Foundations of American Government
Session 6: Preamble
- Copy of the Preamble to the Constitution of the United States
- Computer with Internet access (optional)
- Begin class with a choral reading of the Preamble. Explain that it is one of the most widely recognized portions of any of the historical documents and it has great importance.
- Discuss the purposes of the Constitution of the United States as stated in the Preamble.
- Give students copies of the Preamble that are triple spaced. Ask students to strike through the complex wording in the Preamble and substitute simple language for complex words.
- When everyone is finished, ask for volunteers to read the new versions of the Preamble.
- Lead a discussion in which students compare and contrast the Preamble to the beginning of the Declaration of Independence.
- Have groups of students present one additional goal of the new government they would have included in the Preamble to the Constitution.
- For homework, ask students to study the checks and balances chart in their text.
- Optional activity: Have students complete the “Preamble Scramble” at Ben's Guide to Government for Kids. <http://bensguide.gpo.gov/9-12/games/preamble_scramble.html>.