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Introduction House of Representatives The Senate Making Laws The Veto


Books & Reading

Books & Reading

14 Units to Learn How a Bill Becomes a Law

House of Representatives The Senate Making Laws The Veto

Making Laws

Bills on the Move

A three-level matching quiz to show the path a bill takes on its way to becoming a law. Select the correct description from the right and drag it to the left to match the footsteps to show the path a bill takes on its way to becoming a law. When finished, check your score to see if you earn 100% and continue to the next level.

Civil Rights Movement: Game 1
How would your students like to become a great investigator — of history?!  Professor Carlotta Facts will challenge them to solve the History Mystery! If they figure out the mystery in fewer clues, they earn a higher title as an investigator.

Civil Rights Self-Quiz
An interactive 3-tiered self-quiz about the civil rights era from 1954-1968. Includes a vocabulary quiz and 2 multiple-choice quizzes. You must pass each quiz to advance to the next level of questioning.

Famous Speeches
WyzAnt offers an audio history section where students can listen to famous speeches made by influential leaders of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. They offer original audio tapes of how Lyndon B. Johnson linked economic rights with civil rights and how he expressed his support for equal outcomes policies directed at Black Americans. You can also hear Dr. Martin Luther King’s famous “I Have a Dream” speech.

Teachers can use these resources to bring history and politics alive in the classroom. Listening to these historically famous speeches out loud can be inspirational for both students and educators. In addition to the original audio of the speeches, you will also find transcriptions beneath the audio player so you can follow along as you hear some the world’s greatest speakers address political issues of the 1900s and 2000s.

How a Bill Becomes a Law
Information and tasks about how both parts of the legislative branch are involved in the lawmaking process

I Have a Dream
Fill in all the gaps of several excerpts of the speech delivered by Dr. Martin Luther King on the steps at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C. on August 28, 1963.

Want to make some laws? You can in LawCraft, where you play a member of Congress from the state of your choice. You'll pick an issue that's important to you and your constituents and take it all the way through the law-making process. If you're successful, you'll have a bill you can print and show off. See if you can make the compromises necessary to get your bill passed and still make a law you're proud of!

The districts represented in this game were based on the most up to date information available at the time of development. Redistricting may have changed in some states.

Legislative Explorer
With so much data out there, how are we, as citizens, to manage this information to make good choices? The University of Washington’s Center for American Politics and Public Policy takes the massive amount of information about U.S. legislative activity from 1973 to the present and helps us visualize the progress of bills through the legislative branch. Color-coded “particles” represent each bill on an interactive field for each two-year legislative session. Set the field in motion and watch bills move through committees and onto the floor of the House or the Senate. Notice how many “particles” (each representing a bill) remain clustered in committees throughout the legislative session and how many actually make it to the President’s desk and become law. The animation is much more powerful (and informative) when you select an issue, a state, a legislator, a committee, or a party from the drop down menus. The “big picture” visuals are also informative.

Legislative Explorer will help civics and government teachers present the overall picture of how a bill makes its way (or doesn’t) through the legislative branch. On an interactive whiteboard (or projector), the visual impact of how many bills are proposed in a session is stunning. Once past that, however, students can research the activities of their local legislators by name or state. What issues matter enough to them to result in bill sponsorship? Teachers as an alternative, you can divide students into groups and have each group research a specific committee. What bills come to that committee? How successful is that committee in moving bills to the President’s desk? How does the activity in the most recent Congress compare to that from 40 years ago? Have the issues changed?

This activity is appropriate for grades 9 -12.

March on Washington: Explore, Learn, Teach, View, Discover
Learn about and celebrate the March on Washington with these great resources from PBS LearningMedia! After one resource view you will be prompted to create a free account to explore the entire collection. You can learn about the events that took place at the Lincoln Memorial during the 1963 March on Washington, teach your students about King’s rhetorical influences and more while analyzing his “I Have a Dream” speech, view the Civil Rights Act (1964) signed by President Johnson which prohibited discrimination in public places, made employment discrimination illegal and more, and discover the life, works, and beliefs of the late writer and civil rights activist, James Baldwin.

Martin Luther King “I Have a Dream"
YouTube Video

Martin Luther King, Jr. Cryptogram
Unscramble the words by placing the correct letter in the shaded boxes. Use the numbered boxes to complete the answer to the riddle.

Sixties Expert...Who Me? -- The 1960's and Civil Rights Legislation

This WebQuest was developed to introduce students to the idea that political parties occasionally work together to achieve legislative results. Often the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is assumed to have been strictly the result of Democrats' efforts to guarantee equal rights for all Americans. This assignment clearly shows that civil rights legislation in the mid-1960s owed its passage to the support of both political parties. The lesson asks students to take on the role of an average high school senior asked to do research about the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Stand Up For Your Rights
This site talks about civil rights.  It features such subjects as  women and the vote, school desegregation, and religious freedom.  Profiled are Anne Hutchinson, Alice Paul, and Little Rock, Arkansas. Do you think you know a thing or two about civil rights?  If so, while visiting this site test your civil rights brainpower by taking the short, challenging quiz found on the PBS American Experience Game Space.

The 1960's and Civil Rights Legislation

Choose the correct answer for each question. Check your answers by clicking on the "Well...How Did I Do?" button at the end of the quiz.

Return to Tour

Every session of Congress begins with a prayer by a paid preacher whose salary has been paid by the taxpayer since 1777.

Surf with Uncle Sam
Surf with Uncle Sam

Word Spy
Word Spy

Projects You Can Do

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