Course Principles of GPA. Unit III Implementation of the Three Branches of Government

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1 Course Principles of GPA Unit III Implementation of the Three Branches of Government Essential Question What are the structure and functions of the executive branch of the government, including the constitutional powers of the president, the growth of presidential power, and the role of the Cabinet and executive departments? TEKS (c) (10)(B) Prior Student Learning None Estimated Time 45 minutes Structure and Functions of the Executive Branch Rationale This lesson introduces students to foundations of governmental functions and career opportunities within the United States. This knowledge is essential to making informed decisions about government careers. Objectives The student will be able to 1. Analyze the structure and functions of the executive branch of government, such as the constitutional powers of the president, the growth of presidential power, and the role of the cabinet and executive departments Engage Use the following activity to start a class discussion: divide the class into groups of three. Once the students are divided into groups, give each group a set of seventeen different note cards. Each note card should be labeled with each one of the executive departments in addition to Vice President and Speaker of the House. Students will be given five minutes to place the note cards in the order pertaining to the Presidential line of succession. Use the Discussion Rubric for assessment. Key Points I. Executive Branch The Presidency A. Roles 1. Chief of state a. Ceremonial head of the government b. Symbol of the people 2. Chief executive a. Broad executive power domestic and foreign b. Limited by checks and balances 3. Chief administrator of the executive branch a. 27 million civilians employed under his direction b. $3 trillion a year spent 4. Chief diplomat a. Main architect of foreign policy b. Nation s spokesperson to the world 5. Commander-in-chief a. Head of the nation s armed forces b. Dominant in military and foreign affairs 6. Chief legislator a. Main author of public policy b. Shapes the congressional agenda 7. Chief of party 1

2 a. Leader of the party that controls the executive branch b. Not a role set forth in the Constitution, but much of the President s real power and influence stem from this role 8. Chief citizen a. Representative of all the people b. Expected to champion public over private interests c. Not a role set forth in the Constitution B. Formal qualifications 1. A natural born citizen of the United States 2. At least 35 years old 3. Resided in the U.S. for at least 14 years C. Term limits 1. Four-year term with eligibility for reelection 2. The Constitution placed no limit on the number of terms a President could serve until Unwritten rule (starting with George Washington) was no more than two terms until FDR, who served four 4. The 22 nd amendment says that no President may serve more than 10 years in office II. Growth of Presidential Power A. Powers given in the Constitution 1. Executive power to ensure the laws of the land are faithfully executed 2. Command of the armed forces 3. Making of treaties 4. Approval or veto of acts of Congress 5. Calling of special sessions of Congress 6. Sending and receiving of diplomatic representatives 7. Judicial power to grant reprieves and pardons for federal offenses against the U.S. a. Commutation b. Amnesty B. Expanded powers 1. As the single, commanding officer, the President has unity, as opposed to Congress, which is composed of two houses that must agree before taking action 2. Strong Presidents such as Abraham Lincoln have increased power in this office 3. An increasingly complex economic and social life has demanded more power 4. Repeated need for immediate and decisive action in times of crisis, such as war 5. The President has a unique position from which to attract and hold public attention and build support for policies and actions C. Executing the law 1. The Constitution requires the President to execute all federal laws 2. To accomplish that task, the President must have ordinance 2

3 power to issue and implement executive orders 3. In executing and enforcing law, the President and his subordinates also interpret it 4. Congress enacts many laws written in broad terms; the specific details are left to the executive branch to be worked out III. Executive Office of the President (EOP) A. The President s right arm B. A complex organization of several separate agencies staffed by 900 of the President s closest advisors and assistants C. Congress established the EOP in 1939 D. EOP is reorganized in every administration E. Agencies in the EOP 1. White House Office a. The President s inner circle b. Advises on foreign policy, defense, homeland security, the economy, etc. 2. National Security Council (NSC) a. Advises on domestic, foreign, and military matters related to national security b. Includes the Vice President, and the secretaries of state, treasury, and defense 3. Office of Management and Budget a. Prepares the federal budget b. Monitors spending c. Keeps the President up to date on the work of all agencies 4. Other EOP agencies a. Office of National Drug Control Policy b. Council of Economic Advisors c. Domestic Policy Council d. Council on Environmental Quality IV. The Cabinet Departments A. Also known as the executive departments, much of the work of the federal government is done by these 15 departments 1. Department of State 2. Department of Defense 3. Department of Treasury 4. Department of Justice 5. Department of Interior 6. Department of Agriculture 7. Department of Commerce 8. Department of Labor 9. Department of Health and Human Services 10. Department of Housing and Urban Development 11. Department of Transportation 12. Department of Energy 13. Department of Education 14. Department of Veterans Affairs 3

