Kentucky

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Skills available for Kentucky eighth-grade social studies standards

Standards are in black and IXL social studies skills are in dark green. Hold your mouse over the name of a skill to view a sample question. Click on the name of a skill to practice that skill.

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The study of government and civics equips students to understand the nature of government and the unique characteristics of representative democracy in the United States, including its fundamental principles, structure and the role of citizens. Understanding the historical development of structures of power, authority, and governance and their evolving functions in contemporary U.S. society and other parts of the world is essential for developing civic competence. An understanding of civic ideals and practices of citizenship is critical to full participation in society and is a central purpose of the social studies.

  • Formation of Governments

    • SS-08-1.1.1 Students will compare purposes and sources of power in the most common forms of government (monarchy, democracy, republic).

    • SS-08-1.1.2 Students will describe and give examples to support how democratic government in the United States prior to Reconstruction functioned to preserve and protect the rights (e.g., voting), liberty and property of their citizens by making, enacting and enforcing appropriate rules and laws (e.g., constitutions, laws, statutes).

    • SS-08-1.1.3 Students will describe and give examples of the ways the Constitution of the United States is a document that can be changed from time to time through both formal and informal processes (e.g., amendments, court cases, executive actions) to meet the needs of its citizens.

  • Constitutional Principles

  • Rights and Responsibilities

    • SS-08-1.3.1 Students will explain and give examples of how significant United States documents (Declaration of Independence, Constitution, Bill of Rights) established democratic principles and guaranteed certain rights for all citizens.

    • SS-08-1.3.2 Students will explain and give examples of how, in order for the U.S. government to function as a democracy, citizens must assume responsibilities (e.g., participating in community activities, voting in elections) and duties (e.g., obeying the law, paying taxes, serving on a jury, registering for the military).

Culture is the way of life shared by a group of people, including their ideas and traditions. Cultures reflect the values and beliefs of groups in different ways (e.g., art, music, literature, religion); however, there are universals (e.g., food, clothing, shelter, communication) connecting all cultures. Culture influences viewpoints, rules and institutions in a global society. Students should understand that people form cultural groups throughout the United States and the World, and that issues and challenges unite and divide them.

Economics includes the study of production, distribution and consumption of goods and services. Students need to understand how their economic decisions affect them, others, the nation and the world. The purpose of economic education is to enable individuals to function effectively both in their own personal lives and as citizens and participants in an increasingly connected world economy. Students need to understand the benefits and costs of economic interaction and interdependence among people, societies and governments.

  • Scarcity

    • SS-08-3.1.1 Students will explain and give examples of how scarcity required individuals, groups and the government in the United States prior to Reconstruction to make decisions about how productive resources (natural resources, human resources, capital goods) were used.

    • SS-08-3.1.2 Students will identify how financial decisions (considering finance and opportunity cost) by individuals and groups impacted historical events in U.S. History prior to Reconstruction.

  • Economic Systems and Institutions

  • Markets

    • SS-08-3.3.1 Students will explain how in the United States prior to Reconstruction, the prices of goods and services were determined by supply and demand.

    • SS-08-3.3.2 Students will explain how money (unit of account) was used to express the market value of goods and services and how money made it easier to trade, borrow, invest and save in the United States prior to Reconstruction.

    • SS-08-3.3.3 Students will explain how competition among buyers and sellers impacted the price of goods and services in the United States prior to Reconstruction.

  • Production, Distribution, and Consumption

    • SS-08-3.4.1 Students will explain ways in which the basic economic questions about the production, distribution and consumption of goods and services were addressed in the United States prior to Reconstruction.

    • SS-08-3.4.2 Students will describe how new knowledge, technology/tools and specialization increased productivity in the United States prior to Reconstruction.

    • SS-08-3.4.3 Students will explain how personal, national and international economic activities were interdependent in the United States prior to Reconstruction.

Geography includes the study of the five fundamental themes of location, place, regions, movement and human/environmental interaction. Students need geographic knowledge to analyze issues and problems to better understand how humans have interacted with their environment over time, how geography has impacted settlement and population, and how geographic factors influence climate, culture, the economy and world events. A geographic perspective also enables students to better understand the past and present and to prepare for the future.

History is an account of events, people, ideas and their interaction over time that can be interpreted through multiple perspectives. In order for students to understand the present and plan for the future, they must understand the past. Studying history engages students in the lives, aspirations, struggles, accomplishments and failures of real people. Students need to think in an historical context in order to understand significant ideas, beliefs, themes, patterns and events, and how individuals and societies have changed over time in Kentucky, the United States and the World.