ALEX Classroom Resource

  

Why Government

  Classroom Resource Information  

Title:

Why Government

URL:

https://www.icivics.org/teachers/lesson-plans/why-government?referer=node/10467&page_title=Foundations%20of%20Government

Content Source:

Other
iCivics
Type: Lesson/Unit Plan

Overview:

In this lesson from iCivics, students take a look at two political thinkers that spent a lot of time trying to answer the question, "Why Government?" - Thomas Hobbes and John Locke. This lesson combines our Influence Library entries on these men and adds activities that ask students to compare and contrast Hobbes and Locke and to think about how these philosophers influenced those that followed in their footsteps. 

Content Standard(s):
Social Studies
SS2010 (2010)
Grade: 7
Civics
2 ) Explain essential characteristics of the political system of the United States, including the organization and function of political parties and the process of selecting political leaders.

•  Describing the influence of John Locke, Thomas Hobbes, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Thomas Paine, Niccolò Machiavelli, Charles de Montesquieu, and François-Marie Arouet (Voltaire) on the political system of the United States
Unpacked Content
Strand: History, Civics and Government
Course Title: Civics
Evidence Of Student Attainment:
Students:
  • Describe the influence of important philosophers on the U.S. political system.
Teacher Vocabulary:
  • philosophers
Knowledge:
Students know:
  • The important ideas and contributions of historical thinkers such as John Locke, Thomas Hobbes, Jean-Jaques Rousseau, Thomas Paine, Niccolo Machiavelli, Charles de Montesquieu, Voltaire.
Skills:
Students are able to:
  • Relate the ideas put forth by important philosophers to founding ideas and documents of American government. Interpret primary source documents to identify original ideas.
Understanding:
Students understand that:
  • Many of the founding documents of the United States are based upon the ideas of various Enlightenment Philosophers.

Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards
AAS Standard:
SS.AAS.7.2- Define political parties; identify that political leaders are elected in the United States and that political parties work to get their candidates elected.


Social Studies
SS2010 (2010)
Grade: 7
Civics
3 ) Compare the government of the United States with other governmental systems, including monarchy, limited monarchy, oligarchy, dictatorship, theocracy, and pure democracy.

Unpacked Content
Strand: History, Civics and Government
Course Title: Civics
Evidence Of Student Attainment:
Students:
  • Compare and Contrast other forms of government with the U.S. government focusing on who has the power and how power is acquired/achieved.
Teacher Vocabulary:
  • power
  • federalism
  • republic
Knowledge:
Students know:
  • The characteristics of the various forms of government found around the world including Federal Republic (representative democracy), Monarchy (absolute monarchy), Limited monarchy (constitutional monarchy), Oligarchy, Dictatorship, Theocracy, and Pure democracy (direct democracy).
Skills:
Students are able to:
  • Interpret primary source documents.
Understanding:
Students understand that:
  • The system of government of the United States can be compared to other forms of government in the world.

Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards
AAS Standard:
SS.AAS.7.3- Describe the basic ideals of American democracy, including natural rights, basic freedoms, and democratic representation; identify characteristics of other government systems including, monarchy, dictatorship, and democracy.


Social Studies
SS2010 (2010)
Grade: 7
Civics
6 ) Explain the importance of juvenile, adult, civil, and criminal laws within the judicial system of the United States.

•  Explaining rights of citizens as guaranteed by the Bill of Rights under the Constitution of the United States
•  Explaining what is meant by the term rule of law
•  Justifying consequences of committing a civil or criminal offense
•  Contrasting juvenile and adult laws at local, state, and federal levels (Alabama)
Unpacked Content
Strand: History, Civics and Government
Course Title: Civics
Evidence Of Student Attainment:
Students:
  • Differentiate between juvenile and adult laws, as well as between civil and criminal laws. Identify the protections given in the U.S. Bill of Rights.
Teacher Vocabulary:
  • juvenile
  • civil law
  • criminal law
  • rights
  • Bill of Rights
  • rule of law
  • state
  • federal
  • local
  • court
  • offense
  • felony
  • misdemeanor
  • jail
  • prison
  • juvenile detention center
Knowledge:
Students know:
  • The similarities and differences between civil and criminal law.
  • The structure of the juvenile court system.
  • The rights and freedoms guaranteed in the Bill of Rights.
Skills:
Students are able to:
  • Use primary source documents to justify the actions of courts.
Understanding:
Students understand that:
  • Laws are different for adults and juveniles and that there are separate civil and criminal laws and courts.

Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards
AAS Standard:
SS.AAS.7.6- Identify the basic rights under the Bill of Rights; recognize how government protects individual rights; recognize that citizens have a responsibility to follow laws and that there are consequences for breaking laws.


Social Studies
SS2010 (2010)
Grade: 9
World History: 1500 to the Present
5 ) Describe the rise of absolutism and constitutionalism and their impact on European nations.

•  Contrasting philosophies of Thomas Hobbes and John Locke and the belief in the divine right of kings
•  Comparing absolutism as it developed in France, Russia, and Prussia, including the reigns of Louis XIV, Peter the Great, and Frederick the Great
•  Identifying major provisions of the Petition of Rights and the English Bill of Rights
Unpacked Content
Strand: Economics, History, Civics and Government
Course Title: World History: 1500 to the Present
Evidence Of Student Attainment:
Students:
  • Evaluate the impact of the philosophies of absolutism and constitutionalism, including the impact of the Petition of Rights and the English Bill of Rights.
  • Compare and contrast the philosophies of constitutionalism and absolutism as evidenced by the ideas of social and political philosophers and philosophies of the time.
Teacher Vocabulary:
  • absolutism
  • constitutionalism
  • Petition of Rights
  • English Bill of Rights
Knowledge:
Students know:
  • The definitions of absolutism and constitutionalism and the impact these philosophies had on European nations.
Skills:
Students are able to:
  • Use primary resources, evaluate influential philosophies.
Understanding:
Students understand that:
  • The philosophies of absolutism and constitutionalism had a lasting impact on European nations.

Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards
AAS Standard:
SS.AAS.9.5- Define natural right; identify common characteristics of a monarchy and of a constitutional government.
SS.AAS.9.5a - Identify the Petition of Rights and the English Bill of Rights by giving examples of civil liberties and limited government.


Social Studies
SS2010 (2010)
Grade: 9
World History: 1500 to the Present
6 ) Identify significant ideas and achievements of scientists and philosophers of the Scientific Revolution and the Age of Enlightenment.

Examples: Scientific Revolution—astronomical theories of Nicolaus Copernicus and Galileo Galilei, Sir Isaac Newton's law of gravity

Age of Enlightenment—philosophies of Charles de Montesquieu, François-Marie Arouet (Voltaire), and Jean-Jacques Rousseau

Unpacked Content
Strand: History, Civics and Government
Course Title: World History: 1500 to the Present
Evidence Of Student Attainment:
Students:
  • Identify and evaluate the specific scientists, philosophers, ideas, and achievements of the Scientific Revolution and the Age of Enlightenment.
Teacher Vocabulary:
  • Scientific Revolution
  • Age of Enlightenment
  • Sir Isaac Newton's law of gravity
Knowledge:
Students know:
  • The ideas and achievements of scientists and philosophers of the Scientific Revolution and the Age of Enlightenment.
Skills:
Student is able to:
  • Identify key figures and achievements using primary and secondary resources.
  • Evaluate the importance of historic individuals, ideas, and achievement.
Understanding:
Students understand that:
  • There were significant ideas and achievements that came out of the Scientific Revolution and the Age of Enlightenment.

Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards
AAS Standard:
SS.AAS.9.6- Recognize important factors of the Scientific Revolution and the Age of Enlightenment; identify the scientific advancements that led to the Enlightenment.


Social Studies
SS2010 (2010)
Grade: 10
United States History I: Beginnings to the Industrial Revolution
4 ) Describe the political system of the United States based on the Constitution of the United States. [A.1.a., A.1.b., A.1.d., A.1.g., A.1.i.]

•  Interpreting the Preamble to the Constitution of the United States; separation of powers; federal system; elastic clause; the Bill of Rights; and the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, Fifteenth, and Nineteenth Amendments as key elements of the Constitution of the United States
•  Describing inadequacies of the Articles of Confederation
•  Distinguishing personalities, issues, ideologies, and compromises related to the Constitutional Convention and the ratification of the Constitution of the United States, including the role of the Federalist papers
•  Identifying factors leading to the development and establishment of political parties, including Alexander Hamilton's economic policies, conflicting views of Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton, George Washington's Farewell Address, and the election of 1800
Unpacked Content
Strand: Economics, History, Civics and Government
Course Title: United States History I: Beginnings to the Industrial Revolution
Evidence Of Student Attainment:
Students:
  • Describe the political system of the United States based on the Constitution of the United States and the factors that influenced its development.
  • Identify and analyze factors that have lead to the various interpretations of the Constitution and related documents.
Teacher Vocabulary:
  • political system
  • elements
  • distinguishing
  • ideologies
  • conflicting
Knowledge:
Students know:
  • The inadequacies of Articles of Confederation and how these lead to the writing of the Constitution.
  • Personalities, issues, ideologies, and compromises related to the Constitutional Convention and the ratification of the Constitution of the United States.
  • The purpose and effects of the Federalist Papers.
  • Details of the political system of the United States based on the Constitution of the United States.
  • How to interpret the Preamble to the Constitution.
  • The purpose of the separation of powers and how this works in the U.S. federal system.
  • The meaning and purpose of the elastic clause.
  • The purpose of the Bill of Rights and the effects of these amendments.
  • Factors leading to the development and establishment of political parties, including Alexander Hamilton's economic policies, conflicting views of Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton, George Washington's Farewell Address, and the election of 1800.
  • The reasons for and effects of the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, Fifteenth, and Nineteenth Amendments.
Skills:
Students are able to:
  • Analyze and describe the political system of the United States based on the Constitution of the United States by giving a verbal or written account with characteristics of the political system.
  • Interpret the Preamble of the Constitution, separation of powers, federal system; elastic clause, the Bill of Rights; and the Thirteenth, Fourteenth, Fifteenth, and Nineteenth Amendments by examining these parts.
  • Describe the inadequacies of the Articles of Confederation by giving a verbal or written account of the weaknesses.
  • Distinguish personalities, ideas, issues, ideologies and compromises related to the Constitutional by highlighting these differences.
Understanding:
Students understand that:
  • The Constitution replaced a weak Articles of Confederation and provides the basis for governing the United States.

Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards
AAS Standard:
SS.AAS.10.4- Understand that the U.S. Constitution is our plan of government.
SS.AAS.10.4a - Define the amendments including the Bill of Rights.
SS.AAS.10.4b - Define the major provisions of the Constitution including the separation of powers, checks and balances, the three branches of government - executive, legislative, and judicial.
SS.AAS.10.4c - Identify the strengths and weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation.


Tags: Age of Enlightenment, John Locke, rule of law, Thomas Hobbs
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Author: Ginger Boyd