Rights of a Citizen

General Description

Lesson Goals:
Students will be able to identify the political rights of citizens of the United States.

Essential Question:
What is the difference between freedom and liberty?

Lesson Plan:
  • Have students brainstorm a list of rights that are guaranteed to citizens of the United States.
  • Compare these rights to the actual political rights that are guaranteed to citizens in the Bill of Rights.
  • Engage in discussion with the students as to whether any of the rights they brainstormed should be added to the Bill of Rights.
  • Break students into small groups (2-3 per group).
  • Present each group with examples of political cartoons that are focused on a political rights issue.  Working in their group students should identify the right that is the focus of the cartoon as while as the political context for the cartoon.
  • Have students share out their findings.  As a class map out the different kinds of political controversy around that have emerged around rights.

Students choose three political rights and create a political cartoon for each right.  Their cartoon should be inspired by a current issue: national, community, or school.  It may be helpful to identify some of the current political issues that could be relevant to the different rights.  Students should also write  a one paragraph explanation for each cartoon they complete.  In the paragraph they should address:the right that is the focus of the cartoon, the political issue that is the focus of the cartoon, and an explanation of how student’s cartoon is commentating on the political right. 

Supporting Materials:
  • Constitution
  • Bill of Rights
  • Assorted Political Cartoons 

Materials and Documents

Thank you so much for your organization. I truly am most appreciative of the financial gift. This is such a rarity for teachers. In fact, finding a no-cost professional development can be a difficulty. You showed respect by providing a no-cost training, a delicious lunch, and a stipend. Thank you so very much. Looking forward to future newsletters and workshops! Thank you for helping teachers grow in their knowledge of a most important subject and cause: civics education.
- Sabrina Maltby, Manchester Public Schools
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