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Independence

Was the Constitution Pro-Slavery? The Changing View of Frederick Douglass

By Robert Cohen
Many have questioned whether the document on which our nation is based sanctioned slavery. But renowned abolitionist Frederick Douglass, who originally condemned the Constitution, came to view it in a much different light.

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Why Did the Colonists Fight When They Were Safe, Prosperous, and Free?

When historical events are framed as mysteries, students gain fresh insights into U.S. history topics, including the American Revolution.
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Rough Journal Page Documenting Ratification and Final Page of the Treaty of Paris, 1783

The featured documents highlight for students the significance of the Treaty of Paris, not only in ending the Revolutionary War, but also in transforming British North America.
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Prequel to Independence: Who Fired the Shot Heard Round the World? (Teaching with Documents)

--Annie Davis The 1775 deposition from a militia commander at Lexington, featured in this article, can be used to spark student inquiry about why the American colonials decided to go to war. http://www.socialstudies.org/system/files/publications/se/7904/7904188.pdf
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Deepening Student Understanding of the Debate over the Constitution through a Description of a Grand Procession (Sources and Strategies)

--Stephen Wesson The featured document from a parade to celebrate the Constitution can serve as an engaging entry point into a lesson about the founding document and the campaign for ratification in 1788. http://socialstudies.org/system/files/publications/se/7904/7904183.pdf
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Asking Students to Compare the Value of Information in Different Sources about the Same Event (Sources and Strategies)

--Scott M. Waring
A close look at the spy map that helped George Washington win the Battle of Princeton can place students in the role of historians as they analyze the map and other sources to shed light on this historic event.
* http://www.socialstudies.org/system/files/publications/se/7901/79011506.pdf

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Free Press in a Constitutional Democracy

--Christine Lucianek
Students will acquire a deeper understanding of freedom of the press when they consider the context for its inclusion in the First Amendment and examine its implications in the Internet age.
* http://www.socialstudies.org/system/files/publications/se/7806/7806298.pdf

Magna Carta at 800: Ten Key Questions Answered (Lessons on the Law)

--Howard Kaplan
As the 800th anniversary of Magna Carta approaches, Lessons on the Law provides an overview of the “Great Charter” and identifies teaching materials to engage students.
* http://www.socialstudies.org/system/files/publications/se/7806/7806265.pdf

Exploring the Legacy of Magna Carta with Students through Historic Images (Sources and Strategies)

--Stephen Wesson
The two featured portraits of Revolutionary-era writer John Dickinson next to a book titled “Magna Charta,” can launch an enlightening lesson on the thirteenth-century charter´s influence on America´s founding documents.
* http://socialstudies.org/system/files/publications/se/7806/7806261.pdf

Mapping Early American History: Beyond What Happened Where

--Andrew J. Milson
The three highlighted early American historical maps will provide students with important insight into the geographical understanding of people in the past and the implications of this limited knowledge.
* http://www.socialstudies.org/system/files/publications/se/7805/780514216...

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