What is the Constitution? • It is the supreme law of the United States. • It is the framework for the organization of the United States government and for the relationship of the federal government with the states, citizens, and all people.
FUN FACTS • The US Constitution is 224 Years Old. • It took 116 days to write the original Constitution.
PREAMBLE • Describes the purpose of the document and government. • WE THE KIDS – BOOK – Mrs. Wilkins will read it to you. • Video on the next slide.
Meaning behind the Preamble • We the people of the United States – All of the people in our country • In order to form a more perfect union – to come together an make things better for everyone who lives in our country. • Establish Justice – To make things fair and honest for everyone. • Insure Domestic Tranquility – To make sure we can all have a nice life and get along with each other.
Continuing the Meaning of the Preamble • Provide for the common defense – To protect us from other people or countries who might try to harm us, like in war, and to help us if we have been harmed. • Promote the general welfare – To help make life good for everybody. Like having enough food, a place to live, being safe, etc. • And Secure the Blessing of Liberty – to protec t our rights and freedoms and not let anyone take them away.
Continuing the Meaning of the Preamble • To ourselves and our posterity – For kids, parents, other grown ups and all the people born in our country after we are. • Do ordain and establish the constitution – To write down and live by a list of rules and promises for our government to keep and our people to obey. • For the United States of America – For our country – where we live.
Brain Pop Video • Brain Pop Constitution Video
ARTICLES • Establish how the government is structured and how the Constitution can be changed. • There are 7 articles.
Article 1 - LEGISLATIVE BRANCH Elected representatives who make laws; at the federal level it is the Congress (Senate and House of Representatives).
Article 2 – Executive Branch Elected and appointed individuals who enforce laws; at the federal level the President heads this branch.
Article 3 – Judicial Branch Justices and judges who interpret laws through the court system; at the federal level it is the Supreme Court
Branches of Government Video Brain Pop Branches of Government
Remaining Articles • Article 4 – addresses relations among individual states. • Article 5 – discusses the Amendment process • Article 6 – “Supremacy Clause” - when federal laws conflict with state laws, the US Constitution and federal laws are more powerful than the state laws • Article 7 – Explains the ratification process (approval of Congress and ¾ States.)
AMENDMENTS There are 27 amendments (or changes) to the Constitution. The first 10 amendments are called the Bill of Rights Bill of Rights Brain Pop Video
Amendments • 1 – Freedom of religion, assembly, press, petition, and speech • 2 – Right to bear arms • 3 – No quartering in homes during times of peace • 4 – Protection from unreasonable search and seizure • 5 – Rights of accused persons; no double jeopardy, no self-incrimination, guarantees due process of law
Amendments • 6 – Rights to a fair and speedy trial • 7 – Trial by jury guaranteed in federal cases • 8 – Guarantees reasonable bail if arrested and protection from cruel and unusual punishment • 9 – Powers are reserved to the people if not delegated to the United States by the Constitution • 10 – Safeguards the powers of the states by stating that all powers not delegated to the US by the Constitution nor prohibited by it to the states are reserved to the states.
Principles of the US Constitution • Federalism – Power is shared between the states and federal government • Checks and Balances – Each branch of the federal government has the ability to check, or control, the power of the other 2 branches • Popular Sovereignty – the people are the final authority in government. The government receives its authority from the People.
Principles of the US Constitution • Individual Rights – Unalienable rights of the people that the federal government must protect. • Separation of Powers – The power of the federal government is separated in to 3 branches. • Republicanism – The people rule through elected representatives. • Limited Government – Government is limited to the power given to it by the Constitution.