Thursday, June 21, 2018

How Does It Work?

A study group offers many benefits to its members. It provides a structure for furthering individual development - while offerings its members the ability to compare notes and exchange ideas and concepts with other members. Additionally, they incentivize members to overcome tendencies to procrastinate in their personal studies.

Staring a Constitutional Study group here is pretty easy...simply click the link Start a Study Group and complete the form. In time, we anticipate others in the same area will make contact, via this directory, and the Study Group will come to life.

 

Having said that, what are some ideas on how to start and  build your study group.

Keep it Small

In most cases a small study group is most advantageous. Limiting the size of a group to six, or fewer, will optimize the member's ability to communicate. Large groups often create logistical problems, such as scheduling conflicts. This is true whether one hosts the group an on-line or physically gathers to meet. Limit the size of your group in your description so that no one feels excluded.

Be Organized

Have an agenda for each meeting. An agenda makes it more likely the group meets it goal - to enhance the members knowledge of the Constitution and the Founding through a Socratic interchange. Ensure all members are aware of the agenda, the study material, and the goals of the session. The agenda should include details on what is discussed and a time frame for so doing. Set both a beginning and end time for the session. You may want to recap the last meeting and then proceed to the new material for the majority of the session. The last minutes can be dedicated to assigning the agenda for the next meeting and discussion of ways to improve the workings of the group.

Set Responsibilities

The responsibilities of group members need be delineated and clear. The leader sets the agenda and assembles relevant materials. The secretary (if you have one) will create a record of meetings and distribute them to the group. A moderator will ensure the group stays focused on the agenda.

Where to Meet

 Your Study group can meet in any several ways - establish a chat room, use Google Chat, AOL Instant Messaging, or somem other similar system. You might employ one of the web-conferencing tools, such as Skype. If you limit the size of your group to six, or fewer, members, you can easily maintain focus within the study group.

If you choose to meet physically, the identification of suitable conference facility within your local area - libraries, schools and community colleges, churches, and private clubs such as Toastmasters, Rotary, Kiwanis clubs - is not an insurmountable obstacle. You can consider using one's own living room for small groups.

Resources

Fortunately, resources will among the least of your probelms. This website alone can provide more than sufficient original source material for your use.

You can base your study group on a book such as The Making of America,  The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States of America, or The Constitutio: Understanding America's Founding Document.

You might consider using the free courses at Hillsdale College as the basis for your group's study. You could even use a 1928 Army Training Manual for the basis of your group's study.

 

 

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