Standard 1: Foundations of Government, Law and the American Political System

General Information
Number: SS.5.CG.1
Title: Foundations of Government, Law and the American Political System
Type: Standard
Subject: Social Studies
Grade: 5
Strand: Civics and Government

Related Benchmarks

This cluster includes the following benchmarks.

Related Access Points

This cluster includes the following access points.

Access Points

SS.5.CG.1.AP.1
Identify the idea of “unalienable rights” in the Declaration of Independence as it relates to each citizen.
SS.5.CG.1.AP.2
Recognize a compromise that was made during the writing of the Constitution.
SS.5.CG.1.AP.3
Recognize the United States is a representative government.
SS.5.CG.1.AP.4
Recognize the significance of the Bill of Rights in the U.S. Constitution.

Related Resources

Vetted resources educators can use to teach the concepts and skills in this topic.

Educational Game

Tic Tac Toe Bill of Rights:

In this lesson, students will review what they already know about the Bill of Rights by completing a Bill of Rights Tic-Tac-Toe board of choice assignments.  

Type: Educational Game

Lesson Plans

The Great Seal of the United States: What Did these Authors Claim?:

This is lesson #5 in the paired text unit series for The Great Seal of the United States by Terri DeGezelle and The Great Seal of the United States by Norman Pearl. In this lesson, students will learn about the “unalienable rights” expressed in the Declaration of Independence, compare the claims made and evidence provided by both authors in each text about the Great Seal of the United States, and explain how both author’s arguments support the idea that the Great Seal, a symbol of the United States, is a reminder of some rights expressed in the Declaration of Independence. Then students will write an expository essay explaining why the Great Seal of the United States was created and how this symbol of the United States is a reminder of rights conveyed in the Declaration of Independence.

This ELA/Civics Integrated Text Unit is designed to support students with the integration of civics into the ELA classroom through the reading and studying of Norman Pearl’s book The Great Seal of the United States. Throughout the unit, students will identify new vocabulary, describe both Florida and USA seals, as well as the importance of national symbols and their meaning. Using timelines, graphic organizers, worksheets, and other activities they will connect these symbols to other documents like the Declaration of Independence and the understanding of unalienable rights. Each lesson in this series leads to a culminating activity in which students will use their knowledge and understanding of symbols and relevant details to create their own Great Seal.

This resource uses books that you will need to obtain before implementing the resource. The Great Seal of the United States by Terri DeGezelle is on the Florida Department of Education's reading list.

Type: Lesson Plan

From the Articles of Confederation to Two Sides- Lesson 3 of 3:

Students will research significant leaders that were either Federalists or an Anti-Federalist and their reasoning for supporting their respective side. Students will work to create a coded Scratch presentation to support their research. 

This is part 3 of a 3 part mini-unit that integrates Computer Science and Coding with Civics. 

Type: Lesson Plan

A Nation for Representation: Part 3:

Students will use their pseudocode of a representative government from lesson 2 to create an interactive component in Scratch for their target audience. A peer review rubric will be used to make adjustments and an interactive digital gallery walk will ensue. This is lesson 3 of a 3-part integrated computer science and civics mini-unit.

Type: Lesson Plan

From Articles of Confederation to Two Sides- Lesson 2 of 3:

Students will review the differences between the views of Federalists and Anti-Federalist and then explore created code to determine where there might be bugs and how they might fix the code. Students will use their knowledge on coding to perform edits that allow for the Scratch program to run. This is lesson 2 of 3 in a Computer Science and Civics integrated lesson plan.

Type: Lesson Plan

From the Articles of Confederation to Two Sides- Lesson 1 of 3:

Students will learn about block coding completion within Scratch to determine what happened with the Articles of Confederation based on the strengths and weaknesses. In this lesson plan, students are able to perform the lesson without the use of their own computers to see how they can complete the code. This is part one of a three-part civics and computer science integrated series. 

