2014 Information about the "Celebrate Freedom Week" law in Texas

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Celebrate Freedom Week

Sweeny Independent School District

September 15 – 19th 2014

Information about the "Celebrate Freedom Week" law in Texas:

(Effective September 1, 2001)

 Text of the enrolled Bill in the Texas Legislature: "AN ACT relating to the establishment of Celebrate Freedom Week in public schools."

Instruction should include study of:

  • The intent, meaning, and importance of the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution, including the Bill of Rights, in their historical context.

  • The study of the Declaration of Independence should include the relationship of the ideas expressed in that document to subsequent American history, including but not limited to:

    • the relationship of its ideas to the rich diversity of our people as a nation of immigrants,

    • the American Revolution,

    • the formulation of the United States Constitution,

    • the abolitionist movement, which led to the Emancipation Proclamation and the women's suffrage movement.

  • During Celebrate Freedom Week, a school district may require students in grade levels 3 through 12 to study the text quoted below:

We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness--That to secure these Rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just Powers from the Consent of the Governed . . . ."

Celebrate Freedom Weekly Announcements

During the daily school announcements, you may use the following prepared announcements which are aligned to the TEKS/TAKS and the state law.

Announcements Download

Source: ESC Region 13

Grade: 3-12

Who Am I? - 10 minute Activities

For this activity, the student will use a graphic organizer to analyze and answer a “Who Am I?” question concerning Celebrate Freedom Week. There is a question for each day of the week and the activity should only take 10 minutes.


Source: ESC Region 13

Grade: 3 - 12

The Principles of the Declaration of Independence

In this lesson, the student will explain how the principles of government are reflected in the beginning of the Declaration of Independence.


Source: ESC Region 13

Grade: 3 - 12

ESC Region 13 Constitution Day Web Page

Activities and web sites are aligned to the requirements of the Celebrate Freedom Week state law.

Visit our Constitution Day page... (opens a new window) 

Source: ESC Region 13

Grade: 3 - 12

ESC Region 13 Women's Independence Web Page

Activities and web sites are aligned to requirements of the Celebrate Freedom Week state law.

Visit our Women's Independence Day page... (opens a new window) 

Source: ESC Region 13

Grade: 3 - 12

Law Focused Education

Activities, games, and lessons focused on "Celebrate Freedom Week" can be found on this web site.


Grade: 3 - 12

"Women, Their Rights, and Nothing Less"

Library of Congress American Memories Collection

Women obtained the right to vote nationwide in 1920. Before 1920, only criminals, the insane, Native Americans, and women were denied the vote. The modern woman's suffrage movement began in the 1840s with the Seneca Falls Convention. You've come a long way, baby. How did it happen and why? Students will understand the importance of primary sources in historical inquiry and describe and compare methods used by suffragists to pass the 19th amendment at the national level.

Source: Library of Congress

Grade: All Grades

Constitution Day Resources – for September 17th

  • C-SPAN Classroom has a number of helpful resources to help you teach your students about the Constitution.

    • Bell Ringers: Constitutional Foundation
      Over 30 short video clips related to the Constitution, including related vocabulary and discussion questions.

    • Lesson Idea: Constitution Day
      In this lesson, students will explore the history of the Constitution and the Framers' intentions, Constitutional interpretation, as well as relevant examples of how the Constitution affects our lives today.

    • Lesson Idea: Constitution Clips Quest
      A lesson in which students can search for their own Constitution Clips using C-SPAN’s Video Library. 

    • Video Clips: Constitution Clips 
      Short video clips that feature Presidents, Members of Congress, Judges, and historians discussing specific aspects of the Constitution. The videos are linked directly from the text of the Constitution for easy navigation and access.

    • Video Clip: James Madison - Father of the Constitution
      A 5 minute clip of Richard Brookhiser discussing James Madison's role in the creation of the Constitution.

    • Video Clip: The Living Constitution vs Originalism
      A 4 minute clip of Supreme Court Justices Breyer and Scalia discussing their views on Constitutional interpretation.

  • Video: U.S. House Reading of the Constitution   
    A 1 hour long program of U.S. House members reading the Constitution aloud on the House floor.

Center for Civic Education Lesson Plans


New York Times Constitution Lessons

 New York Times Constitution Lessons

The Constitutional Sources Project

The Constitutional Sources Project is hosting a Constitution Day Essay Contest.  See the website for the essay contest details and lesson plan resources for teaching the Constitution.


Links organized by topic area for Freedom Week

The American Revolution

  1. Liberty! The American Revolution by PBS

  2. Virtual Marching Tour of the American Revolution

The Declaration of Independence

  1. CSUSM: The Declaration of Independence - text version of the Declaration including the list of colonial representatives who signed it.

  2. A good list of events leading up to the Declaration from About.com

  3. Declaring Independence: Drafting the Documents - see a chronology of events in the creation of this famous document from the Library of Congress.

The US Constitution

  1. The US Constitution online - includes hyperlinked definitions for many words

  2. Creation of the U.S. Constitution - contains a very complete account of the Constitutional Convention. (from the US National Archives)

The Abolitionist Movement

  1. The Underground Railroad @ nationalgeographic.com - this site lets you follow the footsteps of Harriet Tubman, who led hundreds of runaway slaves to freedom. The site includes a short interactive journey, maps, a timeline, and more.

  2. Abolition Documents - Library of Congress collection of slavery and important antislavery publications from the period. Includes actual images of broadsides, sermons, handbills, newspapers, and more.

  3. Slavery and Politics: 1517 - 1863 from The Encyclopedia Britannica Guide to Black History

  4. Harriet Tubman: American Abolitionist - biography of this great woman who singlehandedly led over 300 slaves to safety in the years 1850 to 1860.

  5. Sojourner Truth - American Abolitionist - biography of this former slave who fought against slavery.

  6. Frederick Douglass: Abolitionist - biography from the Gale Salutes Black History Month site.

The Emancipation Proclamation

  1. The Emancipation Proclamation - Learn about this document that transformed the character of the Civil War and became one of the great documents of human freedom. See the original too, from the National Archives and Records Administration.

  2. Emancipation Proclamation from Encyclopedia Britannica - learn about this edict issued by President Abraham Lincoln on Jan. 1, 1863, that freed the slaves of the Confederate states in rebellion against the Union. See an image of the original document too.

  3. African American Odyssey: The Civil War - historic archives explore black history during this turbulent era, including slaves as "contraband" and Lincoln's Emancipation Proclamation.

  4. African-American Mosaic (Library of Congress): Conflict of Abolition and Slavery

The Women's Suffrage Movement

  1. The Women's Suffrage Movement from the US National Archives

  2. Leaders in the Women's Suffrage Movement from Worldbook.com

  3. One Woman, One Vote - A PBS documentary

Other Resources

  • Biographies from the Age of Revolution

  • U.S. Founding Documents - Full text versions and scanned copies of the originals

  • The Avalon Project: Documents in Law, History, and Diplomacy from Yale University

  • George Washington at War (Smithsonian artifacts)

  • The Star Spangled Banner website (Smithsonian)


Recommended iPad apps for Social Studies: www.tcea.org/ipad

Tap the Social Studies tab for categories. Shaded titles are free in the iTunes store.

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