Lesson Plans

The Declaration of Independence: Created Equal?

Through discussion and primary source analysis, students investigate Thomas Jefferson's efforts to deal with the complex issues of equality and slavery in the Declaration of Independence. After, students rewrite the Declaration of Independence (or portions of it) to fit a contemporary society and may also stage a mock trial with the students playing the roles of Jefferson and others and Library of Congress primary sources serving as evidence.

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Monumental Men

George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, and Theodore Roosevelt made significant contributions to the United States. Through the lens of both primary and secondary sources, students learn about the characters and contributions of these presidents and determine for themselves the qualities and accomplishments that make someone, including themselves, worthy of a lasting tribute. The lesson also includes extension activities for ELA, math, science, and music connections.

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Faction and Democracy

Students write a multi-paragraph argumentative letter in opposition to a proposed bipartisan Senate bill to eliminate factions outside of the two major parties based on the ideas put forth by James Madison in Federalist No. 10, George Washington in his Farewell Address, and Thomas Jefferson in his First Inaugural Address.

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