Lesson Plans: A Unit on Religious Freedom

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The following lesson plans comprise a unit that uses television as a learning tool in the subject areas of American History, Civics, and Government and are written for grades 7-12. These classroom activities include: learning objectives; an outline of the relevant national standards met by the plans; a list of necessary tools and materials; a notation regarding the total time needed to complete the individual lessons; a teaching strategy; assessment recommendations; and extension ideas.

Lesson #1: Freedom of Religion: A Supreme Court Simulation

What are the clauses protecting religious practice in the First Amendment? What do they mean and how do they apply to land held sacred by several American Indian nations? How does the Supreme Court function to resolve conflicts arising under the First Amendment? Students will engage in research and interactive exercises to discover the answers to these questions.

Lesson #2: Sacred Ground or Federal Ground? A Conflict Resolution Role Play

The subject of this lesson is a controversy that has deep roots in American History, the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Students will learn about the concept of "rights in conflict" arising under the First Amendment (freedom of religion) and through research and role playing, they will interpret a conflict from multiple perspectives, advocate for a point of view and learn how to reach a resolve the conflict.