teaching resource

Checks and Balances - RACES Writing Prompt Worksheet

Teach Starter Publishing
Google Slide, PDF | 2 pages | Grades: 3 - 5

Practice using the RACES writing strategy and unravel the mysteries of the U.S. Government system of checks and balances with a passage, organizer, and prompt.

Discover Checks and Balances Along with the RACES Writing Strategy

Do you need resources to teach about the United States Government? We’ve got the background and the resources you need to make that happen!

The U.S. government was created by the Constitution, and it was designed to prevent one leader from having total control over the country. The system allows the other branches of government to “check” the others to prevent unwanted leadership decisions. As adults, the concepts are pretty clear, but for young learners, Government is, by far, one of the most difficult abstract concepts to teach. We’re here to help you do that!

This worksheet integrates Social Studies and writing concepts. Students will read a short passage covering the basics of the System of Checks and Balances in America. They will then use our RACES Writing Strategy Graphic organizer to plan and rough draft their constructed response to the question, “How does the system of checks and balances keep thing fair in the U.S.?”

Tips for Differentiation + Scaffolding 

In addition to independent student work time, use this worksheet as an activity for:

Fast Finisher Activity

  • Challenge your fast finishers to extend their learning into a research project or essay development activity. 
  • Have students take the concepts learned and create a poster or other visual display about the system of checks and balances.

Support Struggling Students

  • Support struggling readers or ESL students by providing sentence starters or sentence frames to aid in completing their paragraphs.
  • Provide struggling students with an anchor chart or other reference materials to use during the activity.

Easily Download & Print

Use the dropdown icon on the Download button to download the PDF or Google Slides version of this resource. 

Additionally, project the worksheet onto a screen and work through it as a class by having students record their answers in their notebooks. 

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