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US Constitution Unit Study

Pamela has been homeschooling her 3 children for 20 years and enjoys sharing information she and her family have learned!

constitutionlapbookunit

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
Nationalistic music can teach much about one's country. Find out about patriotic music from the United States.

History Lesson Resources
History is such an important subject ~ what we can learn about the past will help us no doubt in the future. This is a list of teaching resources for History.

Thomas Jefferson drafting the Constitution

Thomas Jefferson drafting the Constitution

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.

Liberty's Kids - "We the People"

Great Books for Kids about American History!

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!

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.
  • Kid's Constitution Unit
    Colorful unit broken into mini lessons & interactive activities.
  • 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 Dictionary
    Find definitions to difficult words here.
  • Glossary
    Find Constitution words.
  • Vocabulary of the Constitution
    Online Game
  • Constitution Day
    Constitution Day Toolkit For Educators The U.S. Constitution & Fascinating Facts About It

"A Mice Way to Learn"

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"!

The Liberty Bell, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

The Liberty Bell, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Schoolhouse Rock! - & Other Fun Educational Videos

Scholastic Books

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".

  • The Cabinet
    Cabinet? Who are they and what do they do? And why is it called a 'cabinet' anyway? (I don't know the answer to this one, so if you do, please let me know! You will make two young men very happy!)
  • President for a Day Game
    What would you do if you were the president?

Rock & Learn with Schoolhouse Rock!

"Father of Our Country" - George Washington

"Father of Our Country" - George Washington

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 ¾ 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.

Founding Father, Benjamin Franklin

Founding Father, Benjamin Franklin

The Contitutional Convention & Signers

Who were these men and what did they discuss at this ever so important convention? Research to find out.

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.

A DVD History of the US Constitution

Betsy Ross

Betsy Ross

Lapbook & Notebooking Materials - Mini books, worksheets, flashcards, and more!

  • 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!

~ The United States Constitution Unit

~ American Government Lapbook Unit

~ American Government Notebook Pack

~ Declaration of Independence Unit

~ Study a President Unit

~ Election Lapbook Curriculum

~ Benjamin Franklin Lapbook Unit

Constitution Webquests

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."
Declaration on Independence Notebook

Declaration on Independence Notebook

Excellent Resources!

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!

Signing the Constitution

Signing the Constitution

© 2009 JoyfulPamela2

Did you enjoy learning something new? :)

JoyfulPamela2 (author) from Pennsylvania, USA on January 31, 2013:

@FastSecrets: Well, I consider myself a perpetual student who keeps searching for more knowledge all the time and have a long way to go before totally understanding governmental documents, but thank you for your kind words. :)

FastSecrets on January 31, 2013:

Itâs nearly impossible to find knowledgeable people about this subject, however, you seem like you know what youâre talking about!

Thanks

Smoak on October 09, 2012:

You have magnificent educational resources here for the little ones. May I suggest one source for the adults in the family to help guide them through the integration of world politics' influence into our four hundred year history for your children as they grow? I recently found https://mises.org/ and am thrilled with the true history by Murray N Rothbard's "Conceived in Liberty" from 1600 and our Pilgrims arrival to 1800 with our New Republic. The shifting and changes of governance made by the colonists and the ten Kings and Queen was very instructional for the future founders. It fully explains why they designed the Declaration of Independence the way that they did and set the original constitution for sovereign Citizens, sovereign States and a very limited federation to protect and support Individualism. We since, with Lincoln's actions against the Southern States, have turned into a democracy of collectivism that grew into an empire fast becoming a dictatorship. Really a very liberating read. It has fully restored my love of country and has shown a means of getting it back. I'll add one more new financial tool that blew my socks off when discovered. http://www.paradigmlife.net/

JoyfulPamela2 (author) from Pennsylvania, USA on October 09, 2012:

@donnetted: Thank you, Donnette!

Donnette Davis from South Africa on October 07, 2012:

Absolutely magnificent lens, thank you. Blessed x

JoyfulPamela2 (author) from Pennsylvania, USA on September 25, 2012:

@SandyMertens: I can only recite the Preamble section by memory, but am interested in continuing to learn more about the rest of it.

Sandy Mertens from Frozen Tundra on September 24, 2012:

I wonder how many people can recite the Constitution. Very resourceful lens.

anonymous on September 09, 2012:

Returning with fresh angel dust for this amazing and important unit study on the US Constitution.

Fay Favored from USA on August 15, 2012:

Your lenses are always full of interesting things. Well done.

Lorna from USA on August 08, 2012:

Thanks for this great resource, very informative lens.

anonymous on April 08, 2012:

I agree at young age, children should learn forms of government and laws for them to create right decisions in the future.

low iron

KenRhoden on March 16, 2012:

Excellent material here! As a practicing attorney I give time to the local Justice Teaching program that helps educate school children about the Constitution. It is a worthwhile and important endeavor! I hope to continue teaching about the constitution when/if I am elected as the Public Defender of Brevard County! www.kenrhoden.com

nyclittleitaly on January 24, 2012:

great lens

peacefullyhappy on January 20, 2012:

Wow! This is really fabulous! Thank you so much for putting all of that information in one place!

Miha Gasper from Ljubljana, Slovenia, EU on December 29, 2011:

Amazing resource, thank you!

anonymous on December 08, 2011:

Great lens! My sister is a history fan - she would love this! :)

Shannon from Florida on December 05, 2011:

Another fabulous lens! You are so generous to share such excellent work!

misterjake on December 01, 2011:

Even though I am not American but I find your lens very informative. Keep up the great job. I am new here if you don't mind whenever you have a chance please check out my lens and leave a comment. Thanks.

