This lesson explores the challenges the United States faced as a result of the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, and examines the government’s response through the lens of protection and civil liberties. Students will consider the long-term effects of the emergency measures, their consequences and constitutionality, and how they might inform the balance between security and liberty today.
Use this information graphic to easily understand the House of Representatives and Senate and the articles and amendments in the Constitution.
In the summer of 1787, delegates gathered for a convention in Philadelphia, with the goal of revising the Articles of Confederation, the nation’s existing governing document, which wasn’t really working. Instead, they wrote a whole new document, which created a revolutionary form of government: the U.S. Constitution. Read more about the summer of 1787 in the National Constitution Center’s learning module.
This lesson will focus on freedom of assembly, as found in the First Amendment. Students will consider the importance of the right to assemble and protest by analyzing cases where First Amendment rights were in question. Using the case National Socialist Party of America v. Village of Skokie, students will consider if the government is ever allowed to control the ability to express ideas in public because viewpoints are controversial, offensive, or painful. Students will use primary sources and Supreme Court cases to consider whether the courts made the correct decision in the National Socialist Party v. Skokie case. Students will be able to form an opinion on the essential question: Is the government ever justified to restrict the freedom to assemble?
September 17 is Constitution Day! We have created different writing prompts along with the writing space for students. These writing prompts can be used as individual assignments, at writing stations, or even for group discussions!
Three writing prompts for Constitution Day are provided for middle school and high school. The prompts can be used as a formal essay, at writing stations, or as a “discuss and write.”
Here’s a fun activity for all ages with vocabulary that is tied to Constitution Day! Answers are provided as well!
Want your students to have their own Bill of Rights booklet? This booklet has the verbiage from the Bill of Rights and a space for students to be able to paraphrase what each amendment means.
This Bill of Rights Booklet is targeted for younger elementary students. Each amendment has an overview of how the amendment protects the citizens.
In this lesson, students will learn about the individual rights that are included in the Bill of Rights and current issues relating to them. Students will use C-SPAN Classroom’s Constitution Clips to explore what each of these rights mean and determine how these rights apply to current events in America. This lesson works well with classes with one-to-one devices or in flipped classrooms.