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Gail S Hennessey's picture
Gail Skroback Hennessey taught for over 33 years, teaching sixth grade in all but two years. She earned a BA in early secondary education with a concentration in social studies and an MST in social...
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Constitution Day is Coming!


Constitution Day
Each year, Constitution Day is celebrated on September 17th. This is the date, in 1787, when delegates to the Constitutional Convention, signed the Constitution. They had met for 116 days, at the State House(now called Independence Hall), in Philadelphia, PA. If Constitutional Day falls on a Sunday, as it did in 2017, the official observation is the following day. Constitution Day is also called Citizenship Day.  It’s a day to celebrate this important document of our nation!
Did You Know?
1. Did you know that Ben Franklin arrived at the Grand Convention in Philadelphia on a sedan chair? Four prisoners from the local Philadelphia jail carried Franklin on the chair.
2. Before deciding on Mr. President, names for George Washington, the first leader of the United States, included “His Most Benign Highness” and “His Highness, the President of the United States of America and Protector of their Liberties.”
3. Philadelphia, the largest and most modern of cities at the time of the Convention, had a population of 40,000.  Gravel was used to cover the cobblestone streets to make it less noisy for the meetings.
4. It took 116 days to complete the draft of the document called the Constitution.
5. To date, only ONE amendment to the constitution has been removed(repealed). The 18th Amendment(1918) which abolished the making, sale and transportation of alcohol, was repealed in 1933.
6. Each night, the Constitution is lowered into a specially made vault for its protection.
7. George Washington announced the first national “Thanksgiving Day”, November 26, 1789, to “give thanks” for the creating of the Constitution.
8. The words “democracy” and “God” do not appear in the document of the Constitution.
9. Eighty-one year old Ben Franklin cried as he signed the Constitution.
10. James Madison, who would become the 4th President of the United States, was called the “Father of the Constitution”. 
Teacher Page:
Things to do:
  1. Have students pretend they are the Constitution on display at the National Archives. Tell a day in your life as people come to see you. What do you hear? See? feel? Click here to learn more:
  2. This link explains the Bill of Rights for kids:   Groups of students could be assigned one of the rights and make a poster.  Have students write a paragraph explaining which right they feel is most important and why.
  3. Have students create posters or greeting cards for Constitution Day.
*Check out my Ms. Bie Ografee Play on James Madison, Father of the Constitution: Play on James Madison
Gail Skroback Hennessey