Unit Overview & Objectives: This unit makes use of the Radiolab & NPR Podcast “More Perfect” to teach students about the role of the Judicial Branch (mainly the Supreme Court) and also how to use, apply, and interpret sections of the Constitution. It can be easily adapted for both 8th grade and high school level courses. The purpose is to bring to life parts of government that don’t seem like they would necessarily have an impact on our everyday lives when you read about them in a textbook. In this unit students specifically address the role and function of the Supreme Court, Separation of Powers, the source of the Supreme Court’s power and how that has been perceived over time, amending the Constitution, gender discrimination and the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment, the Political Question Doctrine, the 4th Amendment and police brutality, the 1st Amendment and “political speech,” how the Supreme Court works when they are deciding a case, the Commerce Clause & the end of racial segregation.
The Main Activities In This Unit: 1. Listening to podcasts and answering questions in groups; 2. Creating Sway Presentations (part of Microsoft 365 / Power Point would work too) with the group and then teaching the class about their podcast.
Included in this Packet: 1. Lesson plans; 2. Academic Language vocabulary list; 3. The worksheets (7); 4. The reading assignments and corresponding questions (6); 5. Rubrics and grading instructions; 6. Answer keys.