The American Presidency
Sponsored by Grolier Online, an educational portal drawing from Grolier’s various encyclopedias, this site provides information about American Presidents, Vice Presidents, Presidential candidates, and Presidential elections.
The American Presidents
Sponsored by the Miller Center of the University of Virginia, this site examines the history and function of the American Presidency, drawing in part on the Miller Center’s oral histories with members of various Presidential administrations.
Based on C-SPAN’s television series, this site provides extensive material on each President, featuring video interviews with historians, visits to Presidential sites, and extensive background information.
The Articles of Confederation
Sponsored by the Avalon Project at Yale Law School, this site offers the text of the Articles of Confederation and other documents relating to it and the road to the U.S. Constitution.
Bill of Rights Institute
The Bill of Rights Institute’s mission is to educate high school students and teachers about the Constitution and Bill of Rights through the words and ideas of the framers. It examines the liberties and freedoms guaranteed in these founding documents and how they have affected and shaped a free society. The site includes classroom lessons and other materials for teachers, landmark Supreme Court cases, and historical documents.
Center for Civil Education
The Center for Civil Education specializes in civic and law-related education and international educational exchange programs for developing democracies. Its programs focus on the U.S. Constitution and Bill of Rights; American political institutions at the federal, state, and local levels; and the rights and responsibilities of citizens. This site offers lessons for students from kindergarten up to 12th grade regarding Constitution Day and Citizenship Day, and other resources for teachers and school coordinators. It also includes an online newsletter and various speeches, articles, and papers relating to the Constitution and to the annual “We the People” competition for students, which is sponsored by the center.
Sponsored by the Everett McKinley Dirksen Center, in Pekin, Illinois, CongressLink offers information about the U.S. Congress—its operations, its members, its leaders, and its public policies, with a mix of current and historical information.
Constitutional Rights Center
The Los Angeles–based Constitution Rights Center provides technical assistance and training to teachers; coordinates civic participation projects in schools and communities; organizes student conferences, competitions, and mock trials; and develops publications on law and government. Through its civic participation programs it educates on the rights and responsibilities of active citizenship. The site features online lessons on the Constitution and constitutional law and information about available educational programs.
The Constitution Project
An organization that seeks consensus on controversial legal and constitutional issues through a unique combination of scholarship and activism, the Constitution Project has produced a number of books and other material as resources for reporters, lawmakers, and students. The site contains information about the project’s many initiatives, announcements of public programs, and various free publications.
A plethora of information about famous trials in the United States and other nations, offering essays, transcripts, and evidence.
The Federal Judiciacy
An official website maintained by the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts that offers information from and about the judicial branch, including the Supreme Court, appeals courts, district courts, and bankruptcy courts.
This site offers the entire text of The Federalist essays by James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, and John Jay, written to explain and promote the ratification of the Constitution
First Amendment Center
The First Amendment Center, based at Vanderbilt University and in Arlington, Virginia, offers research tools on key First Amendment issues and topics, a First Amendment Library, and guest analyses by legal specialists. The site offers research material on freedom of speech, press, religion, assembly, and petition, and provides a digest of ongoing cases involving these freedoms.
First Federal Congress Project
A massive publication project on the First Congress, its members, and its output, the First Federal Congress Project also offers online exhibits related to the First Congress, which passed the Bill of Rights and otherwise implemented the Constitution.
An authoritative account of the writings and arguments of the delegates to the convention.
The Freedom Forum
A nonpartisan foundation dedicated to free press, free speech, and free spirit for all people, the Freedom Forum operates the Newseum in Washington, D.C. (http://www.newseum.org/). Its website includes the Freedom Library, an online library that serves as a clearinghouse for information concerning the five freedoms guaranteed by the First Amendment: speech, press, assembly, petition, and religion. It offers an array of judicial, legislative, historical, analytical, journalistic, editorial, and other materials.
This massive site serves as a U.S. history survey on the Internet. Among its many offerings is an abundance of information relating to the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the many political events and judicial decisions that have shaped the United States.
An innovative, issue-based approach for engaging in informed political discourse, sponsored by the Annenberg Foundation. This website uses audio from the Justice Talking radio show and articles from the New York Times to teach students about reasoned debate and the often conflicting values inherent in our democracy. It includes articles, editorials, and oral debate from journalists and advocates. The material is supported by summaries and additional links, with curricular material for high school teachers and detailed information about how the courts, the Congress, the Presidency, the press, and the schools affect the issue. The site includes Justice Learning’s Guide to the Constitution.
Landmark Supreme Court Cases
Sponsored by Street Law and the Supreme Court Historical Society, this site provides a full range of resources and activities to support the teaching of landmark Supreme Court cases, helping students explore the key issues of each case. Its “resources” section features background summaries and excerpts of opinions. The “activities” section contains a range of exercises.
Library of Congress, American Memory
This massive site includes a compilation of documents related to the Constitutional Convention and the evolution of Congress. Its Thomas site also provides extensive information on the current activities of Congress (http://thomas.loc.gov/).
National Archives and Records Administration
The records of the entire federal government are housed in the National Archives. This site provides find aids and other information about those records, and a National Archives Digital Classroom (http://www.archives.gov/digital_classroom/) geared toward teaching with documents, including the Constitution.
The National Constitution Center
An impressive museum dedicated to the Constitution, the National Constitution Center is located in Philadelphia, within sight of Independence Hall, where the Constitution was drafted. The center aims to increase public understanding of, and appreciation for, the Constitution, its history, and its contemporary relevance. This website provides information about the museum and its changing exhibits, with other materials related to the Constitution.
A joint project of the National Archives, the History Channel, National History Day, and the USA Freedom Corps, this site helps people think, talk, and teach about the rights and responsibilities of citizens. It offers 100 milestone documents of American history that reflect the nation’s diversity and unity, and the commitment to strive to “form a more perfect union.”
United States House of Representatives
The official website of the House of Representatives offers information about current members, committees, floor proceedings, and legislation. It also contains historical information about the House (http://clerk.house.gov/histHigh/index.html).
United States Senate
The official website of the Senate, gives similar information about the current senators, and committees, as well as extensive reference information on the history of the institution and the U.S. Capitol.
United States Supreme Court
The official website of the Supreme Court provides information about the current justices and the Court’s most recent cases.
The official website of the White House provides information about the recent activities of the president and first lady, as well as life in the White House.