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More than 90 minutes
  • Civil Rights
  • Constitution
  • Current Events
  • Women's Rights
  • 7-12

(Note: For more support, see expanded procedure in downloadable lesson plan.)

  1. In advance, select one student report from The First Amendment in Action Today (lesson plan 2) that features a project your students could continue or build on.
  2. Tell the class they will analyze the actions of advocacy groups they studied in the previous lesson plan.
  3. Assign one of the student reports from lesson plan 2 to each small group and have students complete Part I of the Making the Most of the First Amendment worksheet. Note: Students may have to look up additional articles about their advocacy group to complete their analyses of the group’s actions.
  4. When the worksheet is complete, ask if the group achieved or fell short of its goal(s). Depending on their answer, ask them to complete Option A or Option B of Part II.
  5. In pairs, students share their action plans, give feedback and revise their work.
  6. As a class, vote on three actions to pursue and create an implementation plan for doing so.
  7. Execute and document the action plan.

  • Making the Most of the Five Freedoms worksheet (download), one per small group
  • Internet access

Have your students share their projects at a school assembly or invite parents to a class presentation. They should tell the audience:

  • What was your issue?
  • What did your class do to address the issue? Why did you choose that action?
  • How was your action different from what the original group/individual you studied had done?
  • What was the result of your class’ actions? What worked as planned? What didn’t?
  • Were you satisfied with the results?
  • What would you do differently for future projects?
  • What elements of your plan involved the First Amendment? Could your project have succeeded without the five freedoms? Why or why not?

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