Kindergarten New York


This inquiry engages kindergartners in exploring the various ways people interact with and act upon rules and laws in society. The compelling question “Are all rules good rules?” assumes that while students generally enter school with some concept of rules and what it means to follow or break them, they may not yet understand who makes rules and how they change.


Compelling Question:

Are All Rules Good Rules?

Staging the Question:

Share the compelling question with the class and have students brainstorm initial responses. Teachers should chart the responses in order to compare them with students’ ideas at the end of the inquiry.

Supporting Question Who makes the rules?

Formative Task Create and label a wheel-spoke chart identifying the roles of rule makers and authority figures.

Sources Source A: Image bank: Rule makers
Source B: Image bank: Rules created by children
Source C: Branches of Government video


Supporting Question What does it mean to follow the rules?

Formative Task Illustrate and label a two-sided picture showing a rule being followed on one side and a rule not being followed on the opposite side.

Sources Source A: Image bank: Signs indicating rules


Supporting Question Can the rules ever change?

Formative Task Complete a three-column chart showing the situation before a related law was changed, after the law was changed, and why the law was changed.

Sources Source A: “Voting and the Law” article
Source B: ”Minimum Wage Update”

Summative Performance Task

Argument: Are all rules good rules? Construct an argument supported with evidence that addresses the compelling question.
Extension: Create a digital recording of the oral argument.

Taking Informed Action

Understand: Review the class and school rules.
Assess: Determine whether the classroom or school needs additional or revised rules.
Act: Create and/or revise rules for the classroom or school and educate others about how to follow the
new rules.