State Standard - Social Studies

Grade 5
Standard 1.0 Political Science: Students will understand the historical development and current status of the fundamental concepts and processes of authority, power, and influence, with particular emphasis on democratic skills and attitudes necessary to become responsible citizens.
A. The Foundations and Function of Government
1. Examine the early foundations, functions, and purposes of government
a. Describe how the European policies affected the interactions of explorers and colonists with Native Americans, such as the French and Indian War
b. Explain and clarify how Europe's philosophies and policies affected the political structure of the early American Colonies
c. Identify and summarize how democratic principles, such as rule of law, limited government, consent of the governed, popular sovereignty, representative democracy, and the limitation of power influenced our founding documents
d. Trace the development of early democratic ideas and practices that emerged during the early colonial period, including the significance of representative assemblies and town meetings
2. Analyze the historic events, documents, and practices that are the foundations of our political systems
a. Explain and report on the early examples of self-government, such as the Mayflower Compact and the House of Burgesses
b. Analyze the successes and failures in meeting the challenges of governing under Articles of Confederation
c. Explain the significance of principles in the development of the Declaration of Independence, Articles of Confederation, Preamble, U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights
d. Describe the three branches of government and their individual powers and responsibilities, such as separation of powers and checks and balances
3. Analyze the roles of colonial government regarding public policy and issues
a. Identify the effect that regional interests and perspectives had on shaping government policy, and compare such as middling class v. gentry, plantation owners v. proprietors
b. Analyze how geographic information influenced the formation of policy, such as the Proclamation of 1763
B. Individual and Group Participation in the Political System
1. Analyze how individuals' roles and perspectives shape the American political system
a. Examine the contributions of people associated with the drafting of the Declaration of Independence and the framing of the Constitution, such as James Madison, Thomas Jefferson, John Jay, and George Washington
b. Examine how the federalists and anti-federalist perspectives influenced government
2. Analyze the importance of civic participation as a citizen of the United States
a. Analyze the usefulness of various sources of information used to make political decisions
b. Compare ways people can participate in the political process including voting, petitioning elected officials, and volunteering
C. Protecting Rights and Maintaining Order
1. Describe individual rights and responsibilities in the United States
a. Describe responsibilities associated with certain basic rights of citizens, such as freedom of speech, religion, and press, and explain why these responsibilities are important
b. Describe the power and responsibility of the Supreme Court including the power of judicial review
2. Evaluate how the United States government protects the rights of individuals and groups
a. Explain the balance between providing for the common good and protecting individual rights
b. Analyze how government needs to provide more protection and order during times of crisis, such as the natural disasters and threats to national security
3. Examine the principle of due process
a. Describe the due process protections in the Bill of Rights


MSDE has developed a toolkit for these standards which can be found online at:


Date: 1/27/2015