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Course: What is an American?

Lesson: The Cost of Government

And so, my fellow Americans, ask not what your country can do for you; ask what you can do for your country. John Fitzgerald Kennedy
Competency Objectives: Understanding the purpose of taxes. Suggested Criteria for Success: Learners tell the importance of April 15. Learners identify the types of taxes that federal, state, and local governments assess. Learners tell how taxes are used. Learners explain their responsibility for paying taxes. payroll tax income tax sales tax estate tax

Suggested ocabu!ary: taxes property tax Suggested "ateria!s:

pens or pencils and paper one or more of the following  computers with internet connection or handouts of selected materials printed from http: www.irs.ustreas.gov app understanding!axes index."sp. #$ee $uggested %esources below.& !his site has lesson plans on taxes that are available online or as downloadable print resources. 'ontent is divided into two segments: #1& !he (ow of !axes and #)& !he *hy of !axes. +ownloads are in ,+- format, with the exception of a series of ,ower ,oint presentations.  handout for %eading Activity entitled Where #oes $our Ta% "oney Go? #$ee $uggested %esources below.& $eparate the Reading Activity from the instructions before you copy and distribute the handout to students. !o update the figures in this lesson to the most current data, use A Citizen s !uide to the Federal "udget for the most recent year that is provided. #$ee $uggested %esources below.& http: www.irs.ustreas.gov app understanding!axes index."sp 'lic. on !eacher $ite for the /%$ tax education program entitled #nderstanding $a%es. 'ontent is divided into !he (ows of !axes and !he *hys of !axes. Under !he *hys of !axes, !heme 1, clic. on &esson ' (hy )ay $a%es* !hen clic. on )ower )oint )resentation +our Role as a $a%,ayer.

Suggested &esources:

!he 'ost of 0overnment

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http: www.handsonenglish.com curr 1arch21.html An 3$L Lesson called (here -oes +our $a% .oney !o* #or go to http: www.handsonenglish.com , and clic. on !ry a current events activity near the bottom of the page. !hen clic. on where your ta%es go #1arch 21& in the column on the left of the page that comes up. http: www.whitehouse.gov 'lic. on /ite .a, #top of screen& and scroll down to 0ffice of .anagement and "udget #under !overnment heading&. Use the $earch function on this page to loo. up A Citizen s !uide to the Federal "udget. !he following gave direct access at the time of this writing: http: www.whitehouse.gov omb budget fy)22) guide21.html http: www.whitehouse.gov omb budget fy)22) guide.html Adapt to include to the most recent figures available to you. http: uscis.gov graphics 'lic. on 1mmigration /ervices and "enefits #left side of page&. !hen clic. on 2aturalization #left side of page&. 4ow clic. on 3ligi4ility and $esting. -rom this location scroll down and • 'lic. on -ownload #nited /tates 5istory /tudy !uide for Civics 3%am. #125 pages& • 'lic. on -ownload #nited /tates !overnment /tructure /tudy !uide For Civics 3%am. #56 pages& • 'lic. on '66 /am,le #/ 5istory and !overnment 7uestions with Answers. #7 pages& Some Suggested Steps 'nstructiona! "ateria!s( Use the resources above to the extent of your students8 interests and abilities to cover the following points: • *hat is the purpose of taxes9 • *hat types of taxes are there9 • *hat is my responsibility for taxes9 C!ass )rob!em So!ving( :our city has ;122,222 in tax revenues and a city controversy over the use of these resources. $hould the money be used to build a new softball field or to purchase trees for the city par.9 +evelop a list of pros and cons for each idea. %emember to thin. about how each would benefit the community, and decide which way you thin. the city should use its tax money. 4<!3: :ou may find it advantageous to change the problem for discussion to something currently pertinent in your local setting. Write $our Congressman. (elp students brainstorm about their =uestions on tax and money issues. List the =uestions on the board. $ome starter examples follow: (ow are my federal taxes used9 (ow will the war with /ra= affect how much money / will pay in taxes9 *hy do / have to pay $ocial $ecurity and 1edicare taxes9 $elect a sing!e issue that is of interest to many of your students and write a class letter to your state representative to as. about it. >e sure to explain that your class is studying 3nglish as a $econd Language. $end the letter and ma.e sure you include a return address. :ou should receive a reply. *ourna! Wor+( Using your local newspaper, circle or cut out articles that show each of the following taxes in action: -ederal taxes: 4ational +efense $tate taxes: 3ducation Local taxes: -ire ,rotection, ,olice ,rotection *rite a sentence or paragraph to tell how you personally benefit from the following services that taxes pay for: national defense, postal service, education, fire protection, police protection. /n what other ways do you benefit from taxes9

!he 'ost of 0overnment

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