Tuesday, May 28, 2024

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Local Voices: A Constitution test


Submitted by Bob Malkas

I have written this article because a reader challenged what I said in the last one and questioned my professional reputation as a teacher and a soon-to-be published author. I have learned that I should never let a teaching opportunity go to waste.

I checked again, and District 215 does require a graduate to complete a unit in Civics but does not establish what it includes. I want to propose a way for parent and grandparents to learn for themselves how effective it has been for students who have completed the class.

I have retyped one of the Constitution tests I once used to determine if the students had digested enough information to take an active part in American government. I would invite readers to administer this test to your teenagers and learn for yourself what are the realities:


The first set of questions can be answered with a number placed in the blank:

  1. _____ How many Articles make up the U.S Constitution?
  2. _____ What is the term of a President in years?
  3. _____ What is the term of office of a member of the U.S. House of Representatives in years?
  4. _____ What is the term of office of a member of the U.S. Senate?
  5. _____ How many U.S. Senators are required by the Constitution?
  6. _____ What is the age that must be attained before someone can run to be the President of the U.S.?
  7. _____ How many Amendments have been added to the Constitution including the first ten known as the Bill of Rights, and this was done after it was already passed?

All powers granted by the people to the government are assigned to either (A) Executive Department, (B) Legislative Department, or (C) Judicial Department. Answer each question by using the correct letter:

Which branch has the power to:

  1. _____ Pass revenue-related laws
  2. _____ Conduct Foreign Policy
  3. Interpret the laws
    _____ making a declaration of war
    _____ making tax collection policy
    _____ granting pardons
    _____ beginning the impeachment process

Multiple choice:

  1. What is the term of office of a member of the U.S. Supreme Court?
    (A) Four years
    (B) Six years
    (C) Eight years
    (D) Lifetime appointment
  2. In what year was the Constitution ratified?
    (A) 1619
    (B) 1776
    (C) 1787
    (D) 1865
  3. How does a U.S. Supreme Court Justice get his job?
    (A) Elected by the people
    (B) Vote in Congress
    (C) Appointment by Congress
    (D) Appointment by the president
  4. Write an essay in not more than 50 words to answer the following question: Why am I happy to be a United States citizen?


Bob Malkas

Local Voices
Local Voiceshttps://thelansingjournal.com/category/lansing-voices/
Local Voices is The Lansing Journal's version of “Letters to the Editor.” The opinions posted here are those of the writers, and posting them does not indicate endorsement by The Lansing Journal. We welcome input from fellow residents who have thoughtful things to say about topics that are important to our community. Submissions may be sent to [email protected] with “Voices” in the subject line.