Type: Lesson Plan

A Nation for Representation: Part 2:

In this integrated lesson, students will write pseudocode to identify whether an example shows representative government. The students will plan out an interactive game using the Scratch platform where the representative government is demonstrated using a graphic organizer to guide their planning. This lesson is part two of a multipart unit that will end with a culminating project that identifies the characteristics of a representative government.

Type: Lesson Plan

Part 2: The Declaration of Independence Gives Us Unalienable Rights:

This lesson will allow the students to analyze primary sources while recognizing that the Declaration of Independence affirms that every U.S. citizen has certain unalienable rights. Students will identify the grievances detailed in the Declaration of Independence and track the development of this argument while explaining the reasoning. Students will write an expository piece about the consequences the British government faced for not recognizing that citizens have certain unalienable rights.

Type: Lesson Plan

Connecting Digital Music Making to the Declaration of Independence:

Students will listen to a variety of patriotic songs and identify instruments that are commonly associated with patriotic music. They will be assigned a section of the Declaration of Independence to read and choose a pre-recorded musical loop of instruments to go along with their sentence in this integrated lesson plan.

Type: Lesson Plan

Part 1: The Declaration of Independence Gives Us Unalienable Rights:

This lesson will allow the students to analyze primary sources while recognizing that the Declaration of Independence affirms that every U.S. citizen has certain unalienable rights. Students will understand the importance of the Preamble to the Declaration of Independence and create new meanings to certain words in the Preamble.  The students will engage in a classroom discussion about the Preamble, it's purpose, and how the Preamble would be different if it was written today.

Type: Lesson Plan

Shhh! We're Writing the Constitution: Figurative Language During the Grand Convention:

This is lesson 3 in the text unit series for Shh! We're Writing the Constitution by Jean Fritz. This lesson allows students to interpret unknown words and figurative language including simile, metaphor, idioms, hyperbole, and personification within the text. Students will infer attitudes or perspectives reflected by state representatives toward the meeting, ideas expressed in speeches given by the state representatives, and challenges faced during the Grand Convention all while developing their understanding of figurative language.

This unit will help students understand why and how the Constitution was created, including: the thirteen states and important historical figures present during the creation, the challenges and conflicts that state representatives faced during writing the Constitution, motifs and themes during the “Grand Convention,” and the relationship between state and national constitutions. Lessons will allow students to identify citizens’ civic duties outlined by the Constitution, the relationship between the federal and state Constitutions, and important historical symbols. Each part of the unit will include an in-depth dive into vocabulary and how it applies to the meaning of the text.

This resource uses a book that is on the Florida Department of Education's reading list. This book is not provided with this resource.

Type: Lesson Plan

Shhh! We're Writing the Constitution: What is the Constitution?:

This is lesson # 1 in the text unit series for 12 for the text SHH! We’re Writing the Constitution by Jean Fritz. This lesson will introduce and teach vocabulary found in the text. Students will demonstrate understanding of the academic vocabulary as found in the text. The teacher will assess background knowledge students have about the Constitution. Students will also discuss why the U.S. Constitution was created while identifying the central idea of the selected text and how the relevant details provide support.

This unit will help students understand why and how the Constitution was created, including: the original thirteen colonies and important historical figures present during the creation, the challenges and conflicts that state representatives faced during writing the Constitution, motifs and themes during the “Grand Convention,” and the relationship between state and national constitutions. Lessons will allow students to identify citizens’ civic duties outlined by the Constitution, the relationship between the federal and state Constitutions, and important historical symbols. Each part of the unit will include an in-depth dive into vocabulary and how it applies to the meaning of the text.

This resource uses a book that is on the Florida Department of Education's reading list. This book is not provided with this resource.

Type: Lesson Plan

Shhh! We're Writing the Constitution: Historical Figures Character Traits:

This is lesson #7 in the text unit series for Shh! We're Writing the Constitution by Jean Fritz. In this lesson, students will research five historical figures who led the United States to a representative government by comparing and contrasting primary and secondary sources. The students will write and reflect on what makes a good leader.

