What Does the Constitution Do? A rap song for teaching Articles I to VII, the President, Supreme Court, Congress and more.
This song presents the contents of Articles I to VII of the Constitution. It explains the structure of the US government including Congress, the executive branch, including President and Vice President, as well as the Supreme Court and its justices. It also discusses state's rights, Constitutional amendments, and approval of the Constitution. The teaching materials at the bottom of the page, including videos, lesson plans, worksheets, and activities help teachers and homeschool parents generate teaching ideas for the song topics. Students will better understand Articles I to VII of the Constitution.
This social studies song is suitable for introducing the US Constitution and supplementing Constitution Day activities for elementary school (4th grade, 5th grade and 6th grade), middle school, high school and home school students, and beginning college level classes.
What does the Constitution do?
What does the Constitution say?
Well listen up and I’ll tell you
About the Constitution
Article I establishes the Congress
It might seem simple but there’s guidelines beyond this
So follow along, y’all, we’re in for the long haul
As we explore the details of Congressional Protocol
The House of Representatives, yo, it’s mad large
435 representatives in all
They serve for two years, bigger states get more
But you can’t be a congressman if you’re only 24,
Now in the upper house of Congress, the one called the Senate
There’s 100 Senators under the Vice President
Two from every state with a six-year limit,
But you’ve gotta be 30 or else you can’t be in it
The rest of the article sets some more rules
Talks about the powers and the limits, too
But we got six more articles left to go
So if you’re enjoying, join in, and check the flow
Article II sets forth the executive branch
You’ve got president, vice president, and all that
The president has gotta American-born,
35 years of age or more
The rest of the article says what being President’s about:
His powers, his duties, and how we can kick him out
He’s Commander-in-Chief of all the military
But let’s get to Article III, about the judiciary
It sets up the Court Supreme
With justices regarded in the highest esteem
They serve for life, during all four seasons
And article III, it also defines treason
We’ve got three articles, we’re almost half done
So let’s review: we first had Article I
About the legislative branch; executive was II,
Judicial was III. Now you’re good? Let’s continue.
Next we got Article IV. It mandates that
The laws of one state are honored by the other states
It also promises full protections
Against invasions or insurrections
Article V describes how we can amend it:
2/3 of each Houses must recommend it
Then 3/4 of the states gotta approve
See, changing up the Constitution’s not an easy move
Article VI says this document’s the law of the land
And officials of the government must raise their hand
And swear an oath to uphold it, in every situation
And also swear allegiance to the U.S. nation
Article VII, there’s not much to it
Says if 9 of the colonies approve then we can use it
Now, every single one of them said it was OK
So the Constitution survives into the present day!
Now we’ve gone through the Articles, I through VII
We went kind of fast, so if you have any questions
Go back to the top, even make your own edits
A couple times through, I know you’re gonna get it
National Constitution Center
This site has a host of activities and information for middle school and high school students. Excellent site for projects or individual study as well.
This site has a long list of great topics and activities to tap into for classroom study and fun. Great for all ages but especially middle school and high school.
The Constitution of the United States
Provides a comprehensive history of the Constitution and a detailed summary of the document’s main points. Contains games (both print and interactive), glossary, links to US Government sites, etc. Excellent resource!
Individual pages for K-2, 3-5, 6-8, and 9-12
Features complete transcript of the Constitution and links to resources which describe its formation. Section with bios on all the signers. Excellent site for extra credit work.
Information about the writing of the Constitution its signers and all the Amendments, as well as the Great Compromise.
For younger students
US Constitution: Related: Not!
This site lists topics or ideas commonly believed to be addressed as part of the Constitution but in fact are not. Information about these topics tells where to find the topic or issue in other documents. Excellent for class discussion.
Lots of facts, games, puzzles and interesting information.
dirksencenter.org [The Dirksen Congressional Center]
Using the US Constitution as a guide, the activity asks students to write a classroom constitution.
(video) (log-in required)
Tim and Moby unpack the meaning behind the U.S. Constitution. Teaches the founding fathers’ plan for the government and the seven principles on which the Constitution is based.