Thursday, June 07, 2018

Why start or join a club?


DRAFT 6/6/18
Designed to Un-Polarize

Club is an English civil war neologism. It was a term with strong overtones... which are entirely lost today since we use the term casually for all kinds of societies and associations of like minded individuals for a purpose…'club-men' were those who deliberately suppressed political differences, in order to combine and protect their interests against all comers... 'Clubbing together' in self-defense. Lisa Jardine, "On a Grander Scale: The Outstanding Life of Sir Christopher Wren," 2002 HarperCollins, New York, p 112 

We are working to bring back this type of club, updated for the 21st Century by way of Ben Franklin, Malcolm Knowles and Sugatra Mitra. Will you join us? 

Our purpose is to help every neighborhood become what Mitra calls a Self Organizing Learning Environment with a Franklin Circle or similar group, initially focused on citizenship to help overcome the extreme polarization today.

For this purpose the Small Business Chamber of Commerce, Inc is sponsoring meetings for potential leaders of such clubs in their neighborhood..

Here in Denver come at 11:30 a.m. for lunch together, then in just an hour we'll give you enough information to start your own group with your neighbors and friends, see www.Meetup.com/Franklin-Circles 

Why do we do this? Because we believe these small groups are the best way to restore vitalism and dynamism to the U.S. economy.

"Never doubt that a small group can change the world, indeed it is the only thing that ever has." Margret Meade

To have the greatest impact on your neighborhood, to do the most to make it into a real community as quickly as possible, you might want to consider starting a Franklin Circle. 

What is a Franklin Circle? In 1727 Benjamin Franklin formed his ‘more Ingenious Acquaintances’ into a club for mutual improvement called the Junto. Franklin’s original Junto Group met each week for 35 years, and Franklin called it ‘the best school,’ it having helped him and the others learn to become successful businesspeople and civic leaders.

Training Magazine has cited Franklin’s Junto as an example of the best principles of modern adult education. The Franklin Circle may be Franklin’s best invention!

‘Individuals Associated can do more for society, and themselves, than they can in isolation.’ Benjamin Franklin

As new groups start we will launch state-wide programs, that are expected to include:

1. Monthly neighborhood newsletters and distribution, an online annual calendar and membership directory, each year a table at state conventions for major political parties and other state-wide event such as the Colorado State Fair.

2. An off-year mock Colorado Caucus starting in 2019 that will include all registered voters regardless of affiliation.

3. A national workshop for individual citizens, lobbyists, associations, and others who want to understand the legislative process at the state level.

This is a new project of your Small Business Chamber of Commerce, Inc. We cooperate with local chambers, service clubs, and community newspaper to strengthen the grassroots in business and politics.

For more about the Junto, what Franklin called his original circle, and adult-learning in general see:
  1. Training Magazine, “What We Know for Sure About Adult Learning,” June, 1995.
  2. Malcolm Knowles, Self Directed Learning—A Guide for Learners & Teachers, Josey-Bass, 1975. 
  3. Benjamin Franklin’s Autobiography, Yale University Press, 1964. (Best annotated edition.) 
  4. H.W. Brands, The First American—The Life and Times of Benjamin Franklin, Doubleday, 2000. 
  5. Ronald K Esplin, MA Thesis, Franklin’s Colleagues and Their Club: the Junto.. Uof VA, 1979.
Small Business Chamber of Commerce, Inc.
1881 Buchtel Blvd. #501, Denver, CO 80210     www.SmallBizChamber.org  Twitter @IDEACafe      Facebook/Small.Business.Chamber /JohnSWrenMBA 
Call for a free appointment. (303)861-1447