Constitution & Bill of Rights
- National Constitution Center:http://ratify.constitutioncenter.org/constitution/index_no_flash.php The National Constitution Center presents an interactive Constitution page. Students may explore the Constitution by keyword, subject, and Supreme Court cases. FABULOUS Resource!
- FindLaw: The Constitution: http://www.findlaw.com/casecode/constitution/ Includes annotations for each Article, Section & Amendment. Annotations explain the history and related issues.
- Emory Law School: http://www.law.emory.edu/FEDERAL/usconst.html Includes the entire Constitution and various amendments never ratified.
- Bill of Rights Institute, founding documents:http://www.billofrightsinstitute.org/page.aspx?pid=500
- Bill of Rights in the news: http://billofrightsinstitute.org/resources/educator-resources/headlines/
- First Amendment Center: http://www.firstamendmentcenter.org/ “Features comprehensive research coverage of key First Amendment issues and topics, daily First Amendment news, a unique First Amendment Library and guest analyses by respected legal specialists.”
- The President and the Constitution: http://www.articleii.org/ From the Bill or Rights Institute, this newly created website has an interactive piece related to Article II.
The Declaration of Independence:
- The Declaration of Independence (info about signers, history of Declaration; online version; great links): http://www.ushistory.org/declaration/index.htm.
- Declaring Independence: Drafting the Documents (chronology of events leading to the Declaration of Independence):http://lcweb.loc.gov/exhibits/declara/declara1.html.
- A Multitude of Amendments, Alterations and Additions: The Declaration of Independence (reviews the writing and printing of the Declaration):http://www.cr.nps.gov/history/online_books/dube/inde2.htm
- The National Archives has many Declaration Resources, including commentaries, high-resolution digital images, and a “signers gallery”: http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/declaration.html
- Our Documents: Declaration of Independence (background information about Declaration; view or print reproductions): http://www.ourdocuments.gov/doc.php?flash=true&doc=2
History & other documents
- The Digital Vaults of the National Archives: http://www.digitalvaults.org/ Access to 1000*s of primary documents.
- The American Presidency Project (UCSB. Immense resource/database on documents, and commentary related to the presidency): http://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/
- Resources on the Constitutional Convention (day by day; “four act” synopsis; interactive map; interactive painting; details on delegates; selected correspondence; etc.)http://www.teachingamericanhistory.org/convention/
- Federalist papers: http://www.foundingfathers.info/federalistpapers/fedindex.htm
- Anti-federalist Papers: http://www.wepin.com/articles/afp/
- Ben*s Guide to Government: http://bensguide.gpo.gov/6-8/index.html Many topics related to our government. Different sites have information at various reading levels, including elementary, middle school & high school. Great for basic information about people, history and philosophy.
- Quotes by the Founding Fathers: http://www.marksquotes.com/Founding-Fathers/
- Oregon Bluebook: Oregon Constitution – Article 1 Sec 1-33 (rights)
- Center on Congress: http://www.centeroncongress.org/. Exceptional resource on the Legislative branch
Applying the Constitution: Issues & Supreme Court Cases
- The United States Supreme Court: http://www.supremecourt.gov/ This is the official site of the US Supreme Court. It gives general information on the Supreme Court as an institution, its traditions, procedures, and the Justices.
- The Annenberg Classroom: http://www.annenbergclassroom.org/ The Constitution and the three branches. Explanations, videos, etc. Video on Presidential Signing Statements!.
- The Annenberg Classroom Speak Outs: http://www.annenbergclassroom.org/speakouts Applying the Constitution to today’s issues, including: affirmative action, civil liberties in war, death penalty, free speech, gun control, juvenile justice.
- Landmark Supreme Court Cases from the Bill of Rights Institute: http://www.billofrightsinstitute.org/page.aspx?pid=469 This site is remarkable in that it sorts the cases by topic, eg, Freedom of Speech, Federalism, Students and the Supreme Court… The cases don’t come with lots of information, but it’s a great starting point!
- Ben’s Guide to Government. Oh my, this is a fabulous site on US government. Information is organized by education level, so you can choose grades 6-8 or grades 9-12, depending on what kind of a challenge you’re looking for.
- Landmark Supreme Court Cases – http://www.streetlaw.org/en/landmark.aspxStreetlaw and the Supreme Court Historical Society. Includes numerous resources on over a dozen landmark cases, including: Brown v. Board of Education, Landmark Supreme Court ... June 12, 1954; Dred Scott v Sandford - 1954; Plessy v. Ferguson – 1896; United States v. Nixon – 1974; and many more.
