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Interview With the
Signers of the
Constitution

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Subject:

 
Social Sciences,
Arts & Humanities,
Ed. Technology
Grade:6-8

Brief Description

Students work in small groups to develop three questions that a newspaper reporter assigned to cover the signing of the Constitution might have asked each of the following signers of the Constitution: George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, James Madison, and Alexander Hamilton.

Objectives

Students demonstrate critical thinking skills in developing interview questions. Students work together in cooperative groups.

Keywords

Constitution, signers, newspaper, reporter, interview, Washington, Franklin, Madison, Hamilton

Materials Needed

paper, pens or pencils; student-researched library sources or computers with Internet access

Lesson Plan

  • Introduction: Ask students to name some of signers of the Constitution.
  • Divide the class into four groups. Assign each group one of the following signers: George Washington, Benjamin Franklin, James Madison, or Alexander Hamilton.
  • Challenge students to imagine that they are newspaper reporters in 1787 covering the signing of the Constitution. They meet with each of the four signers noted above and ask three questions. Have each group brainstorm the questions they would ask each signer.
  • Tell students that before they can ask the questions, they must research information about each person and about the Constitution. Have students use various library sources or use the following sites as starting points for their research.
    The Signers of the Constitution
    The Founding Fathers
    Creating a Constitution
    A More Perfect Union: The Creation of the U.S. Constitution
    The United States Constitution

Variation for younger students: Assign one signer to the entire class, and have the students work together to complete the lesson.

Assessment

Have students present their questions to the class. As a follow-up, have each student take on the role of a signer and answer the three questions developed by each group.

Lesson Plan Source

Education World

Submitted By

Lois Lewis

National Standards

Social Sciences:
NSS-USH.5-12.3

Language Arts:
NL-ENG.K-12.3
NL-ENG.K-12.4
NL-ENG.K-12.5
NL-ENG.K-12.6
NL-ENG.K-12.7
NL-ENG.K-12.8

Originally published 07/03/2000
Last updated 08/19/2010

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