Social Studies Worksheets and Study Guides Seventh Grade. The United States Constitution

The resources above correspond to the standards listed below:

U.S. National Standards

N.NCSS. National Curriculum Standards for Social Studies (NCSS)
NCSS.10. CIVIC IDEALS AND PRACTICES
SOCIAL STUDIES PROGRAMS SHOULD INCLUDE EXPERIENCES THAT PROVIDE FOR THE STUDY OF THE IDEALS, PRINCIPLES, AND PRACTICES OF CITIZENSHIP IN A DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC.
10.1. KNOWLEDGE - Learners will understand:
10.1.2. Concepts and ideals such as: individual dignity, liberty, justice, equality, individual rights, responsibility, majority and minority rights, and civil dissent.
10.1.3. Key practices involving the rights and responsibilities of citizenship and the exercise of citizenship (e.g., respecting the rule of law and due process, voting, serving on a jury, researching issues, making informed judgments, expressing views on issues, and collaborating with others to take civic action).
10.1.5. Key documents and excerpts from key sources that define and support democratic ideals and practices (e.g., the U.S. Declaration of Independence, the U.S. Constitution, the Gettysburg Address, the Letter from Birmingham Jail; and international documents such as the Declaration of the Rights of Man, and the Universal Declaration of the Rights of Children).
10.1.6. The origins and function of major institutions and practices developed to support democratic ideals and practices.
NCSS.2. TIME, CONTINUITY, AND CHANGE
SOCIAL STUDIES PROGRAMS SHOULD INCLUDE EXPERIENCES THAT PROVIDE FOR THE STUDY OF THE PAST AND ITS LEGACY.
2.1. KNOWLEDGE - Learners will understand:
2.1.8. The history of democratic ideals and principles, and how they are represented in documents, artifacts and symbols.
NCSS.6. POWER, AUTHORITY, AND GOVERNANCE
SOCIAL STUDIES PROGRAMS SHOULD INCLUDE EXPERIENCES THAT PROVIDE FOR THE STUDY OF HOW PEOPLE CREATE, INTERACT WITH, AND CHANGE STRUCTURES OF POWER, AUTHORITY, AND GOVERNANCE.
6.1. KNOWLEDGE - Learners will understand:
6.1.1. Rights are guaranteed in the U.S. Constitution, the supreme law of the land.
6.1.2. Fundamental ideas that are the foundation of American constitutional democracy (including those of the U.S. Constitution, popular sovereignty, the rule of law, separation of powers, checks and balances, minority rights, the separation of church and state, and Federalism).
6.1.3. Fundamental values of constitutional democracy (e.g., the common good, liberty, justice, equality, and individual dignity).
N.NSCG. National Standards for Civics and Government (NSCG)
I.A. What are civic life, politics, and government? What is civic life? What is politics? What is government? Why are government and politics necessary? What purposes should government serve?
I.A.2. Necessity and purposes of government. Students should be able to evaluate, take, and defend positions on why government is necessary and the purposes government should serve. To achieve this standard, students should be able to
I.A.2.2. Evaluate competing ideas about the purposes government should serve, e.g.,
I.A.2.2.f. Promoting a particular religion
I.C. What are civic life, politics, and government? What are the nature and purposes of constitutions?
I.C.1. Concepts of ''constitution.'' Students should be able to explain alternative uses of the term constitution'' and to distinguish between governments with a constitution and a constitutional government. To achieve this standard, students should be able to
I.C.1.1. Distinguish among the following uses of the term constitution
I.C.1.1.b. Constitution as a document
I.C.1.1.c. Constitution as a higher law limiting the powers of government, i.e., a constitutional or limited government
I.C.1.3. Identify historical and contemporary nations with constitutions that in reality do limit power, e.g., United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Japan, Botswana, Chile
I.C.2. Purposes and uses of constitutions. Students should be able to explain the various purposes constitutions serve. To achieve this standard, students should be able to
I.C.2.1. Explain how constitutions
I.C.2.1.a. Set forth the purposes of government
I.C.2.1.b. Describe the way a government is organized and how power is allocated
I.C.2.1.c. Define the relationship between a people and their government
I.C.2.3. Describe historical and contemporary examples of how constitutions have been used to protect individual rights and promote the common good, e.g., United States Constitution ''Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, (First Amendment) ...,'' ''The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied...on account of sex (Nineteenth Amendment).''
II.A. What are the foundations of the American political system? What is the American idea of constitutional government?
