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Intermediate Key Ideas
Standard 1 Standard 2 Standard 3 Standard 4 Standard 5


Standard 5: Civics, Citizenship, and Government  Intermediate Grades 5-8 S

Students will use a variety of intellectual skills to demonstrate their understanding of the necessity for establishing governments; the governmental system of the U.S. and other nations; the U.S. Constitution; the basic civic values of American constitutional democracy; and the roles, rights, and responsibilities of citizenship, including avenues of participation

Key Idea 1:  The study of civics, citizenship, and government involves learning about political systems; the purposes of government and civic life; and the differing assumptions held by people across time and place regarding power, authority, governance, and law. (Adapted from The National Standards for Civics and Government, 1994)
Performance Indicators:  This is evident when students 

·          analyze how the values of a nation affect the guarantee of human rights and make provisions for human needs

·          consider the nature and evolution of constitutional democracies

·          explore the rights of citizens in other parts of the hemisphere and determine how they are similar to and different from the rights of American citizens

·          analyze the sources of a nation’s values as embodied in its constitution, statutes, and important court cases

Key Idea 2:  The state and federal governments established by the Constitutions of the United States and the State of New York embody basic civic values (such as justice, honesty, self-discipline, due process, equality, majority rule with respect for minority rights, and respect for self, others, and property), principles, and practices and establish a system of shared and limited government. (Adapted from The National Standards for Civics and Government, 1994
Performance Indicators:  This is evident when students

·          understand how civic values reflected in United States and New York State Constitutions have been implemented through laws and practices

·          understand that the New York State Constitution, along with a number of other documents, served as a model for the development of the United States Constitution

·          compare and contrast the development and evolution of the constitutions of the United States and New York State

·          define federalism and describe the powers granted the the national and state governments by the United States Constitution

·          value the principles, ideals, and core values of the American democratic system based upon the premises of human dignity, liberty, justice, and equality

·          understand how the United States and New York State Constitutions support majority rule but also protect the rights of the minority

Key Idea 3:  Central to civics and citizenship is an understanding of the roles of the citizen within American constitutional democracy and the scope of a citizen’s rights and responsibilities.
Performance Indicators:  This is evident when students

·          explain what citizenship means in a democratic society, how citizenship is defined in the Constitution and other laws of the land, and how the definition of citizenship has changed in the United States and New York State over time

·          understand that the American legal and political systems guarantee and protect the rights of citizens and assume that citizens will hold and exercise certain civic values and fulfill certain civic responsibilities

·          discuss the role of an informed citizen in today’s changing world

·          explain how Americans are citizens of their states and of the United States

Key Idea 4:  The study of civics and citizenship requires the ability to probe ideas and assumptions, ask and answer analytical questions, take a skeptical attitude toward questionable arguments, evaluate evidence, formulate rational conclusions, and develop and refine participatory skills.
Performance Indicators:  This is evident when students

·          respect the rights of others in discussions and classroom debates regardless of whether or not one agrees with their viewpoint

·          explain the role that civility plays in promoting effective citizenship in preserving democracy

·          articipate in negotiation and compromise to resolve classroom, school, and community disagreements and problems