4 15. Department of Homeland Security B. Employ nearly two-thirds of the federal government s nonmilitary workforce C. The First Congress created three of these departments in 1789 D. As the size and workload of the federal government grew, Congress added new departments E. The Cabinet is an informal advisory body made up of the heads of each of the executive departments, in addition to top officials chosen by the President F. Importance of the cabinet has declined in recent years G. In the past, the cabinet was the principal source of presidential advice, meeting as often as twice a week to provide counsel to the President H. The growth of other presidential resources, such as the staff of the EOP, has eclipsed the cabinet s role I. Now, cabinet sessions serve more to show unified support for some policy rather than to thrash out the details of the policy V. Independent Agencies A. There are more than 100 agencies located outside the cabinet departments B. Some independent agencies administer programs similar to those of the cabinet departments C. Distinguishing these independent agencies from executive departments is difficult, causing administrative confusion D. Examples of independent agencies 1. NASA 2. General Services Administration (GSA) 3. Social Security Administration Activities 1. Executive Power: Teaching Through Current Events Article Do an Internet search for executive power teaching through current events. Have students read and summarize the article. After summarizing the article, have the students participate in a guided discussion using the key points from the lesson, as well as key points from the article over executive power. Use the questions below for the discussion. The Summary Rubric and/or the Discussion Rubric may be used for assessment. What are limits to Executive Power? When must the executive be checked? When does executive oversight turn into micromanagement? Based on your opinion, what are current examples of executive micromanagement? 2. Who are these people anyway? Have students research the thirteen executive cabinet positions. Have them identify the names of the government officials who currently hold the positions, how long each person has held their position, and which president appointed them to that 4

5 position. Have students write their answers. Use the Who Are These People Anyway? Handout (answers are dependent upon current information). Assessments Structure and Functions of the Executive Branch Quiz and Key Discussion Rubric Individual Work Rubric Summary Rubric Materials Structure and Functions of the Executive Branch computer-based presentation Structure and Functions of the Executive Branch Key Terms Who Are These People Anyways? handout Resources , Macgruder s American Government, McClenaghan, W., Pearson, Prentice Hall, (Chs ) Frayer, D., Frederick, W. C., and Klausmeier, H. J. (1969). A Schema for Testing the Level of Cognitive Mastery. Madison, WI: Wisconsin Center for Education Research Do an Internet search for the following: executive power teaching through current events. Accommodations for Learning Differences For reinforcement, have students create a Frayer Model with the different Executive Office Agencies. Through the Frayer Model, students should be able to identify characteristics and examples of the executive agencies. Use the Individual Work Rubric for assessment. For enrichment, have students identify a current event article using sources such as newspapers, online new sources, journal articles, or research databases. The current event should pertain to the President exercising his executive power. Students should be able to identify the main points of the article and be able to identify any bias presented by the author. Use the Individual Work Rubric for assessment. State Education Standards Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills for Career and Technical Education Principles of Government and Public Administration (One-Half to One Credit). (10) The student will select an appropriate method of communication to facilitate the flow of ideas and information among government, public administration, the business community, and the general public. The student is expected to: (B) analyze the structure and functions of the executive branch of government, such as the constitutional powers of the president, the growth of presidential power, and the role of the cabinet and 5

6 executive departments College and Career Readiness Standards Cross-disciplinary Standards I. Key Cognitive Skills C. Problem solving 1. Analyze a situation to identify a problem to be solved. 3. Collect evidence and data systematically and directly relate to solving a problem. 6

7 Structure and Functions of the Executive Branch Key Terms 1. Executive orders directives, rules, or regulations that have the effect of law 2. Ordinance power the power to issue executive orders 3. Discretion the freedom to make a decision 4. Reprieve the postponement of the execution of a sentence 5. Pardon legal forgiveness of a crime 6. Clemency the power of mercy or leniency 7. Commutation the power to reduce a fine or the length of a sentence imposed by a court 8. Amnesty a blanket pardon offered to a group of law violators 9. Inner circle those most influential, closest to the center of power 7

8 Who Are These People Anyway? Research the following executive cabinet positions. Identify the names of the government officials who currently hold the positions. Include how long each person has held their position and which U.S President appointed them to their position. Write your answers. 1. Vice President 2. Secretary of State 3. Secretary of Defense 4. Secretary of the Interior 5. Secretary of Energy 6. Director of the FBI 7. Director of the CIA 8. National Security Advisor 9. Attorney General 10. Director of the Office of Management and Budget 11. Chairman of the Federal Reserve Board 12. Chief Justice of the Supreme Court 13. Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff 8

