- Knowledge and Skills Statements (TEKS) identified by TEA are in italicized, bolded, black text.
- Student Expectations (TEKS) identified by TEA are in bolded, black text.
- Portions of the Student Expectations (TEKS) that are not included in this unit but are taught in previous or future units are indicated by a
- Supporting information / clarifications (specificity) written by TEKS Resource System are in blue text.
|| The student understands how constitutional government, as developed in America and expressed in the Declaration of Independence, the Articles of Confederation, and the U.S. Constitution, has been influenced by ideas, people, and historical documents. The student is expected to:
||Explain major political ideas in history, including the laws of nature and nature's God, unalienable rights, divine right of kings, social contract theory, and the rights of resistance to illegitimate government.
MAJOR POLITICAL IDEAS IN HISTORY
Including, but not limited to:
- Laws of nature and of nature’s God – phrase found in the Declaration of Independence; includes standards of justice which transcend laws made by humans; also called natural law
- Unalienable rights – inherent or natural rights possessed by all as a birthright of humanity. The Declaration of Independence, written by Thomas Jefferson, stated “that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” Jefferson was inspired by the writings of John Locke’s natural rights of “life, liberty, and property.”
- Divine right of kings – belief that monarchs were chosen by God, giving the monarch unlimited authority
- Social contract theory – in order for man to live in groups, he must give up some of his freedom to the government in exchange for protection of his natural rights. The idea was developed by Thomas Hobbes in Leviathan, expanded by John Locke in Second Treatise on Government, and by Jean Jacques Rousseau in Social Contract. The authority of government is derived from the consent of the governed. The citizens could challenge a government that does not preserve their natural rights. (e.g., Glorious Revolution in England and American struggle for independence)
- Right of resistance to illegitimate government – a principle stated in the Declaration of Independence: people have a right to create a government to protect their rights, and governments are established for the limited purposes of securing individual rights; authority is derived from the consent of the governed and people have the right to alter or abolish government when it fails to fulfill its purpose.
||Identify major intellectual, philosophical, political, and religious traditions that informed the American founding, including Judeo-Christian (especially biblical law), English common law and constitutionalism, Enlightenment, and republicanism, as they address issues of liberty, rights, and responsibilities of individuals.
MAJOR INTELLECTUAL, PHILOSOPHICAL, POLITICAL, AND RELIGIOUS TRADITIONS THAT INFORMED THE AMERICAN FOUNDING
Including, but not limited to:
- Judeo-Christian law – emphasizes how both Jewish and Christian principles influenced the Founding Fathers’ personal beliefs about liberty, responsibility, hard work, ethics, justice, and equality.
- English Common Law – used in the courts of England since the Middle Ages, common law is based on custom, usages, and general principles found in court decisions that serve as precedents to be applied to situations not covered by statutory law.
- Constitutionalism – the idea that the basic principles and laws of a government should be organized and administered through compliance with a written or unwritten constitution. A constitution effectively restrains the powers of the government and guarantees certain rights to the people.
- The Enlightenment – an intellectual movement concentrated in France during the 1700s. A group of philosophers including John Locke, Baron de Montesquieu, and Voltaire, sought to apply the rigors of scientific inquiry to study human society. They developed rational laws to describe social behavior and applied their findings in support of human rights (natural rights) and liberal economic theories.
- Republicanism – a philosophy of limited government with elected representatives serving at the will of the people; a belief that the only legitimate government is one based on the consent of the governed.
||Identify the individuals whose principles of laws and government institutions informed the American founding documents, including those of Moses, William Blackstone, John Locke, and Charles de Montesquieu.
THE INDIVIDUALS WHOSE PRINCIPLES OF LAWS AND GOVERNMENT INSTITUTIONS INFORMED THE AMERICAN FOUNDING DOCUMENTS
Including, but not limited to:
- Moses– a religious figure who, according to religious traditions, divinely received the Ten Commandments.
- William Blackstone – an English judge and professor who wrote the four-volume Commentaries on the Laws of England, in which he expressed his views on the common law of England. The four volumes included Rights of Persons, which describes the relationship between the government and the individual; Rights of Things, which explains the right of property; Private Wrongs, which deals with the law of torts or private complaints; and Public Wrongs, which focuses on crimes and punishments, including wrongs against God and religion.
