A Special Page Devoted to Teaching the U.S. Constitution
The work of many minds, the Constitution stands as a model of cooperative statesmanship and the art of compromise.
In Philadelphia on May 14, 1787, the Federal Convention convened to revise the Articles of Confederation. But through discussion and debate it became clear that rather than amend the existing Articles, the Convention would draft an entirely new frame of government. All through the summer, in closed sessions, the delegates debated, and redrafted the articles of the new Constitution. Among the chief points at issue were how much power to allow the central government, how many representatives in Congress to allow each state, and how these representatives should be elected.
Use this page to find primary sources related to the Constitution and the "big ideas" it contains, as well as document-based learning activities to share with your students.
DocsTeach is a product of the National Archives education division. Our mission is to engage, educate, and inspire all learners to discover and explore the records of the American people preserved by the National Archives.
The National Archives and Records Administration is the nation's record keeper. We save documents and other materials created in the course of business conducted by the U.S. Federal government that are judged to have continuing value. We hold in trust for the public the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights — but also the records of ordinary citizens — at our locations around the country.