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Social Studies Curriculum Social Studies - United States History I
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(Ca. 1781-1789)

American independence brought with it the need for self-government. Dissatisfaction with inadequate early political structures led to the creation of the Constitution. The Constitutional Convention brought together the greatest political minds of the fledgling nation. Through debate and compromise, the Founding Fathers brought together in a unique way the principles and philosophies that had been theorized and tested for centuries. The Bill of Rights was then added, enumerating the rights of American citizens. In the end, the Constitution and Bill of Rights created the structure of a government that has functioned, survived crises, and evolved for over two centuries, affecting the life of every citizen today.

Possible Guiding Questions to Consider:

  • What were the problems that led to the calling of a Constitutional Convention?
  • What is the evidence that Enlightenment philosophies, the Articles of Confederation, Shays' rebellion, the Constitutional Convention, the Great Compromise, and the ratification debate all influenced the creation of the Constitution?
  • What vision of civic virtue is evident in the Constitution?
  • How does a compound constitutional republic balance state and federal powers?
  • Why is James Madison sometimes referred to as "the Father of the Constitution"?
  • What is the role of compromise in political processes?
  • How has the U.S. Constitution influenced political structures around the world?
  • In what ways can the U.S. Constitution be considered an exceptional document?

UEN logo - in partnership with Utah State Board of Education (USBE) and Utah System of Higher Education (USHE).  Send questions or comments to USBE Specialist - Robert  Austin and see the Social Studies website. For general questions about Utah's Core Standards contact the Director - Jennifer  Throndsen.

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