1. Introduction to the National Archives
2. Main Activity: Students decide whether historical examples from the holdings of the National Archives show the Bill of Rights in action or in trouble. Students will analyze primary sources and a few student volunteers will take part in acting out a short scene.
3. Discussion: Why should students care about the Bill of Rights?
4. Conclusion and time for Q&A
By completing this program, students will be better able to:
1. Explain the rights and limitations found within the Bill of Rights
2. Understand the impact the Bill of Rights has on their own lives
3. Analyze primary sources
National Center for History in the Schools History Standards
United States History Content Standards for Grades 5-12 United States Era 3 Standard 3B
The student understands the guarantees of the Bill of Rights and its continuing significance.
National Standards for Civics and Government
The American idea of constitutional government. Students should be able to explain how specific provisions of the United States Constitution, including the Bill of Rights, limit the powers of government in order to protect the rights of individuals, e.g., habeas corpus; trial by jury; ex post facto; freedom of religion, speech, press, and assembly; equal protection of the law; due process of law; right to counsel .
Political rights. Students should be able to evaluate, take, and defend positions on issues involving political rights.
The place of law in American society. Students should be able to explain the importance of law in the American constitutional system. To achieve this standard, students should be able to explain the importance of the rule of law in establishing limits on both those who govern and the governed protecting individual rights.
Civic responsibilities. Students should be able to evaluate, take, and defend positions on the importance of civic responsibilities to the individual and society.
Common Core State Standards
Cite the textual evidence that most strongly supports an analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.
Engage effectively in a range of collaborative discussions (one-on-one, in groups, and teacher-led) with diverse partners on grade 8 topics, texts, and issues, building on others' ideas and expressing their own clearly.
Come to discussions prepared, having read or researched material under study; explicitly draw on that preparation by referring to evidence on the topic, text, or issue to probe and reflect on ideas under discussion.
Analyze the purpose of information presented in diverse media and formats (e.g., visually, quantitatively, orally) and evaluate the motives (e.g., social, commercial, political) behind its presentation.
Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources.
Determine the central ideas or information of a primary or secondary source; provide an accurate summary of the source distinct from prior knowledge or opinions.