Constitution - Civic Glossary | Youth Civic Hub

Civic term:



A foundational document that outlines the structure of government, establishes the rights of citizens, and sets limits on governmental power, serving as the supreme law of the land.


The U.S. Constitution protects the fundamental rights of New Yorkers.The constitutional framework ensures democratic governance in NYC, so we can contune to vote in a representative democracy.


A constitution is like the rule book for a country’s government. It lays out the basic rules and principles that guide how a country operates. This includes everything from what rights citizens have, like freedom of speech and religion, to how leaders like the president and members of Congress are chosen and what powers they have. The U.S. Constitution, for instance, starts with the Preamble which sets the purpose of the document and is followed by articles and amendments that outline the structure of the government, the powers of different branches, and the rights of the citizens. The U.S. Constitution is especially famous for its first ten amendments, known as the Bill of Rights, which guarantee key freedoms like freedom of speech and fair legal treatment. It's a living document, which means it can be amended, allowing it to evolve with the changing needs and values of the country.