Objective: Explain the extent to which the Supreme Court’s interpretation of the First Amendment reflects a commitment to individual liberty.
Starter: What percentage of Americans know the party of their own US House Representative?
1.How accurate was your prediction?
2.What least surprised you about this data?
3.What is the big story this data tells about Americans' political knowledge?
4.Why do you think that is?
5.What is one consequence of this?
6.Is this good news?
7.How different do you imagine this information was 100 years ago?
8.And how different do you think this information will be in 20 years?
9.Explain whether it really matters which party your representative is in.
10.What are two countries that you think would have higher knowledge of the political party affiliation of their representatives and what are two countries that you think would have lower knowledge of the party affiliation of their representatives?
11.What do you think the Founding Fathers would think about this?
12.Explain the connection between this data and reasons for the creation of the Electoral College.
13.We will henceforth refer to the approximately half of Americans who cannot name party of their representative as "low-information voters"! Can you name your representative's party?
14.Explain whether you want these "low information voters" to vote.
15.Should we have a basic test of knowledge, such as, "Please name the party of your current representative. Please name the capital of the United States. Please count to three." in order for people to qualify to vote?
16.Do you think these low information voters can name the party of the current POTUS?
17.Do you think the POTUS can?
18.Based on the chart, which demographic groups are the most knowledgeable?
19.Based on the chart, which demographic groups are the least knowledgeable?
20.How do you think the lack of basic knowledge on the part of voters impacted the 2016 presidential election?
21.When asked, "When you voted for President, did you also have the opportunity to elect a U.S. Representative for your district?" what portion of American voters said, "no" or "I don't know"? And which answer is scarier?
22.Explain how low information voting impacts the following:
Recap: Explain the extent to which the Supreme Court's interpretation of the First Amendment reflects a commitment to individual liberty.
Word of the Day
Article Response: You Can't Say That!
- Describe the author's claim(s), perspective, evidence, and reasoning.
- Explain how the author's argument relates to political principles, institutions, processes, policies, and/or behaviors.
- Explain how the implications of the author's argument may affect political principles, institutions, processes, policies, and/or behaviors.
Project: SCOTUS Case in a Box
You will research a landmark Supreme Court case and create a “Landmark Case Box” by bringing in tangible artifacts to represent that case. For example, if your assigned case was Texas v. Johnson (flag burning is protected free speech), you might choose to include a flag, a picture of Reagan, an EMPTY match book (some of these are sensitive issues, if you have to make a judgment call about the appropriateness of an object, you need to run it by Jacobson ahead of time), a typed or handwritten copy of the First Amendment, etc. You will present your case and box to the class. You will work in pairs on this project. Here are the requirements for the presentation:
- You must have at least eight objects in your box. These objects must relate to the case you’re assigned. I recommend using an empty cereal box.
- You must cover and then decorate the outside of your box with illustrations, words/phrases/constitutional clauses, photos, etc., that relate to your case. You must complete a Landmark Supreme Court Case chart with information about your case.
- Glue the chart to one side of the box and use it as a prompt when you present your case to the class. Your classmates will fill in their blank graphic organizers (one for each of the 9 cases) based on the information you present in class.
- You must present the contents of your box to the class. Show each item in the box and explain why it was significant to your case. Be prepared to answer questions from your audience about the case.
- List of Landmark Supreme Court cases:
- Brown v. Board of Education (equal protection under the law)
- Engel v. Vitale (establishment of religion)
- Gideon v. Wainwright (right to counsel)
- McDonald v. Chicago (right to bear arms)
- New York Times v. United States (prior restraint)
- Roe v. Wade (abortion)
- Schenck v. United States (clear and present danger)
- Tinker v. Des Moines (symbolic speech)
- Wisconsin v. Yoder (free exercise of religion)
Closer: Explain the extent to which the Supreme Court’s interpretation of the First Amendment reflects a commitment to individual liberty.
Next Topic: Freedom of the Press
Textbook: Read Section 4.4 (pp. 105-107)
Textbook: Read Section 4.4 (pp. 105-107)