Lessons on the constitution of the United States.

Read the Module Teaching Guide here.

News of a New Government
This lesson on the Constitution centers on the story of David Claypoole and John Dunlap, who scooped the world when they published the new plan of government in their newspaper, the Pennsylvania Packet, on September 19, 1787.  

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The First Constitution
Learn about the strengths and weaknesses of the first constitution, the Articles of Confederation. Hear the story from Cesar Prince, a free Black man and veteran of the Revolutionary War.   Teacher Resources
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Federalists vs. Anti-Federalists
Learn about the debate over adding a Bill of Rights to the constitution. What is a Federalist, and who is that Publius guy?   Teacher Resources
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Suing for Her Freedom: Mum Bett and the Massachussetts Bill of Rights
Elizabeth Freeman, formerly known as Mum Bett, was the first slave to successfully sue for her freedom under the Massachusetts state constitution in 1781. She tells the story of her life in the household of Colonel Ashley, and how she gained the courage to demand her rights by listening to conversations about freedom and liberty in Ashley’s home.  

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The Story of John Peter Zenger
John Peter Zenger was a printer in New York who went to jail for printing unfavorable information about the governor - even though it was true! Zenger’s son tells the story of how his father was acquitted when Andrew Hamilton came up with a bold defense that questioned the role of the press in a free society.   Teacher Resources
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My Name Is Phebe Attucks
  Phebe's brother, Crispus Attucks, escaped from slavery to become a whaler. After returning to Boston, Attucks was the first American to be killed in the cause of independence, in the event that Paul Revere called “the Boston Massacre.”   Teacher Resources
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Rights of the Accused
Earl Clarence Gideon tells the story of how the Supreme Court overturned his conviction for stealing because he had not been informed of his rights. Learn about important court cases that changed the history of law enforcement in the United States.  

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Segregation and the Constitution
This lesson tells the story of segregation and the Constitution from 1846 to 1964. It uses multiple perspectives to highlight important legal cases that shaped the cause of civil rights for over 100 years. The cases include Dred Scott, Plessy v. Ferguson, and Brown v. Board of Education. The narrators of this lesson are civil rights leaders, Supreme Court justices, and politicians.   Teacher Resources
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The Long Road to Women's Suffrage
  In 1848, Charlotte Woodward set out for Seneca Falls, New York, to attend a convention that would herald the start of the Women’s Suffrage movement. Seventy years later Charlotte was the only original member of the Seneca Falls Convention who lived to see women gain the right to vote; however, she was unable to vote herself because she was ill on Election Day, 1920.   Teacher Resources
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