarities and differences.
Difference of Opinion
Everyone has differences of opinions. Find a friend whose favorite food is something you can’t stand, or who won’t watch your favorite TV show. Have a discussion about their likes and dislikes, and your likes and dislikes. Try their favorite food, and have them try yours while you have a watch party of each other’s favorite shows. Share at least two things you liked about the other’s favorites.
Up nesxt, learn how to make decisions in a group.
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