US Constitution Unit Study
Learning about the Constitution
As young future American voters, children need to learn about forms of government, laws, and choices we can make in America. The following is a unit my children and I studied to help them make wise decisions in the coming years.
I hope you have as much fun as we did learning about this important subject! =D
Graphic created by JoyfulPamela.
Our Constitution Lapbook - Free Student & Teacher Materials!
Constitution Day is September 17th!
- The United States Constitution Lapbook Study Unit
These are the materials that my family used including lesson plans, a resource list, notebook pages for notes and copywork, lapbook minit books, charts and outlines, flashcards, pockets, and games (matching, puzzle, a timeline game, and a board game
- **The Teaching Home**
Constitution related newsletters containing units, lesson suggestions, links, and resources: # 253 - Constitution Week (222, 191, and 131 are very similar) # 245 - Christian Citizenship # 236 - President's Day # 222 - US Constitution # 203 - Presiden
Companion History Lessons - Lessons, lapbook & notebook materials, resources.
Patriotic Music Lesson
A country's music can tell you much about the country. Music can shape one's emotions, sense of nationalism, and give a feeling of pride of one's home. Our l...
United States Presidents
Learning about the leaders of a country help one to know the history and character of a people. As we study the presidents, we not only learn about the peopl...
History Lesson Resources
History is such an important subject ~ what we can learn about the past will help us no doubt in the future. To be honest, I never liked studying history or ...
Election Unit Study
Presidential election years are exciting in the United States because we have the honor of selecting the people we feel are best suited to guide our country....
United States Documents - Law Before the Constitution
Our government system in America can be traced back to England in 1215 when King John of England was "encouraged" by force to sign the Magna Carta which entitled jury trials, due process of law, and representation in law making bodies for all English citizens. This led to the formation of English Parliament over the years. The English Petition of Rights (1628) and The English Bill of Rights (1689) were predecessors to the United States Bill of Rights.
What forms of law and government existed in America before the Constitution was written? There were several document which created laws for the colonists ~ The Mayflower Compact, Colonial Charters & Constitutions, The Declaration of Independence, and The Articles of Confederation.
- The Citizen's Almanac
This resource by the U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) has information about the Mayflower Compact, The Declaration of Independence, The Articles of Confederation, The Federalist Papers, The Constitution, The Bill of Rights, and The
- American Document Info
Historical information on many American documents.
- Document Comparisons
Use to fill in venn graph.
- Constitution vs. Articles of Confederation
A comparison chart to study the differences.
Liberty's Kids - "We the People"
Great Kid's Books
Children ages elementary through middle school will enjoy these books about the Constitution! We found these at our local library.
There are so many wonderful books for children about the Constitution, the government, and American history. Here are some of my favorites!
- "We the Kids: The Preamble to the Constitution of the United States" by David Catrow,
- "A More Perfect Union: The Story of Our Constitution" by Betsy Maestro,
- "Shh! We're Writing the Constitution" by Jean Fritz and Tomie dePaola,
- "If You Were There When They Signed the Constitution" by Elizabeth Levy and Joan Holub
- "Constitution Translated for Kids" by Cathy Travis
- "The Declaration of Independence: How 13 Colonies Became the United States" by Syl Sobel
- "The U.S. Constitution and You" by Syl Sobel
- "The Bill of Rights: Protecting Our Freedom Then and Now" by Syl Sobel
- "How the U.S. Government Works" by Syl Sobel
- "Presidential Elections: And Other Cool Facts" by Syl Sobel
The Preamble - We the People ...
Starting this document are these well known words which bring us together as a nation.
"We the people of the United States in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America."
Such thought and care must have been put into each word in forming this new government. The meaning behind them is overwhelming beautiful!
- Preamble Hand Motions
Use these hand motions to help you memorize the preamble!
Declaration & Preamble Videos
Studying the Constitution
There are tons of fabulous resources for your study of the Constitution, government, and civics! Since I have children in elementary, middle, and high school, I tried to find a large range of comprehension levels for them.
- US Constitution Online for Kids
A great place to start your study of the Constitution is at US Constitution Online for Kids! It is very well researched and easy to maneuver through! ~ Documents: (at the bottom of the page) leads you to copies of the Constitution, The Declaration of
- Ben's Guide to US Government
Wonderful site!! Grade leveled sections that easily describe the government for kids.
- American Government
Mr. Donn's has so many excellent resources!! Check here to get going on your study ~ Teacher lesson plans and links, kid friendly sites, activities and games, power point presentations, clipart, etc.
- American Heritage Education Foundation
Awesome materials! Free American History lesson plans for K - 12 that are downloadable or on CD-ROM to order. This link is to the high school page, but you may click onto elementary or middle school resources on the left side. ~ Some of the lessons:
- Kid's Constitution Unit
Colorful unit broken into mini lessons & interactive activities.
- Interactive US History Lessons
Lessons, Activities, Games, & Extension Activities Topics: Bill of Rights, Constitutional Amendments, Founders of America, Famous Presidents, and Modern Presidents
- Constitution Guide
Click on the articles you want at the top to learn about the meanings of that section.