II.A.1. The American idea of constitutional government. Students should be able to explain the essential ideas of American constitutional government. To achieve this standard, students should be able to
II.A.1.1. Explain essential ideas of American constitutional government as expressed in the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and other writings, e.g.,
II.A.1.1.b. The Constitution is a higher law that authorizes a government of limited powers
II.A.1.1.c. The purposes of government, as stated in the Preamble to the Constitution, are to form a more perfect union; establish justice; insure domestic tranquility; provide for the common defense; promote the general welfare; secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity
II.A.1.2. Explain how the following provisions of the United States Constitution give government the power it needs to fulfill the purposes for which it was established
II.A.1.2.a. Delegated or enumerated powers, e.g., to lay and collect taxes, to make treaties, to decide cases and controversies between two or more states (Articles I, II & III)
II.A.1.2.b. The general welfare provision (Article I, Section 8)
II.A.1.2.c. The necessary and proper clause (Article I, Section 8, Clause 18)
II.A.1.3. Explain the means of limiting the powers of government under the United States Constitution
II.A.1.3.c. Bill of Rights
II.A.1.4. Explain how specific provisions of the United States Constitution, including the Bill of Rights, limit the powers of government in order to protect the rights of individuals, e.g., habeas corpus; trial by jury; ex post facto; freedom of religion, speech, press, and assembly; equal protection of the law; due process of law; right to counsel
II.A.1.5. Evaluate, take, and defend positions on current issues involving constitutional protection of individual rights, such as
II.A.1.5.b. Separation of church and state, e.g., school vouchers, prayer in public schools
II.A.1.5.d. Search and seizure, e.g., warrantless searches
II.B. What are the foundations of the American political system? What are the distinctive characteristics of American society?
II.B.1. Distinctive characteristics of American society. Students should be able to identify and explain the importance of historical experience and geographic, social, and economic factors that have helped to shape American society. To achieve this standard, students should be able to
II.B.1.1. Explain important factors that have helped shape American society
II.B.1.1.b. Religious freedom
II.C. What are the foundations of the American political system? What is American political culture?
II.C.1. American identity. Students should be able to explain the importance of shared political values and principles to American society. To achieve this standard, students should be able to
II.C.1.2. Identify basic values and principles Americans share as set forth in such documents as the Declaration of Independence, the United States Constitution, the Gettysburg Address
II.C.2. The character of American political conflict. Students should be able to describe the character of American political conflict and explain factors that usually prevent violence or that lower its intensity. To achieve this standard, students should be able to
II.C.2.1. Describe political conflict in the United States both historically and at present, such as conflict about
II.C.2.1.d. Extending the franchise
II.C.2.1.f. The role of religion in American public life
II.C.2.2. Explain some of the reasons why political conflict in the United States, with notable exceptions such as the Civil War, labor unrest, civil rights struggles, and the opposition to the war in Vietnam generally has been less divisive than in many other nations. These include
II.C.2.2.a. A shared respect for the Constitution and its principles
II.D. What are the foundations of the American political system? What values and principles are basic to American constitutional democracy?
II.D.1. Fundamental values and principles. Students should be able to explain the meaning and importance of the fundamental values and principles of American constitutional democracy. To achieve this standard, students should be able to
II.D.1.1. Identify fundamental values and principles as expressed in
II.D.1.1.a. Basic documents, e.g., Declaration of Independence and United States Constitution
II.D.1.1.b. Significant political speeches and writings, e.g., The Federalist, Washington's Farewell Address, Lincoln's Gettysburg Address, King's ''I Have a Dream'' speech
II.D.1.3. Explain the meaning and importance of the following fundamental principles of American constitutional democracy
II.D.1.3.a. Popular sovereignty--the concept that ultimate political authority rests with the people who create and can alter or abolish governments
II.D.1.3.b. Constitutional government which includes the rule of law; representative institutions; shared powers; checks and balances; individual rights; separation of church and state; federalism; civilian control of the military
II.D.2. Conflicts among values and principles in American political and social life. Students should be able to evaluate, take, and defend positions on issues in which fundamental values and principles are in conflict. To achieve this standard, students should be able to
II.D.2.1. Describe conflicts among fundamental values and principles and give historical and contemporary examples of these conflicts, such as
II.D.2.1.a. Conflicts between liberty and equality, e.g., liberty to exclude others from private clubs and the right of individuals to be treated equally
II.D.3. Disparities between ideals and reality in American political and social life. Students should be able to evaluate, take, and defend positions on issues concerning ways and means to reduce disparities between American ideals and realities. To achieve this standard, students should be able to
II.D.3.4. Describe historical and contemporary efforts to reduce discrepancies between ideals and the reality of American public life, e.g., abolition, suffrage, civil rights, and environmental protection movements
III.A. How does the government established by the constitution embody the purposes, values, and principles of American democracy? How are power and responsibility distributed, shared, and limited in the government established by the United States Constitution?
III.A.1. Distributing, sharing, and limiting powers of the national government. Students should be able to explain how the powers of the national government are distributed, shared, and limited. To achieve this standard, students should be able to
III.A.1.1. Explain how the three opening words of the Preamble to the Constitution, ''We the People...,'' embody the principle of the people as sovereign--the ultimate source of authority
III.A.2. Sharing of powers between the national and state governments. Students should be able to explain how and why powers are distributed and shared between national and state governments in the federal system. To achieve this standard, students should be able to
III.A.2.5. Explain how and why the United States Constitution provides that laws of the national government and treaties are the supreme law of the land
III.B. How does the government established by the constitution embody the purposes, values, and principles of American democracy? What does the national government do?
