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Chapter 3: The Constitution

Web Activity Lesson Plans

In this chapter students read about the Constitutional Convention and the structure of the Constitution itself. During one hot summer, fifty-five men argued, compromised, and created our nation's plan of government. Despite the changes that have taken place as the United States has grown in size, population, power, and technology, that document still provides an effective form of government.

Lesson Description
Students will visit the National Archives and Records Administration's Web site on the Constitution of the United States to read an article describing the events of the Constitutional Convention. They will also select one of the delegates and read his biography. Finally, they will write a speech that their chosen delegate might have made about one of the important issues of the Convention. Students might be encouraged to present their speeches in class, or to pair up for debate on the issues.

Instructional Objectives
  1. The learner will be able to describe the important issues of the Constitutional Convention.
  2. The learner will be able to discuss one issue from the point of view of one Convention delegate.
Student Web Activity Answers
  1. 2
  2. He was suffering from rheumatism, his brother had died, he needed to oversee Mount Vernon, and he had doubts about the convention.
  3. 74; 55
  4. Rhode Island; the state was dominated by men who highly favored paper currency, low taxes, and popular government, and so they refused to participate in what they saw as a conspiracy to overthrow the established government.
  5. Students' speeches will vary.
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