- Constitution Info
Introduction; Read the Constitution, Bill of Rights, and the Amendments; Glossary; Activity Worksheets include:Make a Classroom Constitution or Bill of Rights, 3 Branches of Government Graphic, Cloze Activity, Mini US Constitution Book, Word Piece Pu
- Constitution Lesson Plans
From Center for Civic Education - Several downloadable PDF booklets and plans for K-12, audio lessons also.
- Constitution Facts
Click under 'Fun Zone' for puzzles, quizzes, quotes, treasure hunts, glossary, dates, and where to send for a free copy of the Constitution.
- Democracy & Government
Lessons from Scholastic
- United States Government
Nicely written articles about aspects of the government - some include worksheets and ideas.
- Constitution Word Hunt
- Constitution Dictionary
Find definitions to difficult words here.
Find Constitution words.
- Vocabulary of the Constitution
- Constitution Day
Constitution Day Toolkit For Educators The U.S. Constitution & Fascinating Facts About It
"A Mice Way to Learn"
This series of books is so cute and fun for your younger students to enjoy and learn about government at the same time. Look also for Woodrow for President: A Tail of Voting, Campaigns, Woodrow, the White House Mouse, Marshall, the Courthouse Mouse: A Tail of the U.S. Supreme Court, and A Mice Way to Learn About the Government Curriculum Guide.
Legislative Branch - Article I of the Constitution
The Legislative Branch makes the laws.
~ See the 2 L's there? Legislative - Law
See below for two super Schoolhouse Rock vids
"3 Ring Government" and "How a Bill Becomes a Law"!
Schoolhouse Rock! - & Other Fun Educational Videos
This is only one from the fabulous Scholastic "True Books" series where you can find all the facts for kids (and adults)! Others in the series are: The Bill of Rights, The Presidency, The Supreme Court, and The Congress. The pictures are colorful and eye catching while the text is informative yet simply stated for all ages.
Executive Branch - Article II of the Constitution
The President, Vice President, and their advisors enforce the laws.
See above for another Schoolhouse Rock video, "Electoral College".
Rock & Learn with Schoolhouse Rock!
What a great way to learn and retain important facts through catchy tunes! If you are in my generation, I'm sure you learned many educational concepts via catchy tunes from Schoohouse Rock that you still remember. Now with modern technology, my students and your can memorize the Preamble to the Constitution, learn about the congress with "I'm Just a Bill ... up on Capitol Hill" and others. This set contains historical themes in "America Rock". There are also recordings which contain other subjects such as science and language arts so you can get your money's worth on multiple subjects. (Amazon even has a School House Rock Songbook by Hal Leonard publishers written for piano / guitar / vocal if you prefer to sing it live.)
Judicial Branch - Article III of the Constitution
The Judicial Branch interprets or explains the laws; they decide if something is constitutional or not. The Supreme Court is the highest court in the country. Cases usually start on the local and state level and build their way up if the original rulings are appealed. One chief justice is resides above the eight associate judges who also work on the cases. The judges are chosen by the President, and approved by the Congress. Their appointment is for life.
A Judiciary Branch mini book is in the lapbook pieces file.
What else does it say? - Articles IV, V, VI, and VII
IV ~ Full Faith & Credit Clause: States work together in accepting one anothers laws.
V ~ Amendments - Changing the Constitution: In order for the Constitution to be changed or amended, 2/3 of the legislature must propose the amendment, and Â¾ of the states must ratify or approve it.
VI ~ Supremacy Clause: There is no higher law in the land than the Constitution.
VII ~ Ratification: When the constitution was first introduced to the states in 1787, 9 out of the 13 colonies had to ratify or approve it before it became law.
Living Document: A living document is a document that changes and grows with the nation.
The Contitutional Convention & Signers
Who were these men and what did they discuss at this ever so important convention? Research to find out.
- Biographies for Kids
Wonderfully written biographical stories with several print and online activities! ~ James Madison "Father of the Constitution", George Washington "Father of Our Country", Benjamin Franklin
- The Convention
Events leading to the convention and various plans that were drawn up during this time.
- The Federalists & Anti-Federalists
The different ideas about forming and running the government.
- American Founders
Thorough biographies for study
- The Framers of the Constitution
Framers, founders, signers? Biographies with only a few sentences.
- Signers of the Constitution
Check out the mural and drawing naming the gentlemen with their pictures.
The Bill of Rights & Amendments
The Bill of Rights gives us so many freedoms that we take for granted! I am so grateful for the freedom of religion, press, speech, assembly, petition, and the others that our country has fought hard for!
Special thanks to those who serve our country to bring us these liberties!! :)
The Constitution has been amended or changed a total of 27 times to help the nation grow.
- Bill of Rights Mini Books
5 pages of free mini books from the "Yee Shall Know" website.
- Bill of Rights, Constitutional Amendments, Founders of America
~ Interactive Lessons, Activities, Games, & Extension Activities~ These 3 wonderful lessons are free, but the site has many more with a subscription.
