Founders and the Constitution

Founders and the Constitution: In Their Own Words, introduces students to twenty-four individuals who had a direct impact on the founding of our constitutional government. Students will explore the lives and ideas of the Founders, analyze their writings, and appreciate each Founder’s role in shaping our government.

In Their Own Words

Click the Play button below to watch the video.

Play
CLOSE
Charles Carroll of Carrollton (1737-1832) Image

Charles Carroll of Carrollton (1737-1832)

In this lesson, students will study the life of Charles Carroll of Carrollton. Students will learn about his role as a leader during the revolution, his championing of religious tolerance, and much more.

View Lesson

Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790) Image

Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790)

In this lesson, students will study the life of Benjamin Franklin. Students will learn about Franklin’s contributions to his community and country, evaluate the Albany plan, analyze Franklin’s efforts oppose slavery, and much more.

View Lesson

Elbridge Gerry (1744-1814) Image

Elbridge Gerry (1744-1814)

In this lesson, students will study the life of Elbridge Gerry. Students will learn about Gerry’s role as a leader of the American opposition to British tyranny, his opposition to the Constitution, the tactic of gerrymandering, and much more.

View Lesson

Patrick Henry (1736-1799) Image

Patrick Henry (1736-1799)

In this lesson, students will study the life of Patrick Henry. They will learn about why he is often called “The Orator of Liberty”, and his opposition to the Constitution. They will also analyze his speaking style.

View Lesson

Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826) Image

Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826)

In this lesson, students will study the life of Thomas Jefferson. Students will learn about his efforts to protect individual rights and human liberty, his views on the Founding, and the contradictions between his words and his actions.

View Lesson

Richard Henry Lee (1732-1794) Image

Richard Henry Lee (1732-1794)

In this lesson, students will study the life of Richard Henry Lee. They will learn about his views on the slave trade and slavery, his role as a leader of the American opposition to British tyranny, and his opposition to the Constitution.

View Lesson

James Madison (1751-1836) Image

James Madison (1751-1836)

In this lesson, students will study the life of James Madison. They will learn about why he is called, “The Father of the Constitution”, his views on the Bill of Rights, his remedy for the problem of factions in a democratic republic, and much more.

View Lesson

George Mason (1725-1792) Image

George Mason (1725-1792)

In this lesson, students will study the life of George Mason. They will learn about Mason’s views on rights, his objections to the Constitution, and his devotion to personal liberty and states’ rights.

View Lesson

Robert Morris (1734-1806) Image

Robert Morris (1734-1806)

In this lesson, students will study the life of Robert Morris. They will learn about his role as a leader of the American opposition to British tyranny, in stabilizing the finances of the United States, and support of the Constitution.

View Lesson

Charles Pinckney (1757-1824) Image

Charles Pinckney (1757-1824)

In this lesson, students will study the life of Charles Pinckney. They will learn about his contributions to the Founding, his views on the Articles of Confederation, his role at the Constitutional Convention, and much more.

View Lesson

Roger Sherman (1721-1793) Image

Roger Sherman (1721-1793)

In this lesson, students will study the life of Roger Sherman. Students will learn about his contributions to public service, his views on the proper division of power between state and national government, and his view on the role of government.

View Lesson

John Witherspoon (1723-1794) Image

John Witherspoon (1723-1794)

In this lesson, students will study the life of John Witherspoon and his influence on religious freedom in America. They will learn about the significance of Article VI, Section 3 of the Constitution, the concept of a “religious test” for public office, and much more.

View Lesson

John Adams (1735-1826) Image

John Adams (1735-1826)

In this lesson, students will study the life of John Adams. Students will learn about his role in the American Revolution, in the shaping of the new nation, his role as president, and his reasons for and objections to the Alien and Sedition Acts.

View Lesson

Samuel Adams (1722-1803) Image

Samuel Adams (1722-1803)

In this lesson, students will study the life of Samuel Adams. They will learn about his role as a leader in the American opposition to British tyranny, his hopes for a new American government, and his methods of persuasion for the Revolutionary cause.

View Lesson

John Dickinson (1732-1808) Image

John Dickinson (1732-1808)

In this lesson, students will study the life of John Dickinson. They will learn about why he did not sign the Declaration of Independence, his opinions on government, the purpose of the colonists’ objection to the Townshend Acts, and much more.

View Lesson

Alexander Hamilton (1757-1804) Image

Alexander Hamilton (1757-1804)

In this lesson, students will study the life of Alexander Hamilton. Students will learn about his reasoning in supporting a single and powerful executive leader, his role at the Constitutional Convention, and the role he played in shaping the new United States government.

View Lesson

John Hancock (1737-1793) Image

John Hancock (1737-1793)

In this lesson, students will study the life of John Hancock. They will learn about the ways Hancock worked to support the Revolutionary cause, his partnership with Samuel Adams in resisting British tyranny, the effectiveness of his rhetoric, and much more.

View Lesson

John Jay (1745-1829) Image

John Jay (1745-1829)

In this lesson, students will study the life of John Jay. They will learn about the significance of Jay’s Treaty, Jay’s efforts to abolish slavery on a state and national level, his political roles during and after the Revolutionary period, and much more.

View Lesson

Gouverneur Morris (1752-1816) Image

Gouverneur Morris (1752-1816)

In this lesson, students will study the life of Gouverneur Morris. They will learn about Gouverneur Morris’s role in the Newburgh Conspiracy, his contributions and responsibilities at the Constitutional Convention, and his view on the purposes of government.

View Lesson

James Otis (1725-1783) Image

James Otis (1725-1783)

In this lesson, students will study the life of James Otis. They will learn about the concept of inalienable or natural rights, his opinion on slavery, his contributions to the Revolutionary period, and much more.

View Lesson

Thomas Paine (1737-1809) Image

Thomas Paine (1737-1809)

In this lesson, students will study the life of Thomas Paine. Students will learn about his arguments in Common Sense, The Rights of Man, and The Age of Reason as well as his contributions to the Revolutionary cause.

View Lesson

Benjamin Rush (1745-1813) Image

Benjamin Rush (1745-1813)

In this lesson, students will study the life of Benjamin Rush. They will learn about Rush’s contributions to social reform in his community and country, his goals for education, and the roles he played during and after the Revolutionary period.

View Lesson

George Washington (1732-1799) Image

George Washington (1732-1799)

In this lesson, students will study the life of George Washington. They will learn why he is known as “Father of His Country”, his reasons for not seeking a third term as president, the purposes of his Farewell Address, and much more.

View Lesson

James Wilson (1742-1798) Image

James Wilson (1742-1798)

In this lesson, students will study the life of James Wilson. They will learn about his contribution to the system of presidential elections, the concept of popular sovereignty, and his views on punishment.

View Lesson

Close

Give Feedback

Send us your comments or questions using the form below.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.
Close