About This Chapter
Below is a sample breakdown of the U.S. Constitutional Democracy chapter into a 5-day school week. Based on the pace of your course, you may need to adapt the lesson plan to fit your needs.
|Day||Topics||Key Terms and Concepts Covered|
|Monday||Roots of Constitutional democracy||How democratic ideas took root in the Revolutionary War era.|
|Tuesday||The Articles of Confederation||The Articles of Confederation, the Northwest Ordinance, weaknesses of the Articles, Shays' Rebellion|
|Wednesday||The Constitutional Convention and its work||The Constitutional Convention, the Great Compromise, the process of ratification, the birth of political parties|
|Thursday||The U.S. Constitution||Parts of the Constitution and their function, limited government, separation of powers, federalism|
|Friday||Revising the U.S. Constitution||The amendment process, the Bill of Rights|
1. The Spread of Democratic Ideals During the Revolutionary War
Democratic ideals spread before, during and after the American Revolution. This generated the democratic government known in the United States today. This lesson explores the Revolutionary roots of the Constitution.
2. The Articles of Confederation and the Northwest Ordinance
The Articles of Confederation was the new nation's founding document, but the government established under the Articles was too weak. The new central government had no way of raising revenue and no ability to enforce the commitments made by the states. The Northwest Ordinance paved the way for the growth of the new nation.
3. Weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation and Shays Rebellion
The Articles of Confederation were too weak to create an effective government for the new nation. In this lesson, discover how Shays' Rebellion proved that the national government needed to strengthen.
4. The Constitutional Convention: The Great Compromise
The Constitutional Convention was intended to amend the Articles of Confederation. Instead, those in attendance set out to found a republic (the likes of which had never been seen), which is still going strong well over 200 years later. To accomplish this task, compromises had to be made. The Great Compromise designed the bicameral congress the U.S. has today.
5. The Ratification of the Constitution and the New U.S. Government
The U.S. Constitution may be one of the most important documents in history, but it wasn't a sure thing. A lot of debate took place. There were many people passionate about ratification, and many people passionate about ensuring it didn't get ratified. The divide over the Constitution shows us the root of political parties in the U.S.
6. The US Constitution: Preamble, Articles and Amendments
The U.S. Constitution is one of the most important documents in history. It establishes the government of the United States, and its first ten amendments, the Bill of Rights, assures every U.S. citizen the rights we have all come to hold dear.
7. Constitutional Provisions for Limited Government
The United States Constitution lays out a limited federal government. Our federal government is based on federalism, with a separation of powers. This lesson explores constitutional provisions for a limited government.
8. The Process of Amending the Constitution
Amending the United States Constitution is a complicated process. It's only been accomplished 27 times. This lesson outlines the process by which the U.S. Constitution can be amended.
9. The Bill of Rights: The Constitution's First 10 Amendments
The Bill of Rights was pivotal in getting the U.S. Constitution ratified. More importantly, the Bill of Rights guarantees the rights of every citizen of the United States in a way that is nearly unequaled.
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Other chapters within the American Government Syllabus Resource & Lesson Plans course
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- Federalism in the United States Lesson Plans
- U.S. Political Culture, Opinion & Behavior Lesson Plans
- Civil Liberties in American Government Lesson Plans
- Civil Rights in American Government Lesson Plans
- Political Parties in the U.S. Government Lesson Plans
- Interest Groups and American Democracy Lesson Plans
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