- Bill of Rights
Activities from Congress for Kids
- Bill of Rights
Lessons & Links from Mr. Donn
- Bill of Rights
- Amendments to the Constitution
Lessons and resources again from Mr. Donn
A DVD History of the US Constitution
Over 4 hours of footage help all who wish to learn move about the Constitution's history.
Lapbook & Notebooking Materials - Mini books, worksheets, flashcards, and more!
- Constitution Lapbook
A wonderful lapbook by Homeschool Helper!
- Constitution Lapbook Pictures
Colorful picutures of a Constitution lapbook
- Constitution Flashcards
Constitution Players Flashcards & a mini book about the Consitution from Highland Hitchco Homeschool - scroll to the bottom
- James Madison
Pictures and ideas for Madison books
- Coloring Pages & Document Pictures
These could be cut out into a fun shape books or cover pages! ~ Independence Hall, We the People, Washington's Chair, Capitol Building, The White House, The Supreme Court ~ Pictures of the real United States Documents to place in your books.
- Constitution & Bill of Rights Notebooking Pages
Made by Jimmie (about 1/3 of the way down the page on the left)
- Constitution Activities
Shh, We're Writing the Constitution (Jean Fritz) Book Report Form, US Constitution KWL Chart, Preamble Puzzle, Government Word Game, We the students Writing Prompt
- Election Activities
Vote Bookmarks, Compare the Candidates, Crossword Puzzle, Ballot Form, Current Events, Voting Booth Project, Presidential Qualities Writing Prompt, others.
- History Worksheets from TLS Books
Constitutional Crossword Puzzle, Bill of Rights Word Search, President Word Searches, Independence Day Writing, Liberty Bell, Flag Facts, Declaration of Independence Vocabulary, Presidents Coloring Book
Hands of a Child Units
I love units, lapbooks, and project packs from Hands of a Child! I have used several of them. They contain easy to read information pages followed by several mini book templates for your students to take notes about what they learned!
~ American Government Lapbook Unit
~ American Government Notebook Pack
~ Declaration of Independence Unit
~ Study a President Unit
~ Election Lapbook Curriculum
~ Benjamin Franklin Lapbook Unit
Webquests can be such a fun way to learn about a topic and strengthen valuable internet research skills as well. Enjoy your quest!
- The Constitution
"You are a citizen in the brand new United States of America after the Revolutionary War. Now you have become frustrated by the inefficient new government in the United States. You have been invited to attend a constitutional convention in Philadelph
- We Were There
"You find yourself in late 18th century United States. Everything is just like you learned in Social Studies class, except many of the technologies of today exist. You will assume one of the following roles: 1. You are one of the 55 delegates selecte
- US Constitution
"Assume the persona of a someone in your assigned branch. Research information about the U.S. Constitution Article that deals with your branch. Create a visual to represent your branch."
- Shh! We're Writing the Constitution
"After reading and discussing Shh! We're Writing the Constitution by Jean Fritz, you will compose a constitution. You will participate in a constitutional convention when you ratify your constitution."
- Roadmap to the Constitution
"Everything that you've ever wanted to know about the U.S. Constitution is only a click away! This site is dedicated to providing students of all kinds with knowledge of the United States Constitution and Bill of Rights."
Find these awesome Declaration on Independence notebook pages from Notebooking Nook.
Review & Evaluation - Here are some ideas for checking your students comprehension!
Walk Through the Constitution - Board game that my children made for review. (You may download it for free at one of the above links to our blog.)
Preamble ~ use the "Preamble Order Game" to practice the preamble - write the preamble by memory on the notebook page - sing the "Preamble" Song by Schoolhouse Rock
Constitution Timeline Chart- match and sequence events! Fill in the blank charts with events.
Constitution Vocabulary - play a matching game.
Amendment Challenge - name as many of the amendments in the Bill of Rights and others that you can in 60 seconds!
Share your lapbook with friends and relatives telling them about the things you've learned!
Review your Constitution Outline.
Notebook Pages ~ write a paragraph about main points of the Constitution; write a paragraph with suggestions for a better government ~ check below for other writing ideas.
Check the Constitution Resource Guide for extra websites, lesson plans, book list, worksheets, webquests, quizzes, games, and other interesting things to add to your study and lapbook / notebook!
Write a letter to your state or national representatives thanking them for their work; or, request information pamphlets about the Constitution or state and national government.
Visit one of your local government buildings or representative offices.
Write a play about the making of the Constitution; act it out with your friends or family.
Compose a song about the Bill of Rights or any aspect of the Constitution.
Play some of the online games listed here!
- Writing Prompts
Many fun writing ideas from Holiday Zone!
- Civics Flash Cards
(USCIS) The cards are nicely done! There are almost 100 cards to print out about government. We used these to study, review, and play with our board game.
- Constitution Review
Constitution Activities, Glossary, Links, and Quizzes
- Constitution Quizzes
Hard but good! Choose your level, topic, and number of questions.
- Constitution Tests
Online & Printable Tests