This unit will help students understand why and how the Constitution was created, including: the thirteen states and important historical figures present during the creation, the challenges and conflicts that state representatives faced during writing the Constitution, motifs and themes during the “Grand Convention,” and the relationship between state and national constitutions. Lessons will allow students to identify citizens’ civic duties outlined by the Constitution, the relationship between the federal and state Constitutions, and important historical symbols. Each part of the unit will include an in-depth dive into vocabulary and how it applies to the meaning of the text.

This resource uses a book that is on the Florida Department of Education's reading list. This book is not provided with this resource.

Type: Lesson Plan

Shhh! We're Writing the Constitution: Summarize for Comprehension:

This is lesson # 11 in the text unit series for SHH! We’re Writing the Constitution by Jean Fritz. After reading the entire text, students will defend a claim on whether or not they would have ratified the Constitution.

This unit will help students understand why and how the Constitution was created, including: the thirteen states and important historical figures present during the creation, the challenges and conflicts that state representatives faced during writing the Constitution, motifs and themes during the “Grand Convention,” and the relationship between state and national constitutions. Lessons will allow students to identify citizens’ civic duties outlined by the Constitution, the relationship between the federal and state Constitutions, and important historical symbols. Each part of the unit will include an in-depth dive into vocabulary and how it applies to the meaning of the text.

This resource uses a book that is on the Florida Department of Education's reading list. This book is not provided with this resource.

Type: Lesson Plan

Shhh! We're Writing the Constitution: Preamble Close Read:

This is lesson #5 in the text unit series for Shh! We’re Writing the Constitution by Jean Fritz. Students will learn more about the preamble to the Constitution after reading pages 33-38 and 49. Using the text and the Declaration of Independence, they will answer text-dependent questions to deepen their understanding of the preamble and how it helped define their rights as citizens.

This unit will help students understand why and how the Constitution was created, including: the original thirteen colonies and important historical figures present during the creation, the challenges and conflicts that state representatives faced during writing the Constitution, motifs and themes during the “Grand Convention,” and the relationship between state and national constitutions. Lessons will allow students to identify citizens’ civic duties outlined by the Constitution, the relationship between the federal and state Constitutions, and important historical symbols. Each part of the unit will include an in-depth dive into vocabulary and how it applies to the meaning of the text.

This resource uses a book that is on the Florida Department of Education's reading list. This book is not provided with this resource.

Type: Lesson Plan

A Controversial Constitution:

In this lesson, students will identify the Federalists’ and Anti-Federalists’ arguments regarding the ratification of the U.S. Constitution. Students will collaborate to analyze the ideas about the U.S. Constitution put forth by the Federalists and the Anti-Federalists.

Type: Lesson Plan

Shhh! We're Writing the Constitution: Text Structure and the U.S. Constitution:

In this lesson 6, students will read Shhh! We're Writing the Constitution by Jean Fritz and review key vocabulary from the text to become proficient with the meaning of the vocabulary words. Students will also have the opportunity to recall the words throughout the text. The teacher will review chronological order as a form of text structure and have students arrange historical events from the story in the order they took place. The teacher will also discuss the compare and contrast text structure, as it applies to the text. While reviewing chronological order, students will explain the goals of the 1787 Constitutional Convention. The idea is that while reviewing the chronological order, students will use a graphic organizer to explain historical events as mentioned in the text. The teacher will do a mini lesson to review primary and secondary sources if necessary.

This unit will help students understand why and how the Constitution was created, including: the original thirteen colonies and important historical figures present during the creation, the challenges and conflicts that state representatives faced during writing the Constitution, motifs and themes during the “Grand Convention,” and the relationship between state and national constitutions. Lessons will allow students to identify citizens’ civic duties outlined by the Constitution, the relationship between the federal and state Constitutions, and important historical symbols. Each part of the unit will include an in-depth dive into vocabulary and how it applies to the meaning of the text.