- John Locke – English political philosopher, wrote Two Treatises of Government advocating natural rights of life, liberty and property as well as religious toleration, strongest influence on Thomas Jefferson
- Charles de Montesquieu – French political philosopher, major work The Spirit of the Laws advocated separation of powers as well as checks and balances to prevent one part of government from becoming too powerful
||Identify the contributions of the political philosophies of the Founding Fathers, including John Adams, Alexander Hamilton, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, John Jay, George Mason, Roger Sherman, and James Wilson, on the development of the U.S. government.
CONTRIBUTIONS OF POLITICAL PHILOSOPHIES OF FOUNDING FATHERS ON THE DEVELOPMENT OF U.S. GOVERNMENT
Including, but not limited to:
- Founding Father – individual who played a major role in declaring colonial independence, fighting the Revolutionary War, or writing and adopting the U.S. Constitution
- John Adams – served in 1st and 2nd Continental Congress, led the debate that ratified the Declaration of Independence, served as vice president for eight years under George Washington, and was elected the 2nd president of the United States in 1796. It is significant to note that he was not elected vice president; rather, he received the second most votes in the presidential election of 1788.
- Alexander Hamilton – a New York delegate to the Continental Congresses and the Constitutional Convention. He was a leading Federalist, favored strong central government, and helped write the Federalist Papers. He was the first Secretary of the Treasury, during which time he established the Mint and the National Bank. He believed in a loose interpretation of the Constitution.
- Thomas Jefferson – third president of the United States and author of the Declaration of Independence. He was an Anti-Federalist and supported a strong Bill of Rights. His opposition to a strong central government led to the creation of the first political parties. He was also a delegate to the Continental Congress. He did not take part in writing the Constitution because he was in France at the time. He was the first Secretary of State, taking Benjamin Franklin’s place as Minister to France; he approved the Louisiana Purchase.
- James Madison – called the “Father of the Constitution” since his work was essential to the writing and ratification of the Constitution. One of the authors of the Federalist Papers, he supported a strong central government. He also wrote the first 12 amendments to the Constitution, 10 of which were ratified as the Bill of Rights. He was the fourth president of the United States.
- John Jay – served as Ambassador to Spain and France during and after the American Revolution, helping to shape foreign policy and securing favorable peace terms with the British. He was President of the Continental Congress from 1778-1779 and 1789-1795 and first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. He co-wrote the Federalist Papers with Hamilton and Madison, warning in four of the articles of the dangers of “foreign force and influence” on a weak central government. As Chief Justice, he established the precedent that the Court does not take positions on legislation as it is being considered when he declined a request from Alexander Hamilton to endorse a law that would have assumed the debts of the states.
- George Mason – known as the “Father of the Bill of Rights,” he was a delegate from Virginia to the Constitutional Convention. He was the leader of those who pressed the Convention for a clear statement protecting the rights of states’ and individuals from the powerful central government; when none was included in the original document, he refused to sign it. His efforts resulted in the addition of the Bill of Rights by the first Congress, based on the earlier Virginia Declaration of Rights, authored by Mason. His Virginia Declaration of Rights was also a model for the French Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen, adopted in 1789.
- Roger Sherman – one member of the Committee of Five that drafted the Declaration of Independence and also helped write the Articles of Confederation. A delegate from Connecticut to the Constitutional Convention who favored protection of states’ rights, he offered what came to be called the Great Compromise or Connecticut Compromise, which broke the stalemate between large and small states over state representation in the new Congress. His compromise proposed the current two-house legislative body, with all states represented equally in the Senate and by population in the House of Representatives. He also supported electing the President by an Electoral College.
- James Wilson – signer of the Declaration of Independence and twice elected to the Continental Congress, and was one of the most prominent legal scholars among the Founders. At the Constitutional Convention, he wanted representatives in Congress to be elected by popular vote. He proposed the Three-Fifths Compromise which counted enslaved people as three-fifths of a person in determining how many representatives a state would be allotted in the House of Representatives, thus breaking a deadlock between slave and free states. He later served as one of the first Justices on the new Supreme Court.
||Analyze debates and compromises that impacted the creation of the founding documents.
DEBATES AND COMPROMISES THAT IMPACTED THE CREATION OF THE FOUNDING DOCUMENTS
Including, but not limited to:
- Founding documents – Declaration of Independence, Articles of Confederation, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights
Debates and compromises
- Limited government – a government in which constitutions, statements of rights, or other laws define the limits of those in power. Everyone, including all authority figures, must obey the laws. Reduces the opportunity for those in positions of authority to take advantage of their elected, appointed, or inherited positions.
