WebQuest Title:  What Were They Thinking?  The Founders, the Enlightenment, the Classics, and Our Government      

Dear Colleague:  This is a lesson which presupposes a certain amount of information about American government, and should therefore be used as some sort of culminating activity as opposed to an introduction.  In this webquest students will be exposed to Classical governments and Enlightenment ideals.  They will then relate this information to their prior knowledge of American government and draw parallels between the two.  The goal is to have them understand some of the ideas which influenced the framers while they created our Constitution and Bill of Rights.

Author:  Ryan Drake                

Date:  April 22, 2006                

Teacher's Page

Unit Summary Teacher's Resources Day 1 Lesson Day 2 Lesson
Day 3 Lesson Day 4 Lesson Conclusion Student Webquest

 

Unit Summary:
    Goals/Objectives: 

NCSS Themes:

            -Theme 5: Individuals, Groups, and Institutions

            -Theme 6: Power, Authority, and Governance

            -Theme 10: Civic Ideals and Practices

 

Sunshine State Standards:

-SS.A.2.4.4: The student understands significant aspects of the economic, political, and social of ancient Greece and the cultural contributions of that civilization.

-SS.A.2.4.5: The student understands significant aspects of the economic, political, and social of ancient Rome and the cultural contributions of that civilization.

-SS.A.3.4.5: The student understands the significant scientific and social changes from the Age of Reason through the Age of Enlightenment.

-SS.C.1.4.1: The student understands the nature of political authority and the relationship between government and society in limited governments and totalitarian governments.

-SS.C.1.4.2: The student understands the ideas that led to the creation of limited government in the United States.

-SS.C.1.4.3: The student understands how the overall design and specific features of the Constitution prevent the abuse of power by aggregating power at the national, state, and local levels; dispersing power among different levels of government; and using a system of checks and balances (e.g., federalism).

 

Objectives:

            -The students will be able to identify at least five major offices or councils of both Roman and Greek Government.

            -The students will be able to describe the views held by Enlightenment thinkers

            -The students will be able to identify at least five factors of our American government which can trace their roots to either the Enlightenment or Classical governments.


    Days: 
2 block days (4 traditional days)
    Content:
 As a class we will look at Enlightenment ideas and philosophers who had an affect on the Framers, as well as items written by the framers which showed their knowledge of Enlightenment ideals .  We will also look at the similarities between Greek and Roman governments and our American Government.
    Methods: 
A combination of lecture with PowerPoint, compare and contrast organizers (Venn diagrams, etc.), and cooperative learning.

WebQuest Summary:
    Goals/Objectives:

NCSS Themes:

            -Theme 5: Individuals, Groups, and Institutions

            -Theme 6: Power, Authority, and Governance

            -Theme 10: Civic Ideals and Practices

 

Sunshine State Standards:

-SS.A.2.4.4: The student understands significant aspects of the economic, political, and social of ancient Greece and the cultural contributions of that civilization.

-SS.A.2.4.5: The student understands significant aspects of the economic, political, and social of ancient Rome and the cultural contributions of that civilization.

-SS.A.3.4.5: The student understands the significant scientific and social changes from the Age of Reason through the Age of Enlightenment.

-SS.C.1.4.1: The student understands the nature of political authority and the relationship between government and society in limited governments and totalitarian governments.

-SS.C.1.4.2: The student understands the ideas that led to the creation of limited government in the United States.

-SS.C.1.4.3: The student understands how the overall design and specific features of the Constitution prevent the abuse of power by aggregating power at the national, state, and local levels; dispersing power among different levels of government; and using a system of checks and balances (e.g., federalism).

 

Objectives:

            -The students will be able to identify at least five major offices or councils of both Roman and Greek Government.

            -The students will be able to describe the views held by Enlightenment thinkers

            -The students will be able to identify at least five factors of our American government which can trace their roots to either the Enlightenment or Classical governments.


    Days:  1.5 block days (2 traditional days)
    Content:  Students will be provided with links containing information about enlightenment thinkers.  They will then create a web using said information while drawing parallels between the enlightenment and classical theories of government.  As the final project for the webquest, students will have to prepare a presentation which outlines the Enlightenment thinker whose ideas they felt were most important, as well as the Enlightenment ideas which they feel were most important.
    Methods: Webquest, group work, and presentations

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Background Resources

Web-based Subject Matter Content

http://www.vroma.org/~bmcmanus/romangvt.html - Roman Cursus Honorum

 

This website gives a basic overview of all of the different offices of the Roman Government.  It could be used as a brush-up by a teacher without a lot of background knowledge of Roman government.  It also includes a pictorial representation of the corsus honorum which may be helpful during the pre-webquest part of the unit wherein the kids are getting a brief look at Roman Government.

