Civics & Economicsby Matthew Caggia

Unit 2: The Constitution

Chapters 3 & 4

In this unit we will focus on the development of the Constitution from the shortcomings of the Articles of Confederation, the struggles of the Constitutional Convention, and the debate over the Constitution to the document itself. Our focus will be on the important ideas and concepts of government included in the document as well as the individual parts from the Preamble through the Amendments. To support this we will also examine a few Supreme Court Cases that have helped to define the meaning of the Constitution over time.

Study Tools

Online Textbook Resources

These pages contain the links to the online content for student practice. It includes Chapter Overviews, Web Activities, Self-Check Quizzes, ePuzzles and Games, Vocabulary Flashcards, Charts in Motion (to accompany diagrams in the textbook), and Interactive Graphic Organizers.


Link to Quizlet! Vocabulary is the key to understanding any subject. Once you can break down the barrier of language the ideas and concepts are wide open. Here you can find the vocabulary for the unit to practice by using online flash cards and by practicing online generated vocabulary quizzes.

Goals & Principles in the Constitution

While the Constitution may have been a bundle of compromises, it holds some lofty goals and embodies some very important principles, all of which make the US Constitution a model for government around the world. It is a model, not because it is a perfect government, far from it, but because of the way it sets out to protect the people and the way it creates a system by which the people can hold the power.

The Bill of Rights

Our most basic rights and liberties were added to the Constitution after it was ratified as a compromise by the Federalists in order to get the Anti-Federalists (Democratic Republicans) to support the document.

Extending the Bill of Rights

While the Bill of Rights protects people's most basic rights in a democratic society, not all of those protection were realized by all segments of the population. Over the course of 220 years the ideas embodied in the first ten Amendments have been extended to ensure more inclusion into our democratic society.


Bad Romance: Women's Suffrage

This parody of Lady Gaga's "Bad Romance" entertains while it teaches about the struggle for Women's Suffrage and the 19th Amendment. If you like Lady Gaga's music, then this will be a special treat! Enjoy!

Schoolhouse Rock: The Preamble

"The first part of the Constitution is called 'The Preamble' and tells what the founding fathers set out to do." And with a cute jingle this video briefly illustrates and explains each of the six goals of the Constitution.

Schoolhouse Rock: Three-Ring Government

This video illustrates the idea of Separation of Power in the United States. It shows how our government has three branches, each with distinct duties, including the task of watching over the the other two - checks and balances.


Copyright M. Caggia 2013