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?
This film explores the First Amendment right of the “people peaceably to assemble” through the lens of the U.S. Supreme Court case National Socialist Party of America v. Village of Skokie. The legal fight between neo-Nazis and Holocaust survivors over a planned march in a predominantly Jewish community led to a ruling that said the neo-Nazis could not be banned from marching peacefully because of the content of their message.
Is the United States’ democracy healthy? This activity includes a deliberation reading and glossary, as well as accompanying handouts to give students additional information on the topic and to guide them through the deliberation process from planning to reflection. Deliberation teaches people how to discuss controversial issues by carefully considering multiple perspectives and searching for consensus. In preparation for deliberations, all participants read common, balanced background information on the issue. During the discourse, they offer arguments for each position on a contested public issue, first drawing from the text and then bringing in their own experiences.
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 an interview with Sal, John Dickerson, a correspondent for CBS’s “60 Minutes,” shares his views about the importance of studying US history, government and civics.
The first lesson in our AP Government and Politics course focuses on the philosophical ideals that have shaped the US government. Teachers can use this lesson as a supplemental resource, helping students digest difficult philosophical texts and gain a better understanding of the democratic ideals at the heart of the US government.