Foundation Basics Icivics Teacher Guide

Are you a Foundation Basics Icivics Teacher? If so, then this article is for you! For those of us who teach children about the basics of government and citizenship, we know that it can be hard to keep our students interested in what they are learning. That’s why Foundation Basics has created an icivics teacher guide that will help your students learn everything necessary from 10 tips on how to strive academically to advice on handling bullies. You’ll love teaching with these new ideas because it makes being an educator easier than ever before-and also more rewarding since your student might go off into society armed with some important information about democracy!

Teacher’s Guide

Foundation Basics

You may be a teacher and not know that Foundation is the newest teaching tool for educators. It can help you create engaging lessons, manage your time better, and make it easy to share resources with other teachers. This blog post will go over the basics of what Foundation is and how to use it in your classroom. 

In this blog post we will cover: What is foundation? How do I get started? How does this work for me as a teacher? What are some tips for getting my students involved? Is there anything else I should know about Foundation before using it in my classroom? 

If you would like more information on foundation please let us know – we are happy to provide additional resources!

Time Needed:

1 class period


  • • Student handouts
  • • Government cards (precut)
  • • PALS projection master


  • Reading (3 pages; class set)
  • Activities (3 pages; class set)


Students will be able to…

  • Explain how governments get their power, authority, legitimacy, and sovereignty
  • Analyze governments for key characteristics
  • Describe the relationships power, authority, legitimacy, and sovereignty share
  • Consider a government’s legitimacy

Step by Step


A passage from “The lessons are in the eye of the beholder” by Laurence Gonzales: The lesson is to ask students about someone who has power. Ask them to describe this person, and why others follow him or her? Where does their power come from? Why do you believe they have it? Is there anyone more powerful than this person, and if so who might that be?”


The students are told that they will learn about key characteristics of a government’s foundation.


The teacher read the passage to her students and then asked for their feedback.


I’ll always remember the reading we did with my favorite students. They got to read out loud to me and share their opinions or ask questions about what they were reading, which was really cool! I have another idea too: if you don’t want your kids in groups of three or four, let them do it by themselves-they will be more absorbed that way because there’s no distraction from other people talking around them.


Several of the lesson activities are for students to complete in groups or pairs. The instructions and answers will vary, so tell them that any conclusion supported with sound logic is acceptable.


Answers are tricky. I know what answer is the right one, but there will always be people who disagree with me and have a different opinion about it. That’s why we need to talk these things out! Talking through our responses can help us see from other perspectives so that when someone challenges my idea or just has something interesting to say, I’m able work on evaluating their idea in order to come up with better answers for myself than before — which was pretty hard because nobody wanted anything they said challenged in class at all times by everyone else around them (even if it were true).


The PALS projection master is a really cool toy. It’s designed to be played with in groups of eight, who then work together and debate the Government Cards they get handed out by drawing on whiteboard-type slides that are projected onto a large screen TV or projector.


Students will analyze the key characteristics of different types of government to identify its power, authority, legitimacy and sovereignty.


The students in the class spend time talking about their government and its key characteristics. Once they feel comfortable, they call on six groups to tell us all what type of system we have here at our school before sharing it with those who couldn’t hear firsthand from one of these conversations.


by asking students: Why do you think power, authority, legitimacy and sovereignty are four key characteristics any government must have in order to function?

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