- Republicanism – a philosophy of limited government with elected representatives serving at the will of the people. Supporters of republicanism believe that the only legitimate government is one based on the consent of the governed. This concept delayed the vote on The Declaration of Independence. The delegates wanted unanimity in the vote for independence, but several delegations were originally directed by the people of their colonies not to vote for independence from Great Britain.
- Popular Sovereignty – the concept that political power rests with the people who can create, alter, and abolish government. People express themselves through voting and free participation in government. Popular sovereignty is an important characteristic of democratic government.
- Individual rights – Many opposed the Constitution in 1787 because they believed it did not offer adequate protection of individual rights. The first ten amendments, collectively known as the Bill of Rights and ratified in 1791, were created to correct this. The individual rights protected in the Bill of Rights include economic rights related to property, political rights related to freedom of speech and press, and personal rights related to bearing arms and maintaining private residences.
- Federalism – the distribution of power between a federal government and the states within a union. Under the Articles of Confederation, most power had belonged to the states. Under the new Constitution, power was to be divided between the national and state governments. The 10th Amendment reserved to the states powers not granted to the national government, unless they were otherwise prohibited to the states.
- Checks and balances – a political system in which each branch of government can limit the power of the other branches. According to the U.S. Constitution, each of the three branches of government has distinct powers that can be limited in certain ways by the other two branches.
- Separation of powers – the concept of separating the powers of government between the executive, legislative, and judicial branches. The branches created in the Constitution included the legislative branch (with power to make the laws), known as Congress and made up of a House of Representatives and a Senate; the executive branch (with power to carry out the laws), known as the President; and the judicial branch (with power to interpret laws), known as the Supreme Court. The delegates to the Philadelphia Convention felt that by separating the powers of government, the Constitution afforded protection to U.S. citizens from abuses of power by a centralized government.
- The Virginia Plan – a plan debated in the Constitutional Convention, written by James Madison, and introduced by Edmund Randolph of the Virginia delegation. It proposed creation of a bicameral legislature (two-house legislature). Membership in the lower house was to be based on state population, and candidates were to be nominated and elected by the people of each state. Membership in the upper house was to be allocated in the same way, but candidates were to be nominated by the state legislatures and elected by the members of the lower house. The plan also proposed a government of three branches with a system of checks and balances, as well as creating a system of federalism to divide power between the national and state governments.
- The New Jersey Plan – a plan introduced by William Paterson of New Jersey in response to the Virginia Plan. Less populous states were afraid a population-based plan of legislative representation would result in their voices and interests being drowned out by the larger states. Many delegates also felt that the Convention did not have the authority to completely scrap the Articles of Confederation, as the Virginia Plan would have done. Paterson proposed a legislature consisting of a single house (unicameral legislature). Each state was to have equal representation in this body, regardless of population, with one vote per state. The plan would have left the Articles of Confederation in place, but would have amended them to somewhat increase the powers of Congress, recognizing that the states were independent entities and would remain so as they entered into the new government.
- The Great Compromise – also called the Connecticut Compromise because it was introduced by Roger Sherman of that state. It was a compromise between the Virginia and New Jersey plans for allocating representation in the legislative branch. In favor of the larger states, membership in the lower house, as in the Virginia Plan, was to be allocated in proportion to state population; candidates were to be nominated and elected by the people of each state. A census of all inhabitants of the United States was to be taken every 10 years. Also all bills for raising taxes, spending or appropriating money were to originate in the lower house. In exchange, membership in the upper house was more similar to the New Jersey Plan and allocated two seats to each state, regardless of size, with members being chosen by the state legislatures. After eleven days of debate, the compromise passed by one vote.
- Three-Fifths Compromise – addressed the issue of popular representation in the House of Representatives created by the Great Compromise. Less populous southern states were allowed to count three-fifths of all non-free, non-American Indian people toward population counts and the distribution of taxes. Delegates opposed to slavery generally wished to count only the free inhabitants of each state when determining the number of representatives allocated to a state. Delegates supportive of slavery generally wanted to count enslaved people in their actual numbers. Since enslaved people could not vote, slaveholders would thus have the benefit of increased representation in the House and the Electoral College. The final compromise of counting enslaved people as only three-fifths of their actual numbers reduced the power of the slave states relative to the original southern proposals, but increased it over the northern position. The 13th Amendment rendered the Three-Fifths Clause moot. The debate over slavery had played a role in determining the final language of the Declaration of Independence as well. Jefferson has included in the original draft a section condemning George III for allowing the slave trade to flourish. This provision was deleted by the delegates during debate, keeping the southern colonies from walking out of the meeting.