- Landmark Supreme Court Cases from LectLaw.com: http://www.lectlaw.com/tcas.htm
- Historic Supreme Court Cases http://www.socialstudieshelp.com/EdLaw.htm from the Social Studies Help Center
- Find Law’s Constitutional Law Center: Supreme Court Overviewhttp://supreme.lp.findlaw.com/supreme_court/index.html and Supreme Court: Landmark Decisions -- A CENTURY OF CHANGE (1856-1955) http://supreme.lp.findlaw.com/supreme_court/landmark.html
- Library Think Quest: Lists and provides overview of landmark Supreme Court Cases
- The Supreme Court of the United States (summaries of numerous cases; search engine)http://www.oyez.org/
- Current Supreme Court docket (cases on the docket, cases recently decided):http://otd.oyez.org/
- Blog of the Supreme Court of the US: http://www.scotusblog.com/wp/
- Landmark Supreme Court cases: www.landmarkcases.org
- Find Law site on the Supreme Court: http://supreme.lp.findlaw.com/
- Legal news, including international: http://jurist.org/
- Supreme Court History (via its Historical Society): http://www.supremecourthistory.org/
- New York Times site on the Supreme Court: articles on decisions, arguments, etc. Information about each of the justices.
Links for our Congressional Hearings: relevant topics, current events, etc.
PRESIDENTIAL SIGNING STATEMENTS
(Executive Power, checks and balances):
Signing statements: presidential declaration signed when the president signs new laws that state that he has the power to set aside the laws when they conflict with his legal interpretation of the Constitution.
- 4 videos on one site: Annenberg Classroom - HELPFUL! http://www.annenbergclassroom.org/page/presidential-signing-statements
- A statement by the American Bar Association against signing statements: http://www.abanow.org/2012/01/aba-presidential-signing-statements-are-contrary-to-the-rule-of-law/
- “Bush challenges hundreds of laws”
- Examples of President Bush’s Signing Statements (Boston Globe article)
- Background and current info: http://www.csmonitor.com/tags/topic/Guantanamo%20Bay
- ACLU Urges closure of Guantanamo Bay (American Civil Liberties Union always sides with liberty over security.) http://www.aclu.org/close-guantanamo
Supreme Court and Guantanamo Bay:
The following two articles discuss the Supreme Court's decision in June 2012 to reject appeals in seven habeas corpus appeals involving detainees. This decision was a reversal of a 5-4 2008 decision.
- ACLU information on the Patriot Act. The American Civil Liberties Union always argues for individual liberty over security.
- White House information on the Patriot Act
- American Library Association information on the Patriot Act
- Perhaps the best source for information on the major political parties in the U.S.: http://2012election.procon.org/view.resource.php?resourceID=004483
- Links to the websites for dozens of political parties:http://votesmart.org/political-parties
- Flocab provides a simple overview if the democratic and republican parties:http://www.flocabulary.com/political-parties/
- A quick history of the development of political parties:http://www.ushistory.org/gov/5a.asp
- Spark Notes has a comprehensive and comprehendible overview of U.S. political parties: http://www.sparknotes.com/us-government-and-politics/american-government/political-parties/summary.html
- The bibliography offers some excellent resources as well:http://www.sparknotes.com/us-government-and-politics/american-government/political-parties/bibliography.html
- The Pew Research center conducts polls and analyzes them. This February poll asked Americans how they view the democratic and republican parties:http://www.people-press.org/2013/02/26/gop-seen-as-principled-but-out-of-touch-and-too-extreme/. They have many more studies on people's views of the parties. Click on "topics" to access.
JUDICIAL REVIEW and an INDEPENDENT JUDICIARY
The Annenberg Foundation has many sources on the judicial branch. Scroll to the bottom of the page and you'll find many additional and helpful resources.
- This 34 minute documentary examines two Supreme Court cases, Cherokee Nation v. Georgia (1831) and Cooper v. Aaron (1958), which defined our understanding of the role of the judiciary....http://www.annenbergclassroom.org/pages.aspx?name=an-independent-judiciary&AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1
- Justices Stephen G. Breyer, Anthony M. Kennedy and Sandra Day O’Connor and students discuss why an independent judiciary is necessary and how the Constitution safeguards the role of judges (32 minutes).http://www.annenbergclassroom.org/page/conversation-judicial-independence
- A video made by the Annenberg Foundation but found on The Constitution Project website: history, explanation and video about an independent judiciary: http://www.theconstitutionproject.com/portfolio/independent-judiciary/