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					     The Constitution of the United
        States of America
               Creating Instructional Unit Resource Guides
Based on Principles of Universal Design and Differentiated Instruction

      The U.S. Constitution
      Eighth Grade
      Susan Benson, Michelle Frossard,
      Denise Harris, Frank Perkins, and
        Wendy Warthan
      Avon Middle School
                        Authors’ Preamble
Our Fellow Educators,

Eight weeks and five days ago our group embarked on a journey to learn more about
the Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and how to implement it in our middle school
classrooms. We have considered that all students are not created equally. Thus, we must
utilize resources that will assist us in differentiating curriculum, instruction, and

As an integration trainer, media specialist, special educator, and general education
teacher, we strongly believe that students have the right to bear instructional tools to
motivate, to enhance their learning, and to address their individual needs. We will do this
by offering resources that would lend themselves in conducting a unit on the Declaration
of Independence. By empowering the student through UDL, we hope the student will
gain a sense of “independence” while exploring one of the most important documents in
the history of the United States of America.

We mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor,

Susan Benson                  sbenson@avon.k12.in.us
Michelle Frossard             mfrossard@avon.k12.in.us
Denise Harris                 dharris@avon.k12.in.us
Wendy Warthan                 wwarthan@avon.k12.in.us
        Indiana State Standards

Avon Middle School Eighth Grade Social Studies Standard

8.1.6- Identify the steps in the implementation of the federal government
under the United States Constitution, including the First and Second
Congresses of the United States.

8.2.3- Identify and explain the relationship between rights and
responsibilities of citizenship in the United States.

8.4.1- Identify economic factors contributing to the European exploration
and colonization of North America and the American Revolution, and the
drafting of the Constitution of the United States of America.

                    Developing Educational Standards


                    Indiana Learning Standards

                    ISTE – National Educational
                    Technology Standards
                    Planning Monument

                   Some budding voters will know…
                      • Specific cases of checks and balances
                      • How each branch functions today
                      • Evaluate the first draft of constitution for
                         relevance to today’s society and the changes
                         that have been made
                      • Exam how each member of the Constitutional
                         Convention influenced the document and what
                         became of them after it was written

          Most budding voters will know…
            • How each branch keeps each other’s power in balance
            • The purpose of each branch of government
            • There were two basic issues facing the constitution
            • The organization of the Constitution and the purpose of each part
            • Specific members of the Constitutional Convention and the
                problems facing each

All budding voters will know…
    • Our government runs on a system of checks and balances.
    • There are three branches of government.
    • There are three main parts to the constitution.
    • The constitution is the foundation of our modern government.
    • It was common men who wrote the document.
                Teacher Library
What materials and resources will be useful for

This site is chalked full of informational videos on every content
area imaginable with specific standard-based instructional videos
that are humorous and includes key points for learning.
Subscription is based on the number of learners and is well-worth
the cost.

We found this song entitled “Bill of Rights” to be another mode of learning for the differentiated
classroom. This site provides tons of lessons arranged by content and a variety of education
professional development topics.

                                              School House Rocks!
                                              This site is just as you remember as a kid when TV
                                              was good for you! Enjoy the song of the Preamble
                                              and teach it to your students.

Library of Congress: The Learning Page
Pathfinders for the Declaration of Independence

                Learner Activities
              The Constitution in the Flesh
   Explains origins, creation, & important sections
   of the Constitution.

    The Declaration of Independence, The
      Constitution, and the Bill of Rights

Constitution of the United States
       Flash cards & personalities.
      Bill of Rights
      View original document & explanation of the Declaration
      of Independence.


       Ben’s Guide to US Government for Kids
       Interactive web site teaching branches of
       government, how laws are made, vocabulary
       explanations, games & activities.


   Online Audio Lectures and Discussions

   Audio of Declaration of Indpendence

Dress Up & Everyday Life
Interactive site where student can dress men & women
with clothing from the time of the writing of the
Constitution. Also, 15 activites that show everyday life in
New England during that time.
America's Freedom Documents!
Different ways for students to show understanding of main concepts.


Writing a Classroom Constitution
Gives the students a template to write a classroom constitution.


Assessment: Theme 2: Taxes in U.S. History
     Lesson 1: Evolution of Taxation in the Constitution
Online quiz.



This program allows students to plan their writing through mapping and also
allows student to move back and forth through this map and an outline.


This site allows a quick process for teachers to create rubrics. We encourage
teachers to assess the state standards by first unwrapping standards so that
students and teacher know the performance expectations.
    Modifications: Planning for Academic Diversity
There are many ways to meet the needs of students who are unable to read or write at grade level.
Some may use technology and others will not. I have included some products and programs available
to you and those students who may need them.

For students Who Struggle With Reading
ReadPlease 2002 (Windows): A text to speech application that can be used to read web
pages. This program will speak any test copied to the clipboard.

AutoSummarize (Word): Summarizes passages from textbooks to a manageable length
for students who are not reading at grade level. You can control percentage of text

Start to Finish Book: Washington and the Fight for American Independence: A
high-interest, controlled vocabulary series that includes different levels of support for
different levels of readers (i.e. audiotapes and condensed books).

IntelliTools Classroom Suite:
Software that could be used to
create activities which could be
used as a learning tool and

                  For Students Who Struggle With Writing
Inspiration: This program allows students to plan their writing through mapping and also
allows student to move back and forth through this map and an outline.

Draft-Builder: Another organizer in which students plug in their own research. This
program supports students through the writing process.

NoodleBib: This programs helps student develop source cards and works cited pages.
Student simply plug in the information and the works cited entry is created for them.

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