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Constitution Day Resources


Encouraging Student Understanding of Negotiation and the Value of Notetaking during the 1787 Constitutional Convention

The two featured pages of James Madison’s handwritten notes from the Constitutional Convention can spark an engaging lesson on the different plans originally presented for structuring the U.S. government.
Lee Ann Potter, Social Education, September 2019

Teaching the Constitution…Virtually!

The National Archives has several programs to help teach about the Constitution, including an online archive for accessing and downloading countless primary documents, and also virtual classroom visits from an Archives educator.
Jenny Sweeney, Social Education, September 2019

Motivating Student Appreciation of the Federalist Papers with a Handwritten Note by Thomas Jefferson

An annotation by Thomas Jefferson in his copy of The Federalist can fuel intriguing questions for student exploration on The Federalist Papers and the meaning of the term federalist.
Kaleena Black, Social Education, September 2018

"Voting Rights and Literacy Tests"

R. Z. Seitz and P. T. Chandler, MLL, Sept. 2016

Teaching Privacy in the 21st Century

—Odette Edbrooke and Meg Leta Ambrose, Social Education, September 2012


Lesson Plans using Documents from the Constitutional Convention

Teaching the C3 Framework: Questions that Compel and Support

Social Education, September 2017 (See page 202)
by S.G. Grant, Kathy Swan, and John Lee

Three by Stacie Fieth and Neil Deason Social Education, September 2005.

The First Page of the Official Journal of the Constitutional Convention—Just the Tip of a Records Iceberg!

—Lee Ann Potter, Social Education, September 2012


Other Online Resources

The following articles are available to NCSS members. In addition to these articles, NCSS members can access many Lessons on the Law columns that deal with constitutional issues, as well as the full collection NCSS journal back issues.

The Constitutional Amendment Process

-Kahlil Chism Social Education (Nov/Dec 2005).

The Words We Live By: The Constitution in Context

-Linda Monk Social Education (Nov/Dec 2003).

Population Estimates Used by Congress during the Constitutional Convention

-Lee Ann Potter Social Education, September 2006.

Constitution Day: Start the School Year with Civics

-Eli Lesser Social Education, September 2006

An Internet Guide to Teaching the Constitution

-C. Frederick Risinger Social Education, September 2005.

Living Democracy: How Constitution High School Molds Better Citizens

-Marc Brasoff Social Education (September 2009).

What Having Students 'Write the Constitution' Taught Me

-Thomas Ladenburg Middle Level Learning (May/June 2008).

Frederick Douglass, The Constitution and Slavery: A Classroom Debate

-Vanessa Rodriguez Middle Level Learning (September 2008).