ESL Civics Lesson Plan

Instructor: Kristen Goode

Kristen has been an educator for 25+ years - as a classroom teacher, a school administrator, and a university instructor. She holds a doctorate in Education Leadership.

To understand basic civics in the United States is to understand how our government is set up. This lesson plan is designed to give a deeper understanding of each of the three branches of United States government as well as a basic introduction to the Constitution as a document on which our government has been established.

Learning Objectives

At the conclusion of this lesson, students will:

  • Identify the three branches of United States government as a basis of an understanding of civics.
  • Explain the purpose of each branch.
  • Write about the idea of balance of power in government.

Curriculum Standards


By the end of grade 8, read and comprehend history/social studies texts in the grades 6-8 text complexity band independently and proficiently.


Identify key steps in a text's description of a process related to history/social studies (e.g., how a bill becomes law, how interest rates are raised or lowered).


60-75 minutes


  • Pencil/paper for each student
  • A means of doing research (Internet, encyclopedia, etc)
  • White wigs or time period costumes (early America - 1700s)

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