No Vehicles in the Park

In this lesson, students will apply a general law – “no vehicles in the park” – to specific circumstances in considering the language of the law and its intended objective. The task will require that they interpret the law to allow for certain circumstances – an ambulance carrying a dying patient, for example. The lesson ends with students rewriting the law to more clearly reflect the intent of the lawmakers.

Landmark Supreme Court Cases – Freedom of Speech: General

From the first days of American history until today, the Supreme Court has been pivotal in interpreting the Constitution and shaping America’s constitutional republic. Read summaries of the majority ruling in landmark Supreme Court cases that have had an impact on our rights as citizens.

Win the White House (Game and Teacher Guide)

In Win the White House, your students take on the role of presidential candidate from the primary season all the way through to the general election. The player strategically manages time and resources to gain control of as many electoral votes as possible over a ten-week campaign. This can only be done by effectively communicating his or her position on issues, and mastering media and public appearances.

Grades 6, 7, 8
Executive Branch/Presidency
Games

Lesson Plan for Aria: A Memoir of a Bilingual Childhood by Richard Rodriguez

This lesson is designed to be used in a unit on immigrant experiences or integration of peoples, but it can easily be adapted for general discussions on characterization and character changes in a story. The son of Mexican immigrants, Richard Rodriguez grew up in a mixed-race neighborhood in California. In this opening chapter of his autobiography, Hunger of Memory, Rodriguez describes the tensions of navigating the Spanish-speaking world of his home and the English-speaking world of school.

National Identity and Why It Matters: A Lesson Plan

Why do people need national identity and attachment? Explore the meaning and significance of national identity in general and American identity in particular as editors Amy A. Kass and Leon R. Kass discuss Edward Everett Hale’s story, “A Man without a Country,” with Wilfred M. McClay (University of Oklahoma). Includes a discussion guide and model conversation.

What Fundamental Ideas About Government Do Americans Share?

In this lesson, you will examine some of the fundamental ideas about government that are contained in the Declaration of Independence and the Preamble to the U.S. Constitution. When you have completed this lesson, you should be able to explain those ideas and identify which ideas the class holds in common. If you support these ideas, you will be given an opportunity to go online and add your signature to those of the Founders of our nation who signed the original documents.

Grades 6-12
Foundations of Democracy
Lesson Plans