This lesson plan looks at the major ideas in the Declaration of Independence, their origins, the Americans’ key grievances against the King and Parliament, their assertion of sovereignty, and the Declaration’s process of revision.
Students analyze archival cartoons, posters, magazine humor, newspaper articles and poems that reflect the deeply entrenched attitudes and beliefs the early crusaders for women’s rights had to overcome.
The classic American drama Twelve Angry Men can be used to frame discussion of the constitutional right and civic function of the trial by jury. The lesson explores the specific provisions associated with this right as well as the strengths and weaknesses of the system.
What actions are necessary in order to start a new government? What would one of the major concerns be in preserving the new government and country? What would be the role of the leader or president of the country?
The federal judiciary, which includes the Supreme Court as well as the district and circuit courts, is one of three branches of the federal government. This lesson provides an introduction to the Supreme Court.
In this lesson, students examine the critical factors leading to the development of the Federalists and Democratic-Republicans and look at the timeline of key events and issues caused the differences in opinion.
Whether you are spending one class session examining the U.S. Constitution for Constitution Day this September 17th or more, our lesson activities have you covered. Here you will find questions, videos, and access to materials that can be amended and implemented to teach a Constitution Day lesson. An introduction and warm-up are provided, followed by three separate activities that can be used on their own or combined depending on the time allotted for Constitution Day. The lesson includes reflection questions and prompts for closure.
The rivalry between the Federalists and Republicans in the early days of the American Republic was bitter. What were the key positions of the parties? How important to the parties' positions were their basic attitudes toward constitutional interpretation (Federalists, broad interpretation / Democratic-Republicans, strict interpretation)? Which positions of either party resonate in the politics of today?