Executive Orders & the President Lesson Plan

Grade Levels
8th - 11th
Resource Type
Formats Included
  • PDF
  • Google Apps™
13 pages
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Includes Google Apps™
The Teacher-Author indicated this resource includes assets from Google Workspace (e.g. docs, slides, etc.).


This engaging lesson plan on Executive Orders and the Powers of the President is great to use for a unit on the Executive Branch in Civics or American Government!

The download includes a lesson plan with step-by-step instructions on how to use each activity plus video links, and Google Doc versions of each resource!

First is a secondary source introductory reading on Executive Orders, what they are, how they work, and the history of them through the American Presidency. A set of analysis questions for this is included for students to answer.

Next, students analyze 5 primary source examples of well-known Executive Orders from American History from Roosevelt through Donald Trump (Executive Orders: 9066, 9981, 11111, 13228, and 13769). This can be done as stations, in groups, individually, or digitally through the included Google Doc version. An answer key is included for your convenience.

Finally, students complete a reflection activity on Executive Orders and whether or not they give the president too much law-making power.

The entire lesson plan can also be downloaded with many others as part of my Executive Branch Unit Bundle

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Total Pages
13 pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
90 minutes
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources, attending to such features as the date and origin of the information.
Determine the central ideas or information of a primary or secondary source; provide an accurate summary of how key events or ideas develop over the course of the text.
Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including vocabulary describing political, social, or economic aspects of history/social studies.
Compare the point of view of two or more authors for how they treat the same or similar topics, including which details they include and emphasize in their respective accounts.
Compare and contrast treatments of the same topic in several primary and secondary sources.


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