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  Georgia Performance Standard

SS4H5 The student will analyze the challenges faced by the new nation.

a. Identify the weaknesses of the government established by the Articles of Confederation.

b. Identify the major leaders of the Constitutional Convention (James Madison and Benjamin Franklin) and describe the major issues they debated, including the rights of states, the Great Compromise, and slavery.

c. Identify the three branches of the U. S. government as outlined by the Constitution, describe what they do, how they relate to each other (checks and balances and separation of power), and how they relate to the states.

d. Identify and explain the rights in the Bill of Rights, describe how the Bill of Rights places limits on the power of government, and explain the reasons for its inclusion in the Constitution in 1791.

e. Describe the causes and events of the War of 1812; include the burning of the Capitol and the White House What was/is the importance of the Bill of Rights.

Essential Question: What is/was the importance of the Bill of Rights?

Students will be able to identify why the Bill of Rights is important for our freedoms today.

Bill of Rights Lesson Plan

Students will:

  1. Write some of the important rights included in the Bill of Rights.


  1. Copy of Bill of Rights
  2. Bill of Rights Test (PDF)
  3. Bill of Rights Test Answers (PDF)

Step 1: We begin the lesson by explaining and discussing: when the idea of having a government over the people came up and the Constitution was being written, people got very nervous that the government would take too much power and people would lose important rights.

Discussion Question: "In our country, we have added to the Constitution amendments that change the Constitution. The first 10 of these were added right away and are called the Bill of Rights. Because of the Bill of Rights, we enjoy many freedoms that other countries do not have. What are some things we are free to do that some people in other countries are not?"

Students might come up with freedom of religion, freedom to say what you think about the government, freedom to have a jury trial, freedom to have your privacy protected, the necessity of warrants, etc.

Step 2: We will discuss the simplified version of the Bill of Rights and go over what each amendment means. Then, each child will choose one amendment to illustrate. On a blank piece of white paper the student will draw out a picture describing what each amendment means. These pictures will be hung up around the classroom inorder for the student to have a visual representation of each amendment.

Step 3: Next, we will go over the Bill of Rights Test. They will work in partners to complete this worksheet and then we will go over the answers in class.



After the students complete the worksheet. They will be asked to share what they have learned during class with their family at home and this will be discussed the next day in class.

Help Further The Discussion....

Do the students understand the various rights? Can they use their sheet to help locate which rights apply? Do the students discuss their answers using the Bill of Rights?

Do they seem to understand how important, and different, our rights are from the rights of people in many other countries?


The Bill of Rights Pictures, Images and Photos