This resource uses a book that is on the Florida Department of Education's reading list. This book is not provided with this resource.

Type: Lesson Plan

Shhh! We're Writing the Constitution: Compare and Contrast the Articles of Confederation and Constitution:

This is lesson 4 in the text unit series for Shhh! We’re Writing the Constitution by Jean Fritz. Students will compare and contrast the information about two founding documents, the Articles of Confederation and the Constitution. They will complete a graphic organizer that shows how these documents are alike and different. Students will take information about the Articles of Confederation and the Constitution and use them to demonstrate understanding of text structure while completing a graphic organizer.

This resource uses a book that is on the Florida Department of Education's reading list. This book is not provided with this resource.

Type: Lesson Plan

Aaron and Alexander: Lesson 3: Important Documents:

This is lesson #3 in the text unit series for Aaron and Alexander the Most Famous Duel in American History. As a final prereading activity for this text, students will read an article about the important documents, written as the framework for establishing the U.S. government. While they are reading, they will learn about the Bill of Rights, Constitution and Declaration of Independence, and how they helped establish the U.S. government. They will develop connections to who Aaron Burr and Alexander Hamilton were. Students will complete a collaborative activity to become experts about one of the founding documents and share with their peers. They will find the central idea and relevant details of their section of the article provided. To end the lesson, students will summarize the information they learned about the founding documents that helped establish the framework for the U.S. government.

This resource uses a book that is on the Florida Department of Education's reading list. This book is not provided with this resource.

Type: Lesson Plan

Nation for Representation: Part 1:

In this integrated lesson, students will use digital research skills to identify and analyze different types of government including representative vs. other types of government.  Students will complete a graphic organizer. This lesson is part one of a multi-part lesson that will end with a culminating project that identifies characteristics of a representative government using digital resources. 

 

Type: Lesson Plan

Declaration of Independence thru the Eyes of a Child:

In this lesson plan, students will be able to break down the Declaration of Independence and understand the reasons colonists needed to break away from England and the main reasons leading up to the American Revolution.

Type: Lesson Plan

Let's Connect - Declaration of Independence and Events leading up to it:

In this lesson plan, students will learn about important events leading up to the writing of the Declaration of Independence and then make the connection between those events and the grievances found in the Declaration of Independence. 

Type: Lesson Plan

The Articles of Confederation:

The purpose of this lesson is for students to identify the strengths and weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation while using primary and secondary sources that they will compare and contrast. The students will use the sources to explain through writing the strengths and weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation. The students will also identify and locate the original thirteen colonies.

Type: Lesson Plan

Bill of Rights Visual and Manipulatives :

Students will use visuals to match descriptions of the Bill of Rights. Students will reflect on the impact of the Bill of Rights in a writing prompt. 

Type: Lesson Plan

Student Inquiry: How did the U.S. Constitution Influence the Florida Constitution?:

In this inquiry lesson, students will investigate using compelling and supporting questions, the impact of the U.S. Constitution on the Florida Constitution. The method of student-group demonstrations of learning is suggested, but flexible. 

Type: Lesson Plan

Robot Dogs and the Declaration of Independence:

In this lesson plan, students will recognize that the Declaration of Independence affirms that every American has certain unalienable rights. Students will identify different sections, principles, and grievances in the Declaration and will analyze why the assertion of these rights is fundamental to successful governance.

Type: Lesson Plan

The Seal, Bill, Song, and Proclamation: Recognizing Symbols of the United States :

In this lesson plan, students will explain how the Great Seal, Bill of Rights, Star-Spangled Banner, and Emancipation Proclamation represent the United States. Students will create their own symbols to represent themselves.

Type: Lesson Plan

Rights and Liberties in the Bill of Rights:

In this lesson, students will identify the rights protected by each of the first ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution. They will analyze the importance of protections for individual liberties and limitations on the power of government. They will then determine the weight of importance of the various rights and liberties protected by the Bill of Rights. 

