Teaching Guide

Please refer to the module Teaching Guide for additional information.

Lesson summary
Instructional use
Pre-lesson activity
Standards covered by this lesson
Selected bibliography
Assessment

Lesson summary


The Federalists used the press to present arguments in favor of ratifying the Constitution through publishing a series of essays called the Federalist Papers. A key issue in ratifying the Constitution was agreeing to add a Bill of Rights. In this lesson the author of the papers, Publius, describes the differing points of view and behind-the-scenes political agendas of the Federalists and Anti-Federalists. (Publius was later revealed to be a pen name for Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, and James Madison.) Several Articles of the Constitution are featured as part of the debate, as is the Bill of Rights.

Instructional use

Please refer to the module Teaching Guide for instructional use scenarios.

Pre-lesson activity

It is recommended that teachers preview the lesson to identify concepts that may need to be reviewed before students begin. Concepts include federalism, states' rights, the Bill of Rights, and political parties. Teachers may also wish to create a vocabulary/spelling list for terms found in this lesson.

Teachers may also wish to review the biographies of the historical figures studied in the lesson to provide anecdotal or secondary information. It would also be helpful to review the historical period discussed in the lesson (1783-1800).

A question to get students thinking is to ask how much do you think the press influences public opinion about important matters of government?

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Standards covered by this lesson


Refer to the module Teaching Guide for list a Language Arts goals covered by all WebDocent lessons.

Grades 7-8 Social Science and American History

Illinois State Goal 14

Understand, analyze, and compare political systems with an emphasis on the United States.   

Illinois State Goal 15

Understand, analyze, and compare economic systems with an emphasis on the United States.

Illinois State Goal 16

Understand and analyze events, trends, individuals, and movements shaping the history of Illinois, the United States, and other nations.

The final project (Additional Activities) covers the following Language Arts goals:

Illinois State Goal 4

Listen and speak effectively in a variety of situations.

Illinois State Goal 5

Use the language arts for inquiry and research to acquire, organize, analyze, evaluate, and communicate information.

Selected bibliography

Alfred E. Young and Terry J. Fife, with Mary E. Janzen. We the People: Voices and Images of the New Nation. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1993.

http://www.usconstitution.net

Assessment


Refer to the module Teaching Guide for an explanation of the online journal for assessment purposes.

Following the lesson you might divide the class into two groups (Federalists and Anti-Federalists) to debate one of the issues raised in the lesson, such as the need for a Bill of Rights.

See the Additional Activities page for a final project suggestion. Students will need a print-out of their online journal questions for these activities.

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