Citizenship



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7th-Citizenship


GRADES 7-9

Overview

Students in Grades 7, 8, and 9 can be characterized as learners who are enthusiastic, impressionable, and independent. They are developing an interest in personal, national, and global issues and are beginning to see clearer connections between themselves and people and events around the world.


In the seventh grade, students express curiosity about how society works and the role they play in their community and the world. They question the balance and differences between rights and responsibilities. They are interested in distant places, their locations, and environments. These issues and others are explored in two one-semester courses in Grade 7. The Citizenship course addresses democracy; liberty; law; personal economics; and local, state, and national civic responsibility. The Geography course addresses physical geography of the world and cultural geography of the Eastern Hemisphere.
In Grades 8 and 9, students are engaged in a two-year sequence of courses involving the chronological history of the world. These courses incorporate the strands of economics, geography, history, and political science with an emphasis on the history and geography strands. The content of these courses emphasizes the knowledge and skills necessary for developing a geographic perspective of the world and its people and events. Geography is a strong component of the content for these grades, as students are required to become knowledgeable about the development and diffusion of civilization. Students use geographic tools and technologies to pose and answer questions about spatial distribution and patterns on Earth, use mental maps to answer questions, and compare and map dominant land-use patterns.
Effective teachers utilize a variety of classroom instructional techniques and assessment strategies. The classroom environment, activities, assignments, and assessments foster the skills of acquiring information and manipulating data; developing and presenting policies, arguments, and stories; constructing new knowledge; and participating in groups. Technology is used as a component of instruction to enable students to compete in a rapidly changing world. Internet access, computer software, videos, and television programs provide opportunities for students to explore historical as well as geographic concepts. Because understanding contemporary events and relating them to the past are essential to any social studies course, current events is a vital component of the social studies content for Grades 7 through 9.

SEVENTH GRADE

Citizenship

Students in the seventh grade can be characterized as inquisitive, enthusiastic, and impressionable learners. They are beginning to ask questions about society and the world around them as they expand their ability to analyze and evaluate relationships between ideals and practices. Students confront such questions as: What is civic participation and how can I be involved? What are my rights and responsibilities? How do I become a responsible citizen? What is my role as a citizen in the community and nation and as a member of the world community? How can I make a positive difference?


The goal of education in civics and government is informed, responsible participation in political life by competent citizens committed to the fundamental values and principles of the constitutional democracy which established the republic of the United States of America. These standards incorporate the strands of economics, geography, history, and political science with an obvious emphasis on political science. They address representative democracy, law, personal economics, and civic responsibility. Unique to this course is the opportunity for students to actively participate in a community-based, civic-education project.
Incorporating numerous instructional classroom techniques provides students with an important variety of formats and strategies, including role-playing, debates, and hands-on situational activities. Students at this age are able to assume more responsibilities in their family, school, and community roles. To address this, students are given opportunities to apply civic knowledge to problem-based learning situations in the community and to other activities that foster increased personal responsibility.
SEVENTH GRADE

Citizenship

Students will:


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1. Describe influences of ancient Greece, the Magna Carta, and the Mayflower Compact on the government of the United States.


























    • Identifying essential characteristics of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights as the foundation of the government of the United States

    • Describing the influence of John Locke

    • Explaining essential characteristics of the political system of the United States

Examples: organization and functions of political parties, process of selecting political leaders


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2. Compare the government of the United States with other governmental systems.












Examples: monarchy, limited monarchy, oligarchy, dictatorship, theocracy, pure democracy




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3. Describe essential characteristics of state and local governments in the United States.













    • Identifying major offices and officeholders of state and local governments

    • Explaining the historical background of the 1901 Constitution of Alabama and its impact on state and local governments Error: Reference source not found

Example: lack of home rule

    • Describing how local and state governments are funded




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4. Compare duties and functions of members of legislative, executive, and judicial branches of local, state, and national governments.














    • Identifying geographic and political districts of legislative, executive, and judicial branches of national, state, and local governments

    • Describing the organization and jurisdiction of courts within the judicial system of the United States at local, state, and national levels

    • Explaining concepts of separation of powers and checks and balances among the three branches of state and national governments



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5. Explain the importance of juvenile, adult, civil, and criminal laws within the judicial system of the United States.














    • Explaining rights of citizens under the Constitution

Examples: due process, right to keep and bear arms, private property right, right to privacy, equal protection, religious expression, habeas corpus

    • Explaining what is meant by the term rule of law

    • Understanding consequences of breaking the law

    • Contrasting juvenile and adult laws and their respective court systems

    • Identifying laws that most affect youth at home, school, and in the community




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6. Describe how people organize economic systems for the production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services to address the basic economic questions of which goods and services will be produced, how they will be produced, and who will consume them.

























    • Using economic concepts to explain historical and current developments and issues in global, national, or local contexts

Example: increase in oil prices resulting from supply and demand

    • Analyzing the distribution of urban areas to determine how they are linked together

Example: using distribution maps to examine population flows among cities, suburbs, and small towns


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7. Describe the relationship between the consumer and the marketplace in the economy of the United States regarding scarcity, opportunity cost, trade-off decision making, characteristics of a market economy, and supply and demand.

























    • Describing the influence of the stock market upon individuals and the economy

    • Analyzing distribution and production maps to determine patterns of supply and demand

    • Describing effects of government policies on the free market

    • Identifying laws protecting rights of consumers and avenues of recourse when those rights are violated




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8. Apply principles of money management to the preparation of a personal budget that addresses housing, transportation, food, clothing, medical expenses, and insurance as well as checking and savings accounts, loans, investments, credit, and comparison shopping.

























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9. Identify individual and civic responsibilities of citizens of the United States.











Examples: individual—respect for rights of others, self-discipline, negotiation, compromise;


civic—respect for the law, patriotism, participation in the political process


    • Describing differences in rights, privileges, duties, and responsibilities between citizens and noncitizens

    • Explaining how United States citizenship is acquired

    • Interpreting an immigration map

    • Identifying character traits that are beneficial to individuals and to the republic of the United States

Examples: honesty, courage, compassion, civility


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10. Describe changes in social and economic conditions in the United States during the twentieth and twenty-first centuries.











Examples: social—family values, peer pressures, educational opportunities;


economic—career opportunities, disposable income


    • Describing the impact of print and electronic media and the Internet on the American way of life

Examples: fashion trends, consumer spending, increased debt, speed of communication, changes in language and social skills


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11. Describe examples of conflict, cooperation, and interdependence of groups, societies, and nations, using past and current events.














    • Tracing the political and social impact of the modern Civil Rights Movement from 1954 to the present, including Alabama’s role Error: Reference source not found




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12. Explain how the United States can be improved by individual and collective participation and by public service.
























    • Identifying options for civic and community action

Examples: investigating the feasibility of a specific solution to a traffic problem, developing a plan for the construction of a subdivision, using maps to make and justify decisions about the best location for facilities
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