Teaching AP Government in a Shortened Semester- Unit Two Resources on Congress

I’ve divided this unit into three pieces, starting with Congress during the same week the impeachment trial is occurring which means I will take time each day to discuss where we are at in the trial as it relates to the curriculum. This one has been a challenge for me because I used to spend so much time on Congress, but this series and semester is about paring down, teaching students what they need to know, and spending extra time on the application of learning.

Unit 2: Interactions Among Branches of Government –Congress (2 normal class periods and a block day)

Enduring Understandings:

  • The republican ideal in the US in manifested in the structure and operation of the legislative branch.

AP Writing Skills (this is for the Unit as a whole)

  • Concept Application
  • Data Analysis
  • SCOTUS Application
  • Argumentative Essay- Evidence 

Required Documents:

  • Constitution
    • Article I, Section 8 Powers of Congress

Supreme Court Cases:

  • Baker v. Carr
  • Shaw v. Reno

Key Vocabulary:

Part I- Congress

  1. Necessary and Proper Clause
  2. Speaker of the House
  3. President of the Senate
  4. Filibuster (Senate)
  5. Cloture (Senate)
  6. Senate hold
  7. Unanimous consent (Senate)
  8. Rules Committee (House)
  9. Committee of the Whole (House)
  10. Discharge petitions (House)
  11. Mandatory spending
  12. Discretionary spending
  13. Entitlement costs
  14. Tax revenue
  15. Deficit
  16. Debt
  17. Pork-barrel legislation
  18. Logrolling
  19. Gerrymandering
  20. Redistricting
  21. Lame-duck appointments
  22. Trustee
  23. Delegate
  24. Politico


Other resources:

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