TZiggy on October 24, 2011:

You deserve a purple star for this lens. I would have gotten a gold star in school if I had this written out like this for my notes.

sushilkin lm on October 18, 2011:

Thanks for Sharing informative lens !!

Heather Burns from Wexford, Ireland on October 14, 2011:

Such an important thing to teach our young! Love that you made this page!

anonymous on October 03, 2011:

I'm glad this lens won a purple star, very well done.

Barbara Isbill from New Market Tn 37820 on September 30, 2011:

Ditto! Important lessons for a;; of us!

kelli320 on September 26, 2011:

This is a good lens for children and adults, too. Thank you for your extensive knowledge.

mrducksmrnot on September 16, 2011:

I love this lens. I started one back in July 2011 and have been working on it everyday. A lot to cover on this subject for sure. Thanks for posting your lens as it is a great tool for the young children and teenagers today. The public schools just don't teach anything anymore. Wishing you a wonderful US Constitution Day tomorrow. I'm handing out pocket editions from the NCSS site at nccs.net Come by my site also and please feel free to comment. A++ lens

jopalei on September 07, 2011:

I am not a teacher, nor do I have children, but this is an excellent Lens. I'd be interested in your opinions on my new Lens: Food Police. Thanks.

JoyfulPamela2 (author) from Pennsylvania, USA on September 07, 2011:

@happynutritionist: Thanks, Claudia! :)

happynutritionist on September 05, 2011:

Never too old to learn about the constitution, I think a lot of adults are forgetting how significant and important it is. Blessed!

Barbara Radisavljevic from Templeton, CA on September 04, 2011:

What a lot of work you have put into making this great resource. I'm going to share it

JoyfulPamela2 (author) from Pennsylvania, USA on August 08, 2011:

Hi! Thanks for telling me know about the link. :) I had trouble finding it myself at first, but finally found a link indirectly to get people there. I first listed this about 2 1/2 years ago, so I suspect they changed the site around a little bit. Hope you can find and use it now. Let me know if it still doesn't work and I will try to find another way.

mrducksmrnot on August 07, 2011:

Link to USCIS comes back as below:

The OID specified in the request parameters is either null or invalid.

otherwise a great site

AJ from North Carolina on July 10, 2011:

Excellent lens, with so many resources!

lasertek lm on May 18, 2011:

nice links for this topic. Lensroll ed this to my lens!

anonymous on March 12, 2011:

Wonderfully done my dear! You spend countless hours on each excellent unit and it shows.

CruiseReady from East Central Florida on February 04, 2011:

Awsome lens! We the People must never cease to cherish the liberty we have that is guaranteed by our founding documents!

photofk3 on February 01, 2011:

I deeply respect the values and ideals represented in the US Constitution.

Barb McCoy on January 28, 2011:

I was doing a Google search for a friend and found your lapbook lens! It is just what she was looking for and I think it is a great resource for many aspects of government study.

Adding to my favorites and blessing.

***Blessed by an Angel***

HorseAndPony LM on January 26, 2011:

Great resource. This will be very useful to us. Thanks!

Kate Loving Shenk from Lancaster PA on September 27, 2010:

Excellent work! Kudos!

R D Ramos on July 03, 2010:

Great unit! Packed with information. Thanks!

tandemonimom lm on April 29, 2010:

This looks like an amazing unit study. Thanks for putting all this work in and sharing it with us!

FYI The Homeschool Club is now open for business - future homeschool lenses built at HomeschoolClub/HQ will have the new club header!

writernewbie on January 08, 2010:

Wow, Pamela! This is fantastic! So much time and effort obviously went in to making this the most informational and interesting lens on the topic. Very well done! I will refer to your lenses in the future for inspiration. Thanks so much for this! :)

poutine on January 03, 2010:

Quite an impressive and educational lens.

A big 5++ for the work that you put into this.

I am bookmarking it for future reference.

Poutine

Lee Hansen from Vermont on October 25, 2009:

Impressive educational lens - good for all Americans to know, not just children.

anonymous on July 01, 2009:

You have done fabulous work! It's an inspiration to increase my own lenses! I'll be putting this on our Tea Party site. Teaching the Constitution to children and creating constitutional voters is imperative if we are to maintain our liberty. http://hrteaparty.com

Heidi Reina from USA on June 12, 2009:

Lots of really terrific interactive resources. Thanks for such interactively educational lens on the Constitution.

anonymous on June 07, 2009:

Oh my! I can't thank you enough for all your wonderful information! We will be studying this in the fall and this will be a fantastic resource!

Jimmie Quick from Memphis, TN, USA on June 07, 2009:

Pamela! Welcome to Squidoo! This is WONDERFUL! What a thorough resource you've put together. And thanks for all the freebies. I'm totally impressed with your work here!

You're officially blessed!

anonymous on June 07, 2009:

thank you thank you thank you we are going to study the constitution next school year and you have saved me so much time. everything is so orderly and easy to use. i wish that every lapbook site was set up like this one. kudos for a job well done.

anonymous on June 07, 2009:

I am amazed at how much info you have accumulated and put together! Thank you so much for sharing it!!!

anonymous on June 06, 2009:

Wow! Nicely done and so thorough. This is wonderful. Thank you!