- Federalists vs. Anti-Federalists – two sides in the arguments for and against ratification of the Constitution and the government the document created. Disagreements over the way the Constitution divided power between the states and the national government, the degree to which the rights of states were protected, and the degree to which the rights of citizens were protected, led to furious debates as states held their conventions to vote on ratifying the Constitution. Those favoring ratification of the Constitution and adoption of the federalist form of government were called Federalists, and those opposed to the Constitution because they feared the power of the national government in the new federal system were called Anti-Federalists. Anti-Federalists were also concerned that if the national government could overrule state decisions, the protection of the liberty of individuals would be at risk. Patrick Henry and George Mason were leading Anti-Federalists. Henry was so opposed to the process that he did not even attend the convention which drafted the Constitution. Thomas Jefferson favored some aspects of the Constitution, but was concerned about the lack of protection for the rights of states and the absence of support for individual rights. He supported the inclusion of a Bill of Rights. In an effort to sway opinion and get the Constitution ratified, three leading Federalists (James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, and John Jay) published their views in The Federalist, a series of 85 newspaper essays which have become a classic of American political thought.
||Identify significant individuals in the field of government and politics, including George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, John Marshall, Andrew Jackson, Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin D. Roosevelt, and Ronald Reagan.
SIGNIFICANT INDIVIDUALS IN GOVERNMENT AND POLITICS
Including, but not limited to:
- George Washington – first President of the United States. He set precedent by stepping down after two terms, thus initiating a peaceful transition of power and by creating a Cabinet. One of his greatest accomplishments was issuing the Neutrality Proclamation because it allowed the fledgling United States to build a solid system of government without becoming embroiled in a foreign war.
- Thomas Jefferson – third President of the United States. He was the principal author of the Declaration of Independence. With James Madison, he formed the Democratic-Republican Party which opposed the Federalists’ plan for national economic development and foreign entanglements with England. The party also championed state’s rights in opposition to the strong central government favored by the Federalists. In 1800, Jefferson was elected president and served two terms. He maintained peace and encouraged westward expansion during the first term, completing the Louisiana Purchase in 1803 from Napoleon, nearly doubling the size of the United States.
- John Marshall – as a justice in the U.S. Supreme Court, Marshall helped to establish the authority of the court in defining the limits of the U.S. Constitution and the authority of the executive branch. He was appointed chief justice by President John Adams and served from 1801-1835. During his tenure the court set precedents that shaped federal law and government. Most important was the Marbury v. Madison decision (1803) in which he ruled that the federal courts had the power to determine whether or not congressional legislation was constitutional.
- Andrew Jackson – seventh President of the United States. During the War of 1812, he rose to national prominence as a military leader who fended off the British in the Battle of New Orleans. He ran for the presidency in 1824, but was not elected. In 1828, however, he was elected in a landslide. Jackson favored a powerful presidency. His style of government based in popular support became known as Jacksonian Democracy. He increased the control of the executive branch of government, thereby starting a trend toward a more centralized government. Jackson appointed political allies to positions in government (a process called the “spoils system”), and vetoed more bills in his two terms as president than previous presidents combined because he believed in a strict interpretation of the Constitution.
- Abraham Lincoln – sixteenth President of the United States. He managed to preserve the unity of the United States during the Civil War. His Gettysburg Address called for national unity, and his most lasting influence is the 13th amendment which banned slavery throughout the United States. Is considered the first Republican President and is credited with starting the Republican Party along with anti-slavery advocates.
- Theodore Roosevelt – twenty-sixth President of the United States. He was the leader of the “Rough Riders,” a volunteer cavalry unit which served in the Spanish-American War. He served as governor of New York and then as William McKinley’s vice president. When McKinley was assassinated in 1901, Roosevelt succeeded to the presidency and was later elected to a full term in 1904. He supported expansionism, a powerful navy, and the development of a canal across Central America (the Panama Canal). Under Roosevelt’s direction, the United States became the police of the western hemisphere. Numerous reforms were enacted during his tenure. He prosecuted big business for trust violations, supported passage of the Pure Food and Drug Act, and created national parks.
- Franklin Roosevelt – thirty-second president of the United States. Elected in 1932 during the Great Depression, he began implementing his New Deal philosophy in the first 100 days after his inauguration. His reforms, proposed to counteract the effects of the Depression, affected four areas: finance, industry, agriculture, and relief (welfare). He strengthened government work programs. His executive orders and sponsorship of legislation in the national interest supported the weak economy and remained viable years after his death. Yet, critics worried that his growing executive authority might undermine the checks and balances of the three branches of government. This concern derived from Roosevelt’s attempts to pack the Supreme Court with his own appointees. Congress eventually passed a court reform bill but it did not support Roosevelt’s ideas. He also fostered a new diplomacy to counter the aggression of Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini, and Tojo Hideki in World War II. American support for Roosevelt was high, and he dominated the political scene for four terms, the most of any U.S. president. The 22nd Amendment adopted in 1951 and often termed the anti-Franklin Roosevelt amendment, limits presidents to two terms.
