Are All Rules Good Rules?
Download full Inquiry here.

Supporting Question 1- Who makes the rules?
  • Key point- make the distinction between rules and laws: A rule is a direction we have to follow to keep us healthy, safe, and orderly; the rules in our community are often called laws.
  • Source A: Image bank: Rule makers
    • Image 1: School Principal
    • © iStock/© Steve Debenport.
    • Image 2: Basketball Coach
    • © iStock/© Susan Chiang.
    • Image 3: Lifeguard
    • © iStock/© gchutka.
    • Image 4: Teacher
    • © iStock/© iofoto.
    • Image 5: Parents with their child.
    • © iStock/© Lorraine Boogich.
    • © iStock/© aijohn784.
  • Source B: Image bank: Rules created by children
    • Image 1: Rules for a brother and sister
    • Photo courtesy of Kate Hesla.
    • Image 2: Rules for a school classroom.
      • Photo courtesy of Kate Hesla.
    • Photo courtesy of Kate Hesla


  • Source C: Brain POP Jr., video on the branches of the US government, Branches of Government with Annie & Moby, 2015©2015 BrainPOP. All rights reserved. 


Supporting Question 2- What does it mean to follow the rules?
  • Source A: Image bank: Signs indicating rules
    • Image 1: Sign warning about the need to use seat belts.
    • © Shutterstock/© Robert J. Beyers II.
    • Image 2: Sign indicating in which direction it is legal to drive.
    • © iStock/© Lisay.
    • Image 3: Sign indicating that diving is not allowed
    • © Shutterstock/© NEGOVURA.

Supporting Question 3- Can the rules ever change?
  • Source A: Susan LaBella, article about the history of the right to vote, “Voting and the Law,” 2015
    • NOTE:  This source points to the idea that rules, such as voting laws, can be changed to protect people’s rights. But teachers should also help their students see the connection between electing representatives for positions in government and the ability to change laws.
      Voting and the Law
      By Susan LaBella
      When people vote, they make a choice. For example, people voting for U.S. Congress pick the men and women who pass laws that govern the country.


      People who run for office are called candidates. During the weeks before an election is held, candidates describe what they plan to do if they are elected. The candidates make speeches about their ideas. They have discussions with other candidates. They may promise to work to change laws they do not like or to pass new ones.
      Voters listen to these promises. Then they decide which candidates they think are the best. On Election Day, voters go to a public building, such as a school or a firehouse. They vote by filling out a paper form or, in some places, by using a computer.
      Long ago, only a small number of people in the United States could vote. Some men were allowed to vote, but women, black people, poor people, and young people could not. Over the years, laws were changed. Now many more people can vote. All voters must be U.S. citizens and at least eighteen years old.
      They all must have registered, or signed up, to vote.
      At the end of every Election Day, votes are counted. The winning candidates are announced. Soon, the winners will get their chance to do the things they promised to do.
      © 2015 ReadWorks®, Inc. All rights reserved.
  • Source B: "Minimum Wage Update"