22 terms

5th Grade Government Vocabulary and Types of Government

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Government
An organization of people set up to protect the community and enforce its rules.
Citizen
A person who is recognized as a member of a state or a nation, and pledges loyalty to its government and is entitled to its protection.
Republic
A system where people give representatives authority to vote or act on their behalf.
Representative
A person who represents a community in a legislative body.
Ex: a member of U.S. Congress or an MP in parliment
Democracy
A form of government based on the decisions of the people:
1) and it is exercised directly by them (direct democracy)
2) or by their elected agents under a free electoral system (democratic republic)
Parliamentary Democracy
The people elect their representatives to be members of Parliament, which chooses a Prime Minister.
ex: England
Prime Minister
The chief executive officer of a nation
Parliament
The legislature made up of representatives elected by the people.
Constitutional Monarchy
The same as a parliamentary democracy, but a king or queen is the head of state for ceremonial/traditional purposes.
ex: Canada
Presidential Democracy
A government where the people elect representatives and the president; there is more than one political party.
ex: U.S. and Mexico
Dictatorship
A form of government that has a ruler with complete power and authority.
Dictator
A person with absolute, unrestricted control over a government and nation.
ex: Fidel/Raul Castro (Cuba), Muammar Qaddafi (Libya)
Communist Dictatorship
A system of government controlled by a single political party. The government controls:
-property ownership
-businesses
-education
-social activity
-making laws
-appointing leaders
ex: North Korea, Cuba, U.S.S.R. from 1950-1990
Totalitarian
A government that is ruled by one political party that tries to control every aspect of public and private life.
ex: China
Anarchy
A chaotic situation where there is no government.
Monarchy
A system by which a nation is ruled by a king or queen and the power is passed down through the ruling family.
ex: Jordan
Direct Democracy
Everyone participates in making decisions and takes turns carrying them out. This form of government is no longer practiced today; current ideas of democracy originated from the direct democracy in Athens.
Constitution
A document that defines the organized government of a nation. It guarantees rights to its citizens declares independence from other nations.
Executive Branch of Government
-The President
*Sees that the laws of the U.S. are carried out.
*Can veto a bill which prevents it from becoming a law.
Legislative Branch of Government
-Congress: The House of Representatives and The Senate
*Makes the laws for the U.S.
*Decides how to tax and what to use the money for.
*Can declare war against another country.
Judicial Branch of Government
-Made up of our nation's court system
*Interprets or explains the laws.
*The Supreme Court is the highest court
Checks and Balances
A branch of government may use its powers to check the powers of the other two branches in order to maintain a balance of authority.