- Ronald Reagan – fortieth President of the United States. He implemented sweeping new political and economic initiatives. His supply-side economic policies, dubbed "Reaganomics," advocated controlling the money supply to reduce inflation, and spurring economic growth by reducing tax rates, government regulation of the economy, and certain types of government spending. Publicly describing the Soviet Union as an "evil empire," he supported anti-Communist movements worldwide and spent his first term forgoing the strategy of détente by ordering a massive military buildup in an arms race with the USSR. Reagan negotiated with Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, culminating in a treaty decreasing both countries' nuclear arsenals.
|| The student understands the American beliefs and principles reflected in the U.S. Constitution and why these are significant. The student is expected to:
||Analyze how the Federalist Papers such as Number 10 and Number 51 explain the principles of the American constitutional system of government.
HOW THE FEDERALIST PAPERS EXPLAIN THE PRINCIPLES OF THE AMERICAN SYSTEM OF GOVERNMENT
Including, but not limited to:
- Federalist Papers – collection of essays written during the debates over ratification of the Constitution by John Jay, James Madison, and Alexander Hamilton that promote a strong central government and describe a republican form of government. The principles espouse in the document include judicial review, limited government, checks and balances.
- Federalist Number 10 – written by Madison; begins by stating the strong Constitution has the ability to control the violence and aggressions caused by factions, which cause instability in the government. It also says corruption in government will be less likely because representatives will be chosen by a large population. It describes the new republican form of government created by the Constitution and states the main goal of the new government is to make all states secure from threats and invasions.
- Federalist Number 51 – written by Madison; addresses the means by which appropriate checks and balances can be created in government and also advocates a separation of powers within the national government. One of its most important ideas is the often quoted phrase, "Ambition must be made to counteract ambition."
|| The student applies critical-thinking skills to organize and use information acquired through established research methodologies from a variety of valid sources, including technology. The student is expected to:
||Analyze information by sequencing, categorizing, identifying cause-and-effect relationships, comparing, contrasting, finding the main idea, summarizing, making generalizations and predictions, and drawing inferences and conclusions.
Including, but not limited to:
- Sequencing refers to the practice of arranging items in a specific order. Most commonly in social studies this is done with events either sequenced by absolute chronology or exact date of by relative chronology or placing events in chronological order without necessarily identifying exact dates
- Categorizing refers to the practice of placing items in particular groups.
- Identifying cause-and-effect relationships is a common skill applied in historical analysis to examine change over time.
- Comparing and contrasting refers to examination of similarities and differences.
- Finding the main idea is a literacy skill applied to the examination most often of textual and visual sources.
- Summarizing is a literacy skill utilized to condense information to a concise version.
- Making generalizations and predictions is facilitated by the examination of patterns. Generalizations are general statements that should be based on the evidence presented by patterns and predictions can be made based on that pattern.
- Drawing inferences and conclusions results from examining evidence and articulating interpretations of that evidence.
||Analyze and evaluate the validity of information, arguments, and counterarguments from primary and secondary sources for bias, propaganda, point of view, and frame of reference.
VALIDITY OF INFORMATION FROM PRIMARY AND SECONDARY SOURCES
Including, but not limited to:
- Bias refers to a favoritism towards one way of thinking. All individuals exhibit bias, of which they may or may not be consciously aware.
- Propaganda refers to information that is generally considered to be misleading or promotes a particular view point, partisan perspective
- Point of view refers to the historical perspective, claim, or attitude an individual expresses in a document.
- Frame of reference refers to the life experiences of the author of a source
|| The student communicates in written, oral, and visual forms. The student is expected to:
||Use social studies terminology correctly.
SOCIAL STUDIES TERMINOLOGY CORRECTLY
||Create written, oral, and visual presentations of social studies information using effective communication skills, including proper citations and avoiding plagiarism.
WRITTEN, ORAL, VISUAL PRESENTATIONS USING EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION SKILLS
Including, but not limited to:
- Effective communication skills
- Correct grammar and punctuation
- Accurate spelling
- Clear diction and sentence structure
- Proper citations to avoid plagiarism