Page 3 Lesson 1 Social Studies Bulletin #2 From Confederation to Constitution
Attach Social Studies Bulletin #2 Lesson 1: Social Studies Bulletin #2 – From Confederation to Constitution December 1, 2014 Dear Students and Families, This unit, “From Confederation to Constitution”, will focus on the type of government that developed in the United States. Once the 13 colonies declared their independence from Britain, how would the new government rule this new country? Lord Acton’s famous words about power, “Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely,” was a major fear for many in this new country. How can the new States be protected from the misuse of the central government’s power? How can this new country protect itself from foreign threats and survive? The first phase of this unit will analyze the features of the new government. Then we will examine the need for a better method of governing. What were the problems post-revolutionary America had in managing the affairs of government under the Articles of Confederation? The second phase addresses the weaknesses of the first government as 12 states met to discuss and revise the Articles of Confederation. Students will role play one of the delegates at the Constitutional Convention as they discover some of the points of conflict and disagreement between the Antifederalists and Federalists that shaped our concept of “federalism?” What were the issues creating conflict between the northern and southern states? What was the process of compromise that led to the shaping and adoption of the Constitution? The final phase will look more closely at the document of the U.S. Constitution. James Madison, often called the “Father of the Constitution” once said, “if men were angels, then no government would be necessary.” This unit will place students into a situation where they will take on the roles of law students as they learn the features of the Constitution. As your son or daughter learns about the struggles of ruling our country, discuss issues that frequently create conflict in the American society. How do or can we manage conflict? You can also discuss Madison’s fear about humans and what you think government’s role is in balancing that view. In other words, how do we balance the rights of the individual with the rule of society? You can also discuss issues that relate to our state and those of the whole country and how we struggle to balance those, especially when they appear to be in conflict. And finally, discuss ways that you and your son or daughter have seen the Constitution exist as a “living document.” Look for more Hot Lines about our study of American history this year. I hope you enjoy sharing your child's explorations. 3 R Parent signature by Friday
Previewing the Theme: Democratic Ideals and Conflict L2L2 Between 1776 and 1791, Weaknesses of the Articles ledThe Articles of Confederation established the first government of the United States. Americans to create a new government for the United States. the United States struggled to set up a national government. Articles of Confederation Weaknesses and problems Constitutional Convention Discuss and debate the problems facing our country Improvements Constitution Lesson 1: Social Studies Bulletin #2 – From Confederation to Constitution
In 1789, James Madison and the other framers sought to create __________________________ that _______________________________________. HUMAN NATURE People can be selfish NATURE OF POWER Power corrupts The Constitution “If men were angels, no government would be necessary.” James Madison “Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” Lord Acton Individual Rights and Liberties The Operation of Government a strong central government still protected citizen’s rights and liberties Previewing the Theme: Democratic Ideals and Conflict L2L2 Lesson 1: Social Studies Bulletin #2 – From Confederation to Constitution
W RAP U P Since men are NOT angels, what sort of government did the framers establish? Why is the Constitution considered a “living” document? Humans are imperfect. In fact, they are often greedy and selfish. Any SUCCESSFUL government must not only govern the governed, but also govern itself. The Constitution is flexible because it may be changed (amended). The ideals and principles are universal, apply to many generations. L2L2 Lesson 1: Social Studies Bulletin #2 – From Confederation to Constitution
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