Type: Lesson Plan

Why Have a Bill of Rights?:

In this lesson, students will learn who the Federalists and Anti-Federalists were before examining quotes, dialogue, and scenarios to evaluate the viewpoints of each.

Type: Lesson Plan

The Articles of Confederation:

In this lesson, students will learn about the Articles of Confederation and identify it as the first constitution of the United States. Students will analyze the weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation and learn how these weaknesses led to problems. Students will then discover how the issues were addressed in the U.S. Constitution.

Type: Lesson Plan

Bill of Rights Billboard:

This MEA will deepen students' knowledge of the Bill of Rights through collaborative problem solving. Students are required to analyze data in order to recommend three Amendments to celebrate during a community festival.  They will perform operations with fractions and mixed numbers to recommend advertising options for the festival within a budget.

Type: Lesson Plan

Original Student Tutorials

The U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights:

Learn about the history and background of the U.S. Constitution and how the Constitution and Bill of Rights safeguards our rights and liberties in this interactive tutorial. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Meet the Declaration of Independence:

Learn about important historical documents that influenced political concepts in the United States and that the Declaration of Independence affirms all citizens have certain unalienable rights with this interactive tutorial. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Presentation/Slideshow

Slideshow: Meet the Declaration of Independence:

This PowerPoint slideshow is designed to support teachers in delivering direct instruction on the Declaration of Independence and the unalienable rights granted to all citizens. The accompanying guided notes can be completed by students during instruction.

Type: Presentation/Slideshow

Teaching Idea

Grade 5 Civics Family Guide: Standard 1:

This Grade 5 Civics Family Guide provides some ideas and activities to support civics education when at home, out and about, and in the community. The activities provided align to the civics learning benchmarks within Standard 1 at this grade level.

Type: Teaching Idea

Video/Audio/Animations

Portraits in Patriotism - Lily Tang Williams: Elementary School:

Lily Tang Williams was born in communist China during Mao Zedong’s rule. She witnessed Mao’s Cultural Revolution first hand as she was growing up. She was a member of the Young Pioneers and the Red Guard, but yearned to come to the United States to learn about and live in a democracy. In 1988, she was able to come to the United States for schooling and was granted asylum status.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Portraits in Patriotism - Luis Martínez Fernández: Elementary:

Luis Martínez-Fernández was born at the beginning of the Cuban Revolution. Dr. Martínez-Fernández immigrated to the United States with his family when he was 2 years old after the Bay of Pigs Invasion. His family moved to Lima, Peru after his father was offered employment there. Dr. Martínez-Fernández’s family left Peru after the President of Peru was ousted from power. The new government in Peru concerned Dr. Martínez-Fernández’s father and the family moved to Puerto Rico where they become U.S. Citizens. Dr. Martínez-Fernández moved to the U.S. after graduation from The University of Puerto Rico. He is a Professor of History, an author, and is civically engaged through his nationally syndicated column.

Type: Video/Audio/Animation

Student Resources

Vetted resources students can use to learn the concepts and skills in this topic.

Original Student Tutorials

The U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights:

Learn about the history and background of the U.S. Constitution and how the Constitution and Bill of Rights safeguards our rights and liberties in this interactive tutorial. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Meet the Declaration of Independence:

Learn about important historical documents that influenced political concepts in the United States and that the Declaration of Independence affirms all citizens have certain unalienable rights with this interactive tutorial. 

Type: Original Student Tutorial

Parent Resources

Vetted resources caregivers can use to help students learn the concepts and skills in this topic.

Teaching Idea

Grade 5 Civics Family Guide: Standard 1:

This Grade 5 Civics Family Guide provides some ideas and activities to support civics education when at home, out and about, and in the community. The activities provided align to the civics learning benchmarks within Standard 1 at this grade level.

Type: Teaching Idea