Civic Ideals and Practices
2nd Grade Civic Ideals and Practices Inquiry

Do We Have to Have Rules?

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Supporting Question 1- What are my values and how do I show them?
  • Source A: A “quiz” that poses values-based scenarios, What Are My Values? 2015
What Are My Values?
  1. You’re about to beat a new level in your video game when your dad asks you to come set the table for dinner. What do you do?
                 a. Say “Sure,” and go right into the kitchen.
                 b. Say “I can’t right now! I’m doing something important.”
                 c. Pretend you don’t hear him.

       2. A classmate asks if she can copy your homework. What do you do?

                 a. Tell the classmate you won't let her copy because it isn't right.
                 b. Agree to let your classmate copy your homework.
                 c. Tell your teacher.

       3. A new student who joins your class has a strange haircut that you have never              seen before. What do you do?

                  a. Laugh at the haircut with the other kids.
                  b. Decide you want to ask the student where he's from.
                  c. Keep away from the new student.

        4. During recess, your best friend starts making fun of another student.
            What do you do?

                             a. Stick up for the other kid.
                   b. join your best friend in teasing the kid.
                   c. Mind your own business.

         5. You see a dog wandering alone in your neighborhood. What do you do?
                   a. Take the dog home and put up fliers in the neighborhood to find                         the answer.
                   b. Ask an adult to call the police or animal control.
                   c. Mind your own business. It's not your problem.

          6. You have a fight with a friend because you think your friend took                      favorite toy. Later you find the toy in your backpack. What do you do?
                   a. Say sorry to your friend.
                   b. Let your friend stay mad at you but hope your friend forgets about it.
                   c. Keep believing you are right, no matter what.

Created for the New York State K–12 Social Studies Toolkit by Binghamton University, 2015.

  • Source B: Image bank:  Help Wanted ads from 1915 and 2015
Supporting Question 2- Can we make classroom rules that reflect our values?
  • Source A: Andrew Graham, lithograph of the Great Seal, “Great Seal of the United States,” c1890
  • Source B: New York State Legislature, legislation to provide a safe school environment, Dignity for All Students Act (excerpt), 2010
Supporting Question 3- What would happen if we did not have rules?

Why Do We Need Rules?

It may seem like there are a lot of rules, but rules are important. There are rules everywhere. There are rules at home. There are rules at school. There are rules at the park.

Why do we need rules? Rules keep us safe. Without rules, children could run in the halls. That would not be safe. Someone might get hurt.

Rules keep things fair. Without rules, a friend might not get a turn in a game. That would not be fair. Without rules, the world would not be safe or fair.

Reprinted from