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Government (8th Grade)
submitted by Marilyn Washington
Lake Elementary-St. Amant, Louisiana
1. The learner will be able to analyze the purposes of government.
2. The learner will be able to examine or assess the importance of citizenship to the individual or to society at large (e.g., the importance of voting).
3. The learner will be able to explain the structure and functions of the three branches of the federal government..
4. The learner will be able to cite the roles/duties, qualifications, and terms of office for key elected and appointed officials.
5. The learner will be able to explain the structure and functions of state and local governments.
6.The learner will be able to explain the two-party system and examine the role of political
parties, including third parties, in the election process
7. The learner will be able to evaluate the influences of media on public
opinion in American politics.
8.The learner will be able to explain historical or contemporary roles of special interest groups
and associations in U. S. politics (e.g., NAACP, ACLU, AARP. NRA)
1. Listen and participate in the lecture The purpose of government. (10)*
1 Make vocabulary flashcards with the following words: government, jury, citizen, political
alliance, constitution, executive branch, veto, impeachment, legislative branch, census,
caucus, constituent, lobbying, judicial branch, civil laws. (15)
1 Make a crossword puzzle using the above vocabulary words (15).
1 Write two paragraphs using the above vocabulary words to describe the government. (15)
1 Answer the questions at the end of chapter 4. Understanding the Facts 1-12 (10)
1 Write a thirty second speech explaining, why the right to vote is or is not important. Go
over your speech with at least 1 classmate to make corrections. Be prepared to defend your
opinion in a class debate. (10)
1 Create a commercial that encourages other to go out and vote. (video, written, poster)
1 Worksheets-4-----(5 pts. Each)
1 List reasons why you believe we have never had a woman president of the United States.
Be prepared to discuss. (10)
1 Create a poster that displays and explains the 3 branches of government. (10)
1 Create a poster or power point presentation that identifies your local government
officials. Include their roles and responsibilities. (20)
1 Create a power point presentation or poster that describes the governor of Louisiana and
his cabinet. Explain their roles and responsibilities. (25)
1 Create a power point presentation or poster that describes the president of the United
States and his Cabinet. Explain their roles and responsibilities. (25)
1 Interview 5 people in your community and find out what they consider to be the most
important issues of the present campaigns. Compile your results and write a one page essay
that discusses your results. (25)
1 Interview a local candidate (presently holding office). (15)
16. Watch TV for one hour, note the number of campaign commercials. Compare and
contrast two of the commercials. Be prepared to discuss. (10)
17. Search the daily or weekly newspaper, notice the number of campaign advertisements.
Compare and contrast two of the advertisements. Be prepared to discuss the
1 Collect three political cartoons from the newspaper. Write a brief interpretation of each
1 Draw a political cartoon about a leading local, state or national politician or political
1 Find and summarize 6 news articles, two on local government, two on state government
and two on federal. government (10)
1 Create a game based on facts about government (10)
1 Participate in the discussion, How does media influence American Politics? (10)
1 Name and describe major and minor political parties in America. What roles do they play
in the election process? (10)
B. Level--25 points each
1 On your eighteenth birthday, you will be eligible to run for the state legislature. Prepare
the campaign speech you would give if you decided to do this. Emphasize reasons why your
age would be an advantage. Your speech should be 1-2 minutes.
1 Using the internet, library books or other resources, compare and contrast your parish
government with a surrounding parish. Write your report or be prepared to give it as a
1 Create a booklet that compares and contrast the present governor with the governor 100
1 Edwin Edwards was one of the most controversial governors ever. Write a report (in your own words) that describes his life during and after his terms as Governor of Louisiana.
1 Create a timeline that shows the governors of Louisiana and at least one of their major
contributions. Include at least 15 governors. Describe the governor that you think made the
greatest contribution to Louisiana.
1 Create a timeline that describes at least 15 presidents of the United States and at least one
of their major contributions.
1 Collect articles from the daily newspaper and make a booklet on 2 candidates. Choose no
more than 2 candidates. Describe their daily routines. Find out how much money is being
spent on their campaign. Describe the role of their family in the campaign? What did they
do before running for office? What plan do they have to help the environment? What is
their stand on education?
1 Part of a legislator's job is to listen to his or her constituents. Identify an issue that is of
concern to the people in your district. Write a letter to your state senator or representative
expressing your opinion. Letter must be typed.
1 Create a test using your vocabulary words, questions from the chapter, local government
officials and their roles and responsibilities. (Include only multiple choice questions, short
answer questions, and discussion questions) (50)
1 Videotape two candidates running for the same office. Discuss their campaign and what
they hope to accomplish if they get the job. Write a report and explain your findings.
Explain what you would do if you were running for the same office.(50)
1 Write a report about an election that occurred between 1900-1950 and an election from
2000-2003. Explain in your own opinion how they differ and how they are alike. (50)
1 Research the history of government in your parish. Include the following in your report:
What is the present parish seat? Were any other towns the parish seat? How many
different buildings have served as the courthouse? When was the present courthouse built?
1 Analyze the following groups and the role they play in U.S. Politics.
AARP, NAACP, ACLU, NRA (50)