http://www.wsu.edu:8080/~dee/AMERICA/ENLIGHT.HTM - American Enlightenment

The American Enlightenment gives a detailed background of the Enlightenment ideals used by the framers.  It is a little too in depth for use by the students, but could be used by a teacher as background information during the section of the unit wherein the teacher briefly talks about the Enlightenment

http://libertariannation.org/a/f41l1.html - The Athenian

 

This website was the source for the Athenian government handouts.  As it is a political site, the information was slightly biased towards Libertarianism.  Therefore I took special care in editing the information when creating the packets.

http://www.mrdowling.com/702-government.html - Legacy of Roman Government

 

This website is an easy-to-read site which talks about the similarities between the bicameral United States government and the Roman system of having the senate and tribunate.

http://www.socialstudieshelp.com/Lesson_6_Notes.htm - Enlightenment Thinkers

 

This site gives a brief description of a few of the philosophies of Enlightenment thinkers.  It would work well for the webquest portion of the unit due to the fact that it doesnt require extra navigation and the information is succinct and easy to understand.

http://oncampus.richmond.edu/academics/education/projects/webunits/greecerome/Greecegovt1.html - Greek Government

http://www.socialstudieshelp.com/Lesson_1_Notes.htm - The American Dream

 

This website contains more information about various enlightenment indeals and their affect on American Government.  Specifically, it has a small section devoted to the ideas of John Locke.

http://edusolution.com/myclassroom/classnotes/democracy/greece.htm - Roots of Democracy

 

This website deals with some of the affects that Greek democracy had on American government.  It also has some information about how that democracy actually worked.

http://abacus.bates.edu/~mimber/Rciv/5th.cen.htm - Roman civilization
http://www.roman-empire.net/republic/earlyrepublic.html - Roman government
Web Pedagogy Content
http://www.ed.gov/pubs/EdReformStudies/EdTech/effectsstudents.html - Effects of technology on classrooms and students

This website deals with the seven effects that the use of technology can have on a classrooms.  It specifically deals with how students react to technology and how using it changes the nature of teacher-student interaction

 http://projects.edtech.sandi.net/staffdev/buildingblocks/p-index.htm - Building blocks of a webquest

This website, which we used in class, contains a lot of information about how webquests are formed and how they operate.  This would serve as a good source of informatino for a teacher who may not have used a webquest in the past.

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DAY 1

 

Method

Content

Materials

Warmup Question

What is true democracy, and can it work?  Students will answer the question in their notebook for the first five minutes of class and we will quickly discuss it

Interactive Notebook

10 minutes

Jigsaw

Students are broken into main groups which are broken into sub groups.  The sub groups then meet to study a handout on their section of Athenian Democracy.  Back in the main group, each member teaches the main group what they learned in the sub group.  They then answer questions in their group.

Handout (packet) 1

50 minutes

Quickwrite

What would you change about the Athenian method?  Why?

15 minutes (timed)

Discussion

Discuss the contents of quickwrite

15 minutes

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DAY 2

 

Method

Content

Materials

Warmup Question

Were there any parts of the Greek system you agreed with?  Having already addressed the problems of the Athenian system, well address any strengths the students felt it had

Interactive Notebook

10 minutes

Lecture

Introduces the Roman system without giving any detail on the individual offices

PowerPoint

20 minutes

 

Cursus Honorum

Students are given handouts in pairs or geographic groups.  They then must complete a graphic organizer for their notebook which shows the steps of the Cursus Honorum and the duties of each individual office.

Handout 2, Cursus Honorum picture

30 minutes (to be completed at home)

 

Discussion/Lecture

Compare and Contrast Greek and Roman Governments.  As a class we will create a Venn diagram.  This will serve as a recap of both the Roman and Greek systems.

Venn Diagram

30 minutes

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DAY 3

 

Method

Content

Materials

Warmup Question

What did you like/dislike about the Roman system?  What would you change?  This will act as a recap of the previous day.

Interactive Notebook

10 minutes

Short discussion

As the discussion of the warmup moves to the What would you change? portion, remind the students that the Romans had the ability to change whatever they wanted about their government when they formed it, as they had just thrown off an oppressor and needed to start from scratch.  Then discuss what students would do today were they to find themselves in a similar situation.

5 minutes

Introduction of Webquest

Remind students that the United states once threw off an oppressor.  Introduce the webquest as an activity which will look at how the Framers looked at the governments around them and created one out of the ideals of the enlightenment.  Also, this time can be spent going through individual parts of the webquest.

10 minutes

Webquest

Webquest

Webquest

60 minutes

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DAY 4

 

Method

Content

Materials

Warmup Question

Get in groups to finish presentation

Interactive Notebook

Presentations

Students will present their findings

Poster paper, markers, rulers, etc.

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Conclusion:

    Upon completion of this webquest the students should have a greater understanding of the Classical and Ancient influences on our government. 

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