Gonzales v. Raich (2005)

Do federal drug laws exceed the Commerce Clause when applied to intrastate possession of medical marijuana, authorized by state law? This case summary shows how the Supreme Court answered that question in 2005.

  • Resource Type: Lesson Plans, Modules (Teaching Unit)
  • Subject: Judicial Branch/Supreme Court
  • Grades: 9, 10, 11, 12

U.S. v. Morrison (2000)

Does Congress have the authority to enact the Violence Against Women Act under either the Commerce Clause or Fourteenth Amendment? This case summary shows how the Supreme Court answered this question in 2000.

  • Resource Type: Lesson Plans, Modules (Teaching Unit)
  • Subject: Judicial Branch/Supreme Court
  • Grades: 9, 10, 11, 12

U.S. v. Lopez (1995)

Did Congress have the power to pass the Gun Free School Zones Act? After a 12th-grade student was arrested under the act, he and his lawyers challenged the constitutionality of the law.

  • Resource Type: Primary Sources, Research (Digests of Primary Sources)
  • Subject: Judicial Branch/Supreme Court
  • Grades: 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

The Pursuit of Justice

The Pursuit of Justice book, written by Kermit L. Hall and John J. Patrick, analyzes 30 Supreme Court cases chosen by a group of Supreme Court justices and leading civics educators as the most important for American citizens to understand. An additional 100 significant cases included in state history and civics standards are summarized. The complete book or individuals chapters can be downloaded.

  • Resource Type: Books
  • Subject: Judicial Branch/Supreme Court
  • Grades: 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

Weights and Measures

In this lesson, students will come to understand why having common weights and measures, imposed and enforced by the government, is important in day-to-day life. They will discuss how weights and measures permeate the sciences, industry, and commerce, discovering the importance of such standards in their own lives. In the process, students will identify concepts underlying the need for weights and measures, such as private property and fair treatment under the law.

  • Resource Type: Lesson Plans, Modules (Teaching Unit)
  • Subject: Citizenship
  • Grades: 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

Enterprise and Commerce: A Lesson on “The Man That Corrupted Hadleyburg” by Mark Twain

Is the commercial spirit good for civic virtue? Consider the status of virtue in a democratic society devoted to gain and self-interest as editors Amy A. Kass and Leon R. Kass discuss Mark Twain’s story with David Brooks (New York Times). Includes a discussion guide and model conversation.

  • Resource Type: Lesson Plans, Primary Sources, Video
  • Subject: Citizenship
  • Grades: 9, 10, 11, 12

Constitutional Index – International Commerce Clause

The Constitutional Index breaks down the U.S. Constitution by Section, Amendment, and Clause and contains broader topics and themes. These are used to cross-reference Library resources in an effort to annotate constitutional history.

  • Resource Type: Primary Sources, Research (Digests of Primary Sources)
  • Subject: Legislative Branch/Congress
  • Grades: 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12