Teaching AP Government in a Shortened Semester- Unit One Resources

To start off the series, I wanted to make a resource page; for myself, for my students, and for any teacher out there who needs it. This is what I will be drawing from as I plan this unit. Today, I took all the stickies off my CED and put the information in a document. I may or may not use the resources here. I have listened to all the podcasts, watched all the clips and videos, and have done all the readings. I am also using Google Classroom to help facilitate discussions outside of class and allow collaboration. This is my first time using it so send positive thoughts…

Unit 1: Foundations of American Democracy-  ~8 class periods

Enduring Understandings (Focus Areas so I don’t get too off track)

  • A balance between governmental power and individual rights has been a hallmark of American political development. 
  • The Constitution emerged from the debate about the weaknesses in the Articles of Confederation as a blueprint for limited government. 
  • The Constitution created a competitive policy-making process to ensure the people’s will is represented and that freedom is preserved.
  • Federalism reflects the dynamic distribution of power between national and state governments. 

AP Writing Skills:

  • Analytical Reading
  • Argumentative FRQ Writing- I am going to focus on writing a defensible thesis that establishes a line of reasoning. 
  • SCOTUS application

Required Documents: 

Supreme Court Cases:



1.7 Constitution USA- A More Perfect Union (57 Minutes)Video Guide and Resources

Other resources:

You must be logged in to My AP to access the following:

  • Analytical Reading Activity Topic 1.1: Ideals of Democracy Required Document: excerpts from The Declaration of Independence
  • Analytical Reading Activity Topic 1.3: Government Power and Individual Rights-Required Documents: excerpts from Federalist 10 & excerpts from Brutus 1
  • Analytical Reading Activity Topic 1.4: Challenges of the Articles of Confederation Required Document: excerpts from Articles of Confederation
  • Analytical Reading Activity Topic 1.6: Principles of American Government Required Document: excerpts from Federalist 51 *I will skip New York v. Clinton for time sake
  • Analytical Reading Activity Topic 1.8: Constitutional Interpretations of Federalism Required Document: The Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States

4 thoughts on “Teaching AP Government in a Shortened Semester- Unit One Resources

  1. Hey there! This looks GREAT! I am teaching APUSH for the first time this Spring so I might try to do something similar. I really like this layout especially to give students. One question I do have is regarding the podcasts—are students required to listen to all of them? I adore podcasts and want to incorporate them more.


    1. Elizabeth Schley, NBCT 30 Dec 2019 — 12:04 pm

      Hello! I’m not requiring all of them but I am requiring a few and then leaving the rest for them if they need the extra help!


  2. Thank you! Will you be posting for each unit? This is very helpful and I appreciate all the work you have put forth!


  3. This is awesome. Thank you for putting in all this hard work. I appreciate your willingness to share it with all of us. Thank you!!


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