What is Constitution Day?
The signing of the U.S. Constitution on September 17, 1787, by the Founding Fathers is one of the most important and influential events in American history, establishing the many rights and freedoms “We the People” enjoy today.
September 16, 2016 marks the 230th anniversary of this remarkable day in U.S. History.
How will you recognize Constitution Day in your classroom?
A Constitution Day Implementation Guide from NASPA (an association of student affairs administrators in higher education) offers excellent suggestions for Constitution Day programming. In addition to very doable programming suggestions, the guide includes background information on Constitution Day, statistics regarding constitutional knowledge vs. pop culture, and links to additional resources.
Lesson Plans/ResourcesGeneral Classroom Resources
- Center For Education in Law and Democracy
- The National Archives
- The National Constitution Center
- The Signers of the Constitution
- Interactive Constitution
- Constitution Interactive Timeline
General Information About the Constitution
- U.S. Constitution Online
- U.S. Constitution at Wikipedia
- The National Archives
- The Library Of Congress
Lesson Plan Ideas
Interview With the Signers of the Constitution: Students work in small groups to develop three questions that a newspaper reporter assigned to cover the signing of the Constitution might have asked signers George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, James Madison, and Alexander Hamilton. (Grades 5-12)
Charting the Three Branches of Government: Students work in groups to create charts showing the structure and functions of the three branches of government as outlined in the first three articles to the Constitution. (Grades 5-12)
Create A New Amendment: Students gain a greater understanding of the amendments to the Constitution. After studying the amendments to the Constitution, students propose a new amendment. (Grades 5-12)
Presidential Powers: Students gain a greater understanding of the amendments to the Constitution. After studying the amendments to the Constitution, students propose a new amendment. (Grades 5-12)
Explaining the Bill of Rights: Students work in groups to rewrite the Bill of Rights in their own words. (Grades 5-12)
President James Madison: Father of the U.S. Constitution: Find ten errors of spelling, grammar, or punctuation in this paragraph about President James Madison. Printable work sheet included. (Grades 3-8)
Balancing Three Branches at Once: Using primary source documents, your students can see clear demonstrations of how one branch of our government can check another. (Grades 3-5)
The Preamble to the Constitution: How Do You Make a More Perfect Union?: Archival materials and other resources help students understand why the Founders felt a need to establish a more perfect Union and how they proposed to accomplish such a weighty task. (Grades 3-5)
Constitution Booklet: Print and put together your own Constitution booklet.