Logo Title Quebec Reading Connection

You Rule! Create Your Own Country

Forbes, Scott (Author)
Jones, Emma (Illustrator)
Lonely Planet 2015. 96 pages
First published: 2015
ISBN: 9781743607848 (hardcover)
Original language: English
Book type: Non-Fiction

Text Elements:

layout, point of view, setting

Reading Range

 
Cycle
Elementary
Secondary
 
1
2
3
1
2
ELA
K
1
2
3
4
5
6
1
2
3
4
5
ESL
1
2
3
4
5
6
1
2
3
4
5
ESL Intensive & Enriched
5
6
1
2
3
4
5

Description:

What better way to learn about what’s required to develop and run a country than actually running one … or at least pretending to, as this book guides its readers to do.

Presenting options for territorial selection, topographical renderings, settlement requirements and longer-term sustenance needs, the book uses each section as a historical, political or developmental teaching tool. A chapter on modes of government, for instance, includes a list of “Terrible Tyrants.” Some possibilities may seem utopian, but they are grounded in fact: the reader might choose to found their country on rafts or platforms in international waters, given that there exist real plans to develop floating cities. Each section includes quizzes to test and highlight the various criteria and considerations. The tongue-in-cheek subtitles (“You and whose army?” raises questions of national defense) and general tone are an engaging way to broach matters of good citizenship.

The graphics represent the issues in each section—variously shaped mailboxes are presented on a page about forming a postal system, while cartoonish figures of various ethnicities people the pages. Photos of governing families, flags, national artifacts (stamps) and more are included. The layout is bold and colourful, inviting readers to dip in as they are drawn to one section or another.

A short glossary covers some of the nation-related terminology.

  •  

    Create your own country. Who will rule? What will the rules be? Will there be something special and unique about your country to distinguish it from others? Who will you allow in? How will you make your country just?

  •  

    Create your own flag. What is the significance of the colours and symbols?

  •  

    These stories tell about micronations created by someone ambitious. Choose one and write the story of their country’s creation, the challenges they faced and the joys of ruling their own land.

  •  

    Create your own guide to building a nation. Highlight what you see to be the essential points.

  •  

    Brainstorm and list what is needed to create a country. Compare your class list with the topics on the content pages.

  •  

    Create your own country. What will the rules be? Who will rule? Will there be something special and unique about your country to distinguish it from others? Who will you allow in?

  •  

    Create your own flag and currency. What is the significance of the colours and symbols?

  •  

    Write a newspaper article or newsfeed to tell the world about your newly created country.

  •  

    Compare this book with others on the same topic. Which one would you recommend for the next founder of a country? Why?

  •  

    Notice the title, layout and other text components. What draws you in? What are you curious about? Where should we begin as a class? (Are you in a democratic class? If so, then take a vote.)

  •  

    Create a Top Ten list of surprising facts from the book.

  •  

    At home, watch a teacher-selected show on border security, then discuss it in class. Is border security necessary in Canada? Elsewhere? Why or why not? Share your opinions. Use your experiences crossing the border or entering other countries to enrich the discussion.

  •  

    Create a skit in which one or more people are being interviewed by a customs agent at a border crossing/airport. Practise and present the skit to your peers.

  • To exercise critical judgment
  • To use creativity
  • To use information
  • Citizenship and Community Life
  • Geography, History and Citizenship
  • Social Sciences