III.B.2. Financing government through taxation. Students should be able to explain the necessity of taxes and the purposes for which taxes are used. To achieve this standard, students should be able to
III.B.2.2. Identify provisions of the United States Constitution that authorize the national government to collect taxes, i.e., Article One, Sections 7 and 8; Sixteenth Amendment
III.C. How does the government established by the constitution embody the purposes, values, and principles of American democracy? How are state and local governments organized and what do they do?
III.C.1. State governments. Students should be able to explain why states have constitutions, their purposes, and the relationship of state constitutions to the federal constitution. To achieve this standard, students should be able to
III.C.1.3. Identify and explain the basic similarities and differences between their state constitution and the United States Constitution
III.C.1.4. Explain why state constitutions and state governments cannot violate the United States Constitution
III.E. How does the government established by the constitution embody the purposes, values, and principles of American democracy? What is the place of law in the American constitutional system?
III.E.3. Judicial protection of the rights of individuals. Students should be able to evaluate, take, and defend positions on current issues regarding judicial protection of individual rights. To achieve this standard, students should be able to
III.E.3.1. Explain the basic concept of due process of law, i.e., government must use fair procedures to gather information and make decisions in order to protect the rights of individuals and the interests of society
III.E.3.2. Explain the importance to individuals and to society of major due process protections
III.E.3.2.a. Habeas corpus
III.E.3.2.b. Presumption of innocence
III.E.3.2.c. Fair notice
III.E.3.2.d. Impartial tribunal
III.E.3.2.e. Speedy and public trials
III.E.3.2.f. Right to counsel
III.E.3.2.g. Trial by jury
III.E.3.2.h. Right against self-incrimination
III.E.3.2.i. Protection against double jeopardy
III.E.3.2.j. Right of appeal
III.E.3.3. Explain why due process rights in administrative and legislative procedures are essential for the protection of individual rights and the maintenance of limited government, e.g., the right to adequate notice of a hearing that may affect one's interests, the right to counsel in legislative hearings
IV.B. What is the relationship of the United States to other nations and to world affairs? How has the United States influenced other nations and how have other nations influenced American politics and society?
IV.B.1. Impact of the American concept of democracy and individual rights on the world. Students should be able to describe the influence of American political ideas on other nations. To achieve this standard, students should be able to
IV.B.1.1. Describe the impact on other nations of the American Revolution and of the values and principles expressed in the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution, including the Bill of Rights
V.B. What are the roles of the citizen in American democracy? What are the rights of citizens?
V.B.1. Personal rights. Students should be able to evaluate, take, and defend positions on issues involving personal rights. To achieve this standard, students should be able to
V.B.1.2. Identify the major documentary sources of personal rights, e.g., Declaration of Independence, United States Constitution, including the Bill of Rights, state constitutions
V.B.1.3. Explain the importance to the individual and to society of such personal rights as
V.B.1.3.a. Freedom of conscience and religion
V.B.2. Political rights. Students should be able to evaluate, take, and defend positions on issues involving political rights. To achieve this standard, students should be able to
V.B.2.1. Identify political rights, e.g., the right to vote, petition, assembly, freedom of press
V.B.2.2. Explain the meaning of political rights as distinguished from personal rights, e.g., the right of free speech for political discussion as distinct from the right of free speech to express personal tastes and interests, the right to register to vote as distinct from the right to live where one chooses
V.B.2.3. Identify major statements of political rights in documents such as the Declaration of Independence, United States Constitution, including the Bill of Rights, state constitutions, and civil rights legislation
V.B.2.4. Explain the importance to the individual and society of such political rights as
V.B.2.4.a. Freedom of speech, press, assembly, and petition
V.B.2.5. Identify and evaluate contemporary issues that involve political rights, e.g., hate speech, fair trial, free press
V.B.3. Economic rights. Students should be able to evaluate, take, and defend positions on issues involving economic rights. To achieve this standard, students should be able to
V.B.3.2. Identify statements of economic rights in the United States Constitution, e.g., requirement of just compensation, contracts, copyright, patents
V.B.4. Scope and limits of rights. Students should be able to evaluate, take, and defend positions on issues regarding the proper scope and limits of rights. To achieve this standard, students should be able to
V.B.4.1. Explain what is meant by the ''scope and limits'' of a right, e.g., the scope of one's right to free speech in the United States is extensive and protects almost all forms of political expression. The right to free speech, however, can be limited if and when that speech seriously harms or endangers others
V.B.4.4. Identify and evaluate positions on a contemporary conflict between rights, e.g., right to a fair trial and right to a free press, right to privacy and right to freedom of expression

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