Why Do We Have A House And Senate, Anyway?

Overview

Students learn why there are two houses of Congress and discover how a bicameral legislature ensures that all states have a voice in bills. Together, the class creates a school cell phone policy and experiments with different voting groups that demonstrate why the bicameral compromise was necessary. Students also examine how things might be different today if there were just a House or a Senate. (Recently Updated!)

Learning Objectives

Students will be able to ...

  • Model the lawmaking process by participating in a role-play activity to design a school cell phone policy.
  • Model the effect of unicameral and bicameral voting systems by participating in a series of votes about the cell phone policy.
  • Determine the effect of a single-house system by analyzing data about state populations and the number of representatives in each house.