Supreme Court Lesson Plans

C-SPAN Classroom is a must-bookmark for anyone who teaches U.S. History. The large collection of free lesson plans is one of the things that keeps C-SPAN Classroom on the top of my list of go-to resources for more than a decade. And if you’re a member of C-SPAN Classroom (membership is free) you’ll get regular emails about updates to the collection of lesson plans. For example, the latest email highlighted the collection of free Supreme Court lesson plans.

C-SPAN Classroom’s collection of Supreme Court lesson plans is divided into four sections. Those four sections are The Process and Structure of the Judicial Branch, Judicial Interpretation, Supreme Court Cases, and History of the Supreme Court. All of the lesson plans follow the same structure of using video clips from C-SPAN’s library to introduce and explain a concept or court case followed by a set of discussion questions for students to answer. In most cases there is also a handout containing background information for students to read prior to watching the video clips. 

The Supreme Court Cases section includes lesson plans covering more than thirty landmark cases including Marbury v. Madison, Plessy v. Fergusson, Dred Scott v. Sandford, and Miranda v. Arizona.

The C-SPAN Classroom Supreme Court lesson plans are appropriate for high school classrooms although some of the lesson plans may be appropriate for a middle school classroom. 

On a related note, you can always use Google Scholar to locate federal and state court rulings. Here’s a demonstration of how to do that. 


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