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Preamble, Articles of Confederation, and Cloze Reading Bundle

Grade Levels
7th - 10th, Homeschool
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14 pages
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Includes Google Apps™
This bundle contains one or more resources with Google apps (e.g. docs, slides, etc.).

Products in this Bundle (3)

    Also included in

    1. Middle School Social Studies Bundle. This bundle is providing you with 15 products that I’ve used in my classroom and are tried-and-true activities. When I first started teaching middle school I remember feeling so stressed because I didn’t have any resources to fall back on. This bundle provides
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    If you are looking for your students to make a connection to Constitution Day on September 17th, or teach U.S. History and need a way to help students understand the buildup to the Constitution, then any one of the three products in this bundle might be able to help.

    I teach 8th grade U.S. History and use each of these products in my course. I will usually have students complete The Preamble activity on Constitution Day even though we are usually just starting the topic of Colonial America at that time of the year. We then refer back the Preamble that when we get to the drafting of the Constitution later in the fall after we've learned about the Articles of Confederation. I use the assessment at the end of our American Revolution unit.

    Read through the descriptions and see if these products will work for you too!

    The Articles of Confederation - Federalist vs. Anti-Federalist Survey Included

    The Preamble - Making Sense of the Phrases Within

    Cloze Reading Strategy: Articles of Confederation to the U.S. Constitution


    The Articles of Confederation - Federalist vs. Anti-Federalist Survey Included

    Trying to find a way to explain the Articles of Confederation to your students without them drifting off into daydream land? This mini-lesson helps to make it real by connecting to their lives. Provided is a summarized story about the Articles of Confederation that I use with my 8th grade U.S. History students, which explains why the Articles of Confederation came about, as well as the powers delegated to the state and national governments.

    Table of Contents

    Page 1: Cover Page

    Pages 2-4: Background/Federal Government/State Government

    Pages 5-6: Parent-Teenager Comparison

    Pages 7-8: Federalist vs. Antifederalist Reading & Survey

    As a way for students to grasp the concepts, I have included an activity where students are given 15 issues that they have to decide if each one should be their parent(s) responsibility, their responsibility, or both of their responsibilities. Kind of like the national government was the "parent government" and they are like the state government. At the end students look at how many issues they said should just be left up to them, how many should be their parent's responsibility, and how many should be shared responsibilities. A wonderful class discussion takes place afterward where students justify their reasons for their selections. I then have them compare those issues to issues that were faced when the Continental Congress was trying to set up a government. For example, one of the issues is who should be able to decide who your friends are. Students always say that should be up to them, but when we compare it to the Articles of Confederation, only the national government was allowed to make peace or sign treaties, thus deciding who we would associate with. They were the parent government. Why wasn't this left up to the states? Isn't it the same? Then BAM! The discussion erupts again.

    Also included is a summary of the Federalist vs. Antifederalist, which were the groups that Americans associated themselves with when the Constitution was being constructed. A survey with 7 topics about government is included where students either answer with a "YES" or a "NO." The reason there are 7 is because they will not have a tie and it will place them as either being more of a Federalist or more of an Antifederalist.

    Both of these combined can be a one day class activity/discussion to get students thinking about how they think power should be distributed in regard to state vs. national government.

    The Preamble - Making Sense of the Phrases Within

    This Preamble assignment will have students take the "old language" found in the Preamble and use a dictionary, thesaurus, or online source to figure out what message was trying to be explained when it was written. Students will then create a more contemporary Preamble that would be understood by the average person.

    What's nice about this assignment is that it allows students to talk to each other while they are trying to figure out the meaning and decide on which words we use today mean the same as the words used back in 1787. Finding the meaning to the original words of the preamble builds upon their vocabulary and you will most likely hear them say afterward that they heard one of the words on a t.v. show, a movie, or saw one of them in a book they have read. It is one of those ways to continuously make connections from the past to the world they live in today.

    Cloze Reading Strategy: Articles of Confederation to the U.S. Constitution

    This is a story quiz I created that uses the "Cloze" reading strategy where students fill in the 43 blanks within the story using a word bank provided. There are more words and dates in the word bank than students will use. The quiz is rather lengthy and takes about 30 minutes for a student to complete (some more some less of course). This would be a great quiz to give if you knew you were going to have a substitute teacher that day.

    I teach 8th grade U.S. History using the Creating America: Beginnings through World War I text book and this goes along with Chapters 7 & 8. My classes are comprised of general education, special education, and gifted and talented all together. This quiz lets me see how well students are connecting to the story so far.

    This quiz needs to be printed on 11" x 17" paper and is one page. The answer key and the word bank are also on 11"x17" paper with the word bank having four word banks per page that get cut out to save on paper. I grade this as a class allowing students to grade their own making sure there is nothing on their desks except the red marker I provide for them. That way they can see for themselves which ones they got right or wrong and hear the story read to see how it is put together.

    Here are the words/dates in the word bank:

    “Give me liberty or give me death!”

    “I have not yet begun to fight!”

    “United we stand, divided we fall.”














    3/5 Compromise




    Appalachian Mountains

    Articles of Confederation

    Benjamin Franklin


    Civil War



    Continental Congress

    Daniel Boone


    Declaration of Independence





    Founding Fathers

    George Washington


    John Hancock




    Land claims

    Larger states







    National government

    New Jersey




    Proclamation Road



    Revolutionary War

    Rhode Island

    Rocky Mountains

    Salem’s Rebellion

    Shay’s Rebellion


    Smaller states


    State governments



    The Great Compromise





    Wilderness Road

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    14 pages
    Answer Key
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