USF's WebQuest 

Know Your Rights Webquest

Michelle Williams

 

Introduction:

We've all heard of the Bill of Rights, right?? You know... that short little document in the Constitution that tells us what we can and cannot do... But did you know that the Constitutional Framers initially opposed having a Bill of Rights? Did you that many states refused to even ratify the Constitution without one? Did you know that millions of men and women have died for these rights? Did you know that those first ten amendments, especially the 1st Amendment, still affect many aspects of your EVERYDAY LIVES????

Turns out this 'Bill of Rights'  thing is really important, huh? The rights guaranteed in this document are what sets apart the United States from so many other nations around the world. The Bill of Rights are the very foundation of freedom that America prides itself on.

Task:

Part One:

As journalists for the "National Historical Society", your group has been asked to research James Madison's Federalist Papers #10 and #51, two of the most famous newspaper articles in American history. You will write a magazine article for "History Today" covering the most important ideas and themes of each of the Papers. After covering the most important themes in both #10 and #51, you will write a concluding paragraph explaining how these themes are still relevant to American politics today.

Part Two:

Your group's article is such a success that the "National Historical Society" has asked you to take on another project!! In addition to Federalist Papers #10 and #51, James Madison is also famous for writing another, even more important document: the Bill of Rights, the first ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution. Drafted in 1791, the language of the original Bill of Rights is difficult for many Americans to comprehend.

As your task, you will reconstruct the Bill of Rights using modern-day language. You will then create a PowerPoint lecture of your new Bill of Rights to be presented at the National Historical Society's yearly banquet.

Process:

You will work in pre-assigned groups of FIVE to complete both tasks of this webquest. Each student in the group must select one of FIVE ROLES. You will navigate the list of provided internet resources to complete these tasks. You will have two full class days in the computer lab to complete this webquest

-For the first task, students will work collaboratively to write magazine article (at least 3 pages long) titled "Federalist Papers #10 and 51: How these Documents Explore Freedom" covering the themes of "factions", "checks and balances" and "human nature." The article must be size 12 times new roman font and be double spaced. The article must have an introduction with a brief background of James Madison. The article must have a conclusion that sums up the major points of the article and ties the themes in with current events. Some example current themes might be: school prayer, special interest groups, majority control, the war on terror, etc.

-For the second task, each student will select TWO of the original Bill of Rights to reconstruct using modern-day language. Each student will be responsible for creating their own PowerPoint slides for their selected amendments. Each student will be responsible for presenting their two slides at the banquet. Each slide must be at least 25 words long, and must include at least one photo and at least one animation component.

The roles are as follows:

Resources:

Task One Internet Resources:

Task Two Internet Resources:

Evaluation:

Group Evaluation

 

Beginning

1

Developing

2

Accomplished

3

Exemplary

4

Score

Understanding of Main Themes in Article

Themes are identified but not adequately developed, lacks insight and creativity Themes are identified and only partially developed. Very little creativity or insight Themes are identified and thoroughly developed. Insightful and creative descriptions Themes are identified and thoroughly developed. Wonderfully descriptive and shows high levels of creativity

 
Components of Article Is not 3 pages in length.  Lacks an introduction. Lacks a conclusion. Has no transitions. Questions are not answered may be 3 pages  long, but certain aspects may be missing or out of order. Most questions are answered, some missing at least 3pages in length Introduction and Conclusion are present. Transitions are satisfactory. All questions are answered. at least 3 pages in length Introduction and Conclusion are present. Transitions are excellent. All questions are answered.

 

Overall Appearance of Article

Overall appearance is inadequate. Paragraphs are not indented. Sections missing. Spelling and punctuation errors common. Overall appearance is average. Some punctuation and spelling errors present. Overall appearance is above average. All paragraphs are indented. Good editing. Few spelling and grammar errors. Overall appearance is excellent. All paragraphs indented. No spelling or grammar errors.

 

Quality of Recreated Amendments in PowerPoint

Poor Quality. Little creativity displayed. Not 25 words in length Mediocre quality. Some creativity displayed. at least 25 words in length. Good Quality. High levels of creativity. At least 25 words in length. Excellent Quality. At least 25 words in length. Exceptional levels of creativity.

 

Overall Quality of PowerPoint presentation

overall appearance poor. lacks animation. animation doesn't work. no visuals. pages missing or out of order. many errors. overall appearance mediocre. pleasing. some animation, but not all works. no pages missing. may be out of order. some errors. overall appearance good. animation is in working order. no pages missing. pages in order. good visuals. few errors. overall appearance excellent. animation is in working order. no pages missing. pages in order. excellent visuals. no errors.

 

 

Individual Evaluation

 

Beginning

1

Developing

2

Accomplished

3

Exemplary

4

Score
Role #1: Introducer /Concluder Introductions and conclusions are missing or incomplete from one or both parts. . No credits page. spelling and grammar errors Introductions and conclusions for both parts are present, but may be incomplete. some errors. credits page present by may be incomplete Introductions and conclusions for both parts are complete and creative. very few errors. credits pages complete and correct. Introductions and conclusions are complete and creative. No errors. Credits pages complete and correct.
Role #2: Researcher one Theme not properly identified. Questions not answered. spelling and grammar errors common. Theme  identified but may be incorrect or incomplete Most questions answered, but some may be missing. some errors. Theme identified correctly. All questions answered adequately. Few errors. Theme identified correctly. All questions answered in depth. No errors.
Role #3: Researcher Two Theme not properly identified. Questions not answered. spelling and grammar errors common. Theme  identified but may be incorrect or incomplete Most questions answered, but some may be missing. some errors. Theme identified correctly. All questions answered adequately. Few errors. Theme identified correctly. All questions answered in depth. No errors.
Role #4: Researcher Three Theme not properly identified. Questions not answered. spelling and grammar errors common. Theme  identified but may be incorrect or incomplete Most questions answered, but some may be missing. some errors. Theme identified correctly. All questions answered adequately. Few errors. Theme identified correctly. All questions answered in depth. No errors.
Role #5: Assembler /Editor Neither part assembled correctly. Pages and sections missing. technology does not work. many errors in grammar and spelling Assembled correctly, but may be out of order or have sections missing. technology partially works. some errors. Assembled correctly with no pages/ sections missing. Most of the technology works. Minimum errors. Assembled correctly with no pages/ sections missing. All technology works. No errors.

 

Conclusion:

In this webquest you learned about James Madison and three of his most famous and timeless documents: Federalist Papers #10 and #51 and the Bill of Rights. Your group worked together to complete two challenging tasks: writing a magazine article and drafting a modern-day version of the Bill or Rights.

What sorts of things did you learn today? Would you argue that the Bill of Rights and Federalist Papers #10 and #51 are still relevant in our current political world? Why or why not?