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EGP 335: Unit Plan Lesson Plan

Author: Allie Broomall


Unit: US Government
Lesson: Judicial Branch: The Supreme Court Justices Lesson 9

Lesson Preparation
I. Learning Objectives
a. Students will be able to identify the Judicial Branch of government and its
function.
b. Students will be able to identify and describe the nine Supreme Court Justices.
c. Students will be able to conduct research on a specific topic and create a short
presentation on the Supreme Court Justices.

II. Standards by Discipline and Content Themes


a. Social Studies
i. Standard - 5.3.C.F- Explain the Supreme Courts role in interpreting the
U.S. Constitution.
1. Individual rights
2. States rights
3. Civil rights
ii. Standard - CC.1.4.3.V - Conduct short research projects that build knowledge
about a topic
b. NCSS Theme:
i. V. Power, Authority, and Governance
1. H) Recognize and give examples of the tensions between the wants
and needs of individuals and groups, and concepts such as fairness,
equity and justice.
2. E) Distinguish among local, state, and national government and
identify representative leaders at these levels such as mayor, governor,
and president
III. Academic Language
a. The Judicial Branch is the branch that reviews and interprets the laws. The
Judicial Branch is made up of federal and state courts.
b. The Supreme Court is a federal court. It is the highest body in the Judicial Branch.
There are a total of nine justices on the Supreme Court.
c. The Supreme Court Justices include a Chief Justice and eight associate Justices.
All Justices are appointed by the President and confirmed by the Senate. They
serve on the Court as long as they choose, and can only be removed through
impeachment. The Chief Justice has seniority over all justices.

IV. Technology, Materials, Resources


a. SMARTBoard
b. Video from YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TWgeVyISK34
c. iPads for each student for researching
d. Puppet Pals app
e. Worksheet for research: Become an Expert!
f. Student journals for closure: check for understanding

Instructional Delivery
V. Anticipatory Set
a. Throughout the lesson, the students will learn about the people involved in the
Judicial Branch, specifically those on the Supreme Court.
b. In order to engage students before the lesson, an informational video for kids
about the judicial branch, including the people involved in each of the courts, will
be shown to the class.
c. The teacher will show the video from YouTube:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TWgeVyISK34

VI. Instructional Activities


a. Instruction begins with a review of what the students have been learning in the
past few days about the Judicial Branch and its function.
i. The Judicial Branch is the branch that reviews and interprets the laws. The
Judicial Branch is made up of federal and state courts.
b. The teacher will explain how the Judicial Branch is made up of many judges at
the various levels: Supreme Court, federal, local, and appellate
c. An overview of the Supreme Court Justices will be given by the teacher.
i. The Supreme Court is a federal court. It is the highest body in the Judicial
Branch. There are a total of nine justices on the Supreme Court.
d. With the use of the SMARTBoard, the teacher will pull up a picture of the
Supreme Court Justices and review the names of each justice, and points out the
Chief Justice. The Chief Justice has seniority over all justices.
i. The Justices are: Chief Justice John G. Roberts, Jr, Associate Justice Ruth
Bader Ginsburg, Associate Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, Associate
Justice Clarence Thomas, Associate Justice Stephen G. Breyer. Associate
Justice Elena Kagan, Associate Justice Samuel A. Alito, Jr., Associate
Justice Sonia Sotomayor, Associate Justice Neil M. Gorsuch.
e. An explanation of how justices are appointed (by the President) and how long
they serve (as long as they choose) is then explained by the teacher.
f. After this overview of the Supreme Court Justices, the teacher will then move the
class into the main activity for the day.
g. Students will be split into groups to research a specific Supreme Court Justice. In
a class of 25, there will be 2-3 people in each group.
h. The teacher will assign a section of desks for each group to sit at.
i. The teacher will assign one Supreme Court Justice to each group. The groups will
be provided a worksheet that will aid them while recording their facts.
j. Teacher provides each student with an iPad in order to conduct research.
Questions such as, How long has your justice served on the Supreme Court?
What is a fun fact about your justice? will be asked on the worksheet.
k. An explanation of the assignment is explained to the class. Each group of students
is assigned a specific Supreme Court Justice. As a group, the students will
research to become experts on their Justice. Students will be instructed to do their
best to answer the questions on their worksheet.
l. The teacher will then explain that each group will use their iPad and the Puppet
Pals app to create a short presentation on their Justice, and will present it to the
class once everyone has finished.
m. About 20 minutes will be provided for students to conduct research on their
Justice. The teacher will walk around the room to help groups if they have
questions or concerns.
n. Once students have finished researching, the teacher will instruct the groups to
begin using the Puppet Pals app to create an animation of their justice in the
court room (students have previously used this app). The animation must include
the facts they collected that answered the questions on their worksheet (name,
birthdate, date appointed, how long they have served, one interesting fact).
o. About 20 minutes will be provided for each group to create their Puppet Pal
animation.
p. After each group has finished, the teacher will ask for a volunteer group to come
up and present their animation to the class. Each student in the group will be
asked to contribute during the presentation. Each group will present their
animation to the class with the use of the iPad.
VII. Closure
a. The closure will include a review on the definition of the Supreme Court, the
Supreme Court Justices, and the names of each justice.
b. As a formative assessment and check for understanding, students will write in
their journals about the 2 things they remember from the Supreme Court Justice
they were instructed to research, and will be asked to explain what the Supreme
Courts job is.
Meeting All Learners
VIII. Differentiation
a. The research groups will include students of various learning levels, allowing for
different strengths and abilities to work together. This will allow for peer support
during research and construction of the Puppet Pals animation.
b. Requiring each student to talk during the presentation of the animation will allow
for equal contribution from all students during the lesson.
c. Multiple intelligences will be met during this lesson.
i. The use of iPads, videos, and the Puppet Pals app will meet the needs of
visual-spatial learners.
ii. The use of group work will meet the needs of interpersonal learners.
iii. The Puppet Pals app allows students to choose music to go along with
their animation, meeting the needs of musical-rhythmic learners.
IX. Accommodations
a. Student who has an IEP/504 will be paired with a note taker who will aid the
student as they complete the Become an Expert! worksheet.
b. Student with an IEP/504 stating they need accommodations with written
assignments will be asked to verbally explain the Supreme Courts job and
Supreme Court Justice rather than having to write it within their journal.

X. Modifications
a. Student with an IEP/504 stating they need modifications to writing assignments
will be given the task of researching and completing three questions on the
worksheet rather than five.
Meeting Objectives
XI. Assessments
a. The Become an Expert! student answers will be used as a formative assessment
to check for student understanding (objective b and c).
b. The Puppet Pals presentation will serve as a formative assessment to check for
student understanding (objective b and c).
c. The writing in students journals will serve as a formative assessments and will
allow the teacher to check for understanding of the topic (objective a and b).
The Supreme Court Justices
Become An Expert!

1. What is the name of your Supreme Court Justice?

2. When was he/she born?

3. What year did your Supreme Court Justice get appointed by the President?

4. How long has your justice served on the Supreme Court?

5. What is the function of a Supreme Court Justice?

6. What is one interesting fact you found about your justice? Why did you choose this
fact?