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A detailed lesson plan on Government, the Declaration of Independence, and the Bill of Rights

Subject:

Social Studies  

Grades:

3, 4, 5, 6  

Title – Government
By – Michelle Eaton
**Note – This lesson plan uses some worksheets that are not available, however, much of the lesson plan can be completed without the worksheets.
From Erma Siegel Elementary
Murfreesboro, TN
Subject – Social Studies
Grade Level – Third
Government Unit – Grade 3-6

Unit Outline:
Topic
Declaration of Independence & U.S. Constitution – Bill of Rights
Understanding
Review the history of the Declaration of Independence & Constitution.
Understand citizens’ rights by researching the Constitution’s “Bill of Rights.”
Understand the democratic process.

Topic
Local Government
Understanding
Introduce students to the local government structure – City Council and Mayor and the roles they play.
Understand other people in power positions (Police Chief, Fire Dept. Chief, Health & Social Services).
Community Services Provided by Dept. of Public Works, Dept. of Public Utilities, Dept. of Parks and Recreation.
Actively participate in local government by having a simulated classroom election & handling a community problem.

Topic
State Government
Understanding
The structure of the State Government
Review the capitals of the U.S.
Familiarize with Tennessee’s two Senators and Representatives

Topic
National Government
Understanding
Structure of our National Government
Executive, Judicial, Legislative Branch
Tour the White House

Overview of Unit
Students will review the history of our country’s independence, and study the Bill of Rights to gain a better understanding of their basic rights and freedom as American citizens in a democratic society. After discussing the structure of the Community Government the class will research the names of their local mayor and members of the city council by utilizing the local web page provided by the Chamber of Commerce. The class will have a Mayoral/City Council election and will actively handle a community problem to better understand other people in power positions (Police Chief, Fire Dept. Chief, Health & Social Services). Students will review the structure of the State Government. They will determine Tennessee’s two senators and district representative through internet research. Students will research other state capitals with internet activity. Examine the structure and functions of the United States national government. Enable students to be more informed about where the President lives and works by visiting the White House via the internet.

Day One
Objectives
1. Introduce the unit titled, “United States Government”
2. Students will review the history of our independence, and analyze the Bill of Rights to gain a better understanding of their basic rights and freedoms an American citizen.
Activity
Material: worksheet “Know Your Rights”
internet access
Instructions: Find a copy of the Bill of Rights on the internet and complete the internet guided activity worksheet of the ten amendments that provide you with basic rights and freedom.

Day Two
Objectives
1. Introduce the structure of local government and other positions utilized by the government and community.
Review the following terms:
mayor
city council members
Police Chief,
Fire Dept. Chief
Health & Social Services
Terms: appoint, approve, elect

Activity
Material: worksheet Flow Chart – “Community Government”
Instructions: After discussing the structure of the local government mastery will be acknowledged with the students completing the flowchart worksheet as a group activity.

2. The students will identify their local mayor/city council.
Activity
Material: worksheet “Murfreesboro Community Government”
internet access
Instructions: Using the internet guided worksheet and web site students will write down the name of their mayor and members of the city council and other services provided by the community.

Day Three
Objectives
1. Understanding of services provided from community taxes. Local tax usage for services: Dept. Public Works, Dept. of Public Utilities, Dept. of Parks & Recreation
Activity
Material: worksheet “Community Services”.
Instructions: Discuss the function of the following departments funded by local taxes. Access understanding with worksheet activity.

Day Four & Five
Objectives
1. Actively participate in local government by having a simulated classroom election & handling a community problem.
Activity
The class will hold a simulated community government election.
After the election has taken place in the classroom, a city council meeting will convene. At this time the council will be presented with a problem to solve. The problem: Tigger the Tiger has escaped from the local Children’s Discovery House. The local citizens and animal rights groups are upset. Teacher will assign positions to the students who are not apart of the council ( City Clerk, two CCTA (Concerned Citizens of the Treatment of Animals) members, Social Director, Zookeeper, Vet, Police Chief, TV Reporters, Newspaper Reporter, Members of the local Hunters Lodge, and Civic League Members.
The City Council listens actively to all sides of the issue as to how Tigger the Tiger can be taken off city streets. Each group is given the opportunity to speak before the mayor and council as to how to safely solve this problem.

Day Six
Objectives
1. The students will study the structure of the state government, naming their governor, two senators, and district representative.
2. Students will have an understanding of the term “capital” in the since that this is were the state government is housed and that all 50 states have a capital.
3. Students will explore the other capitals of the fifty states.
Activity
Material:
internet access
URL: http://congress.org
Instructions: Students will complete internet guided activity worksheet naming the governor, two senators, and district representative. They will finish lesson with a game “Capitals of the United States”.

Day Seven
Objectives
1. Students will observe the structure of the National Government.
Activity
Discuss the following branches of government: Executive, Legislative, & Judicial. Discuss if they are elected or appointed and the job of each group.
Material:
worksheet – “Branches of the National Government”
Instructions: After discussing the three branches of the national government, student understanding will be observed with group worksheet activity.

Day Eight
Objectives
1. Students will be more informed about where the President lives and works by visiting the White House via the internet.
Activity
Material: worksheet – “Tour the White House”
Access to internet
URL: http://www.whitehouse.gov/ 
Instruction: Students will complete internet guided worksheet activity.

Day Nine
Objectives
1. Students will incorporate the knowledge of the three separate parts to our government: local, state, and national by complete a teacher made multiple choice and short answer exam.

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