When the Founders wrote the Constitution, they didn’t pull their ideas out of thin air. They created a government based on a set of fundamental principles carefully designed to guarantee liberty. This lesson lets students look at the Constitution from the perspective of its foundational principles. Students make direct connections between these principles, the Founders’ intentions, and the Constitution itself, and they learn why the constitutional principles are critical to a free society.

Learning Objectives

Students will be able to:

  • Analyze the basic principles of the U.S. Constitution
  • Identify relationships among popular sovereignty, consent of the governed, limited government, rule of law, federalism, separation of powers, and checks and balances
  • Describe how these principles are incorporated into the Constitution
  • Explain the concerns that led the Founders to value these principles

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