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Chatham Schools celebrate Constitution Day

Posted Saturday, September 17, 2005

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Chatham County, NC - During the week of September 19, schools across Chatham County will honor the United States Constitution. Teachers in the Academically and Intellectually Gifted program (AIG) shared information with fellow teachers and have focused on the Constitution in their own classes in preparation. President George W. Bush signed September 17 as Constitution Day into law on December 8, 2004.

Schools across the United States and the military, both at home and overseas, participated in a simultaneous recitation of the Preamble on Friday, September 16. General Tommy Franks led the Preamble via film. The Preamble has previously been led by President George Bush, Sr., US Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Alabama Roy Moore, and Governor of Pennsylvania, Edward Rendell.

Celebration plans in Chatham County Schools:

Bennett: September 23 and Bonlee: September 20
AIG students have been researching the Constitution and its signers. All classes in the school will be invited to participate in a mock signing of the document using quill pens. Fourth and fifth grade AIG students will distribute information about the Constitution while dressed in period costumes representing the original delegate signers.

Chatham Middle
Fifth graders will study basic government ideas included in the Preamble to the Constitution. Lessons from the National Constitution Center will be used.

All students will have the opportunity to sign a mock constitution. Participants will receive an “I signed the Constitution” sticker. Middle school language arts students are reading a play about the Constitution. U. S. Congressman David Price will speak at the school on October 11.

Horton Middle: September 19
An assembly for fifth graders will be led by AIG students in period costumes that represent specific states and delegates to the Constitutional Convention. The delegates will be presented by name, the Preamble to the Constitution will be recited, and artwork will be displayed. Students have researched information about the original Convention.

J. S. Waters
Fourth and fifth graders will study the Preamble to the Constitution and its basic ideas about government. Lessons from the National Constitution Center will be used.

Moncure: September 20
The school is having a Constitution Day program through the media center. An informative video will be shown and artwork will be presented. Shhh! We're Writing the Constitution, by Jean Fritz, has been read and studied by 4th and 5th grade AIG students.

North Chatham: September 21
Fifth grade students have researched the history of the Constitution. Fifth grade AIG students will prepare a bulletin board and two display tables for “Sign the Constitution Day.” Students will share facts about the Constitution and invite other students to sign the document.

Pittsboro Elementary
Students have prepared “Constitution Questions of the Day” to be read during the school's morning announcements.

Siler City Elementary
Fourth graders will study the Preamble to the Constitution and its basic ideas about government. Lessons from the National Constitution Center will be used.

Silk Hope
Students have prepared “Constitution Questions of the Day” to be read during the school's morning announcements. Students in grades 3-8 have informative activities to complete. AIG students will prepare artwork.

high schools
The social studies departmental chairperson in each high school received lesson plans for grades 9-12 created by the National Constitution Center and the Center for Civic Education, a list of suggested Constitution Day activities, and a list of related web sites.

At Jordan-Matthews High School, students created Constitutional displays. “They were done by my first period honors Civics and Economics class and open for visitation for all Jordan-Matthews classes interested in attending, and each of the social studies classes in particular. The students are all tenth graders and had parts of the Constitution and its amendments divided up among groups including - Founding Fathers, Article 1 House of Representatives, Article 1 Senate, Article 1 Powers of Congress, Article 2, Article 3, Articles 4-7, Bill of Rights, Amendments 11-15, Amendments 16-21, Amendments 22-27. Each student set up a display and gave a brief verbal presentation to visiting classes. They had three classroom days to put together their projects using the Internet and print materials. They did their research in the library, in the classroom with textbooks, and using the American Legacy handout on the Constitution,” explained teacher P.J. Loman.

AIG teachers in the eleven elementary schools received lessons plans from the same organizations for kindergarten through eighth grade to implement and share, along with the suggested activities and web sites.

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