Constitution Day Resources

 From Joey Wiseman, WVDE:

Constitution Day 2012

On Constitution and Citizenship Day, September 17, the U.S. celebrates the signing of the U.S. Constitution in 1787. In 2004, a law was passed establishing the holiday that honors both the signing of the Constitution and all individuals who have become citizens, whether born in the U.S. or by naturalization.

Here are some Annenberg Learner resources about the Constitution:

In the series The Constitution: That Delicate Balance, distinguished personalities in government, media, and law discuss constitutional issues such as criminal justice, personal freedoms, and presidential elections.

In Democracy in America, program 2, “The Constitution: Fixed or Flexible?” topics presented include different interpretations of the Constitution and the relationship between the President and Congress when creating laws.

More resources about the United States Constitution and citizenship:

Ethics in America
Ethics in America II

Making Civics Real: A Workshop for Teachers

A Biography of America, program 5, “A New System of Government

The Western Tradition: Program 5, “The Rise of Greek Civilization,”
program 6, “Greek Thought,” program 37, “The American Revolution,” and
program 38, “The American Republic.”

American Passages archives. Search “Constitution” and other key terms.

Other Annenberg Resources for Constitution Day

The Annenberg Foundation Trust at Sunnylands was established by the Annenberg Foundation to advance public understanding and appreciation for democracy and to address serious issues facing the country and the world. Among its many activities, the Sunnylands Trust creates and distributes print, online, and video materials on the Constitution for use on Constitution Day in September and beyond. To use these resources, visit the Sunnylands’ Constitution Project’s site for teachers, Sunnylands Classroom.

More free video programs and other materials for your Constitution Day events can be found on the Annenberg Classroom Web site


Constitution Day

Robert C. Byrd inserted a provision into a massive spending bill that Congress passed in 2004 requiring every school and college that receives federal money to teach about the Constitution on Sept. 17, the day it was adopted in 1787. This year Constitution Day is being observed on Monday,  September 17, 2012.  Throughout his life, the West Virginia Democrat kept a copy of the Constitution in his pocket.   I hope that each and every one of us will take a few minutes to remember Senator Byrd on Constitution Day.

The federal government does not dictate when or how to implement the lesson. It was Senator Byrd’s intention that educators use creativity and find interesting ways to teach the lessons of the Constitution.  You may determine what kind of program you want to organize, (for example assembly, school play or reenactment, closed-circuit TV broadcast throughout the building followed by classroom discussion.) Below you will find a list of current resources available online to assist you with lesson plans, primary source documents, biographies, role-play scenarios and other activities too numerous to mention.

The following resources are provided by the Annenberg Media Center. Many of the videos are now free online to use in your classroom you do not need to purchase videos to use the free online lesson plansThe sites are interactive and

  • This year Constitution Day is Friday, September 16. As you know, educational institutions receiving funding through the Department of Education are required to participate by holding educational programs pertaining to the U.S. Constitution (find the original announcement in the Federal Register <> volume 70, page 29727).
  •  In the roundtable discussions of “Ethics in America”

<>, well-known figures in government, law, media, military, business, health care, and religion puzzle through constitutional issues and their application to         realistic hypothetical situations.