9 The Frayer Model Definition Characteristics Word Examples Non-examples 9

10 Name: Date: Structure and Functions of the Executive Branch Quiz 1. Which of the following is true about the office of President? a. The Constitution requires the President to execute all federal laws b. In executing and enforcing the law, the President and his subordinates also interpret it c. Both a and b d. Neither a nor b 2. The Executive Branch of the U.S. government a. Is headed by the President who employs 27 million nonmilitary people to advise, and help interpret and enforce laws b. Is the weakest link of the three branches c. Was an afterthought, added to the Constitution after George Washington was elected President d. Has responsibility for making laws but no power to enforce them 3. The President a. Plays multiple roles, but none of them were designated in the Constitution b. Is, among other things, the ceremonial head of government, the main architect of foreign policy, and the commander-in-chief of the nation s armed forces c. Has the responsibility to enforce laws but does not have any judicial powers d. Is required to spend at least half of his time in office outside the U.S. 4. To be eligible for Presidential office in the U.S., a person must a. Be a natural born citizen of the United States b. Be at least 35 years old c. Have resided in the U.S. for at least 14 years d. All of the above 5. The number of 4-year terms a President can serve a. Was designated in the Constitution as no more than two terms b. Was an unwritten rule until the 22 nd Amendment no more than 10 years in office c. Has changed with each Presidency d. Is unlimited 10

11 6. The Constitution gave the President certain powers, but those powers have grown over time. Which of the following Presidential powers were spelled out in the Constitution? a. Executive power to ensure the laws of the land are faithfully executed b. Command the armed forces, make treaties, and approve or veto acts of Congress c. Judicial power to grant reprieves and pardons for federal offenses against the U.S d. All of the above 7. Which of the following are reasons for the expansion of the President s power? a. Congress voted to give the President more power b. Increasingly complex economic and social life have demanded more power as has the repeated need for immediate and decisive action in times of crisis, such as war c. The President s Cabinet voted to give the President more power d. None of the above 8. Which of the following describes the Executive Office of the President (EOP)? a. The President s right arm b. A complex organization of several separate agencies staffed by 900 of the President s closest advisors and assistants c. Includes agencies such as the White House Office, National Security Council, and Office of Management and Budget d. All of the above 9. The Cabinet a. Is an informal advisory body made up of heads of each of the executive departments in addition to top officials chosen by the President b. Does not play the critical role that it once did because it is no longer the principal source of presidential advice c. Both a and b d. Neither a nor b 10. Today, the inner circle or the most influential group advising the President is a. The Executive Office of the President (EOP) b. The Cabinet c. Mass media d. Independent agencies 11

12 Structure and Functions of the Executive Branch Quiz Key 1. c 2. a 3. b 4. d 5. b 6. d 7. b 8. d 9. c 10. a 12

13 Name Date Objectives 4 pts. Excellent Discussion Rubric 3 pts. Good 2 pts. Needs Some Improvement 1 pt. Needs Much Improvement N/A Pts. Participates in group discussion Encourages others to join the conversation Keeps the discussion progressing to achieve goals Shares thoughts actively while offering helpful recommendations to others Gives credit to others for their ideas Respects the opinions of others Involves others by asking questions or requesting input Expresses thoughts and ideas clearly and effectively Total Points (32 pts.) Comments: 13

14 Name Date Objectives Follows directions Student completed the work as directed, following the directions given, in order and to the level of quality indicated Time management Student used time wisely and remained on task 100% of the time Organization Student kept notes and materials in a neat, legible, and organized manner. Information was readily retrieved Evidence of learning Student documented information in his or her own words and can accurately answer questions related to the information retrieved *Research/Gathering information (if relevant) Student used a variety of methods and sources to gather information. Student took notes while gathering information Total Points (20 pts.) Comments: Individual Work Rubric 4 pts. Excellent 3 pts. Good 2 pts. Needs Some Improvement 1 pt. Needs Much Improvement N/A Pts. 14

15 Name Date Objectives The critical analysis has all required parts from introduction to body to conclusion. The critical analysis is concise but complete. The critical analysis demonstrates that the writer comprehends the content. The critical analysis demonstrates accurate spelling, grammar, and punctuation. The overall content of the critical analysis emphasizes appropriate points. The writer shows an understanding of sentence structure, paragraphing, and punctuation. The source of the critical analysis is clearly and accurately documented. The critical analysis demonstrates the correct use of terminology. 4 pts. Excellent Summary Rubric 3 pts. Good 2 pts. Needs Some Improvement 1 pt. Needs Much Improvement N/A Pts. Total Points (32 pts.) Comments: 15

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