Teaching children to be good citizens #HelloNatWest

I recently started the process of applying for British citizenship. It’s raised all sorts of thoughts and feelings for me. Thankfully, I’m allowed dual nationality, otherwise it would all be a much bigger deal than it is. As it is, I’m already finding it quite an adjustment starting to think of the United Kingdom as my country. I think I will find it a bit weird when I can finally call myself British.

Anyway, I took the Life in the UK test a couple of weeks ago for the second time because I’d misplaced my test result paper the first time. A bit of a story I won’t get into right now but, basically, a friend joked that I’d failed the part of the test that was scoring my understanding of British bureaucracy and I think he’s right.

What cramming revising at midnight the night found me doing, was going over a lot of questions about what makes a good citizen. It suddenly occurred to me as the kind of epiphany you only get in the wee hours of the morning that I’ll be the one teaching my children what citizenship means at its core.

I’ve since joked that, as they’re growing up British, this means imparting a generous dose of self-deprecation and sarcasm. But I know that actually it means try our best to raise them with the values we want to see reflected in our society. Good citizens shape a country with their love and compassion, and, hopefully, with a good dose of common sense. Out of those, values which truly make society like loyalty and fairness naturally flow.

In a sense, I’m parenting them for the world we all want, which seems huge. A bit overwhelming. Picking apart what that means in the here and now is challenging to say the least. How does one pitch politics to a preschooler? I’m just hoping that what they see us doing day to day will reflect what we believe about this country of ours and about our place in it, that what we do will indeed match what we say.

Loyalty and fairness are currently hot topics for NatWest, who’ve invitied me to blog a bit about how these values fit in the context of our family. NatWest’s Hello/Goodbye campaign is extending loyalty to current customers by waving goodbye to best offers aimed only at new customers while excluding existing customers, goodbye to 0% teaser rates that cost more in the long run and goodbye to the practice of hiding the best deals online.

The fluffy friend in their fairness experiment video humorously illustrates what banks have been up to, picking customers up and dropping them as easily.

I’m working with BritMums and NatWest on this project and have been compensated. All opinions are my own.


  1. November 1, 2014 / 8:25 pm

    I have friends going through this exact same thing at the moment, although as they’re Malaysian they have to actually give up their Malaysian citizenship which as you say, raises all kinds of other questions. Do citizens of Britain have different values to anywhere else? I’ve never thought of these issues before but really interesting to think about.

  2. November 3, 2014 / 7:37 am

    ah raising kids to be good citizens is so important and often comes far behind gym practice and piano lessons..the fact you think about it is great
    becky recently posted..How to save energy on your laundry

  3. November 3, 2014 / 3:44 pm

    Interesting to hear you’ll be taking dual citizenship and how you are parenting your little ones to understand loyalty and fairness, I am hoping many other companies start following suit as Nat West’s initiative is spot on.

  4. November 3, 2014 / 6:10 pm

    First of all well done for passing twice – I knew you would but still it can be stressful. I also think it’s really important to instil good values in our kids – we have to pass on what we can.

    Laura x
    Laura recently posted..Personal hearing loss stories

  5. November 5, 2014 / 11:16 am

    Interesting post…one usually looks at teaching children to be good individuals as opposed to being a good citizen, part of a society, but totally just as important and something that we should all think about. We are the people who shape our society and what we do has an affect on others around us every single day. Well done for passing! xx
    Katie Albury recently posted..Come Dine with Friends…Benvenuti Amici

  6. November 9, 2014 / 7:43 pm

    I agree completely about teaching children fairness and loyalty – Ben has grown into a caring, kind and considerate little man, but he is autistic and naturally gentle in his nature (something that is sadly often exploited by his peers at school). His sister is two, and at the moment, couldn’t give a fig about fairness – I think she’s going to be more challenging!
    Vicky recently posted..worn: all the colours and patterns

  7. Nadeem
    June 4, 2016 / 2:54 am

    Practice Life in The UK Test from this website. Its free and your will pass on your first attempt

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