United States History Honors Summer Assignment

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United States History Honors

Summer Assignment

DBQ Material:

Responses should be typed and cite evidence directly from the passages provided. Any suspicion of plagiarism will result in a non-submission of assignment. Failure to complete assignment by the start of the fall semester or suspicion of plagiarism will result in a 5% loss of class average for the first semester grade.
Background Question:

  1. In what city and year was the Constitution written? Why was this document written years after the establishment of the nation?

  1. What were two or three weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation?

  1. What was James Madison’s great concern about framing a new constitution?

  1. What is an example of tyranny by the few?

  1. Define each of the following terms:

    1. constitution

    1. Articles of Confederation

    1. frame (as in to frame, construct)

    1. tyranny

  • 1783: Treaty of Paris ends American Revolution

  • 1787:Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia

Understanding the Question:

  1. What is the analytical question asked by this DBQ?

  1. What terms in the question need to be defined?

  1. Rewrite the question in your own words.

Focus Questions:
Document A

  1. Define how the two pieces of Madison’s “compound” government work?

  1. Provide two examples of how federalism continues to work today.

  1. How does this compound government model provide a element of “double security” to the people? Does this protect against tyranny?

  1. What patterns do you see in powers reserved for the states?

Document B

  1. What is the central theme of Madison’s quote?

  1. Does Madison believe that it is possible to have tyranny in a democracy? Explain.

  1. What is the central role of each branch of the federal system?

  1. How does separation of powers guard against tyranny?

Document C

  1. Provide one or two examples of how the legislature can check the power of the chief executive.

  1. Provide one or two examples of how the executive can check the power of the judiciary.

  1. Provide one or two examples of how the judiciary can check the power of the legislature.

  1. What does this structure imply about the focus of the framers concerning the sharing of power?

Document D

  1. On what basis was the number of representatives in the lower House determined?

  1. What states had the smallest number of seats in the House of Representatives? Who were the bottom three states in terms of representation?

  1. Define the geographic challenged some states faced over others in the House. How did the small states guard to balance power within Congress?

DBQ Assignment:
Use the evidence provided to create a 6-paragraph essay with a thesis statement relating to the topic How Did the Constitution Guard Against Tyranny? Your essay should include an introduction, one body paragraph for each piece of evidence, and a conclusion. The evidence included within your body paragraphs should be cited from the documents provided. Be sure to provide analysis to explain how the evidence you have chosen relates to your thesis statement. Refer to attached rubric for additional information and scoring guidelines.

Document A
Source: James Madison, Federalist Paper #51, 1788.
"In the compound republic of America, the power surrendered by the people is first divided between two distinct governments, and the portion allotted to each subdivided among distinct and separate departments. Hence a double security arises to the rights of the people. The different governments will each control each other, at the same time that each will be controlled by itself."

Note: Madison's idea of division of power between central and state governments is known as Federalism. Specific power divisions can be seen in the chart below.

Document B
Source: James Madison, Federalist Paper #47.
"The accumulation of all powers, legislative, executive, and judiciary, in the same hands, whether of one, a few, or many, and whether heredity', self-appointed, or elective, may be justly pronounced the very definition of tyranny.... liberty requires that the three great departments of power should be separate and distinct.
Source: Constitution of the United States of America, 1787.
Article 1, Section 1

All legislative powers herein granted shall "be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.

Article 2, Section 1, Clause 1

The executive power shall be vested in a President of the United States. He shall hold his office during the term of four years, and, (serve) together with the Vice-President, chosen for the same term....

Article 3, Section 1

The judicial power of the United States shall be invested in one Supreme Court, and in such inferior courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. The judges, both of the supreme and the inferior courts, shall hold their offices during good behavior....

Document C
"...the constant aim is to divide and arrange the several offices in such a manner as that they may be a check on the other.... (The three branches) should not be so far separated as to have no constitutional control over each other."

Document D
Article 1, Section 2, House of Representatives

Clause 3: Representatives ... shall be apportioned ... according to ... (population).... The number of representatives shall not exceed one for every thirty thousand, but each state shall have at least one representative; and until (a census is taken within three years) the state of New Hampshire shall be entitled to three, Massachusetts eight, Rhode Island ... one, Connecticut five, New York six, New Jersey four, Pennsylvania eight, Delaware one, Maryland six, Virginia ten, North Carolina five, South Carolina five, and Georgia three.

Article 1, Section 3, Senate

Clause 1: The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two senators from each state, chosen by the legislatures thereof for six years; and each senator shall have one vote.

Please label the following features on the attached map:

STATES: Great Lakes:

1. Alabama 1. Lake Superior

2. Alaska 2. Lake Michigan

3. Arizona 3. Lake Huron

4. Arkansas 4. Lake Erie

5. California 5. Lake Ontario

6. Colorado

7. Connecticut

8. Delaware

9. Florida

10. Georgia

11. Hawaii

12. Idaho Oceans/Body of Water

13. Illinois 1. Atlantic Ocean

14. Indiana 2. Pacific Ocean

15. Iowa 3. Gulf of Mexico

16. Kansas

17. Kentucky

18. Louisiana

19. Maine

20. Maryland

21. Massachusetts Mountain Ranges

22. Michigan 1. Appalachians

23. Minnesota 2. Rocky

24. Mississippi 3. Sierra Nevada

25. Missouri

26. Montana

27. Nebraska

28. Nevada

29. New Hampshire Rivers:

30. New Jersey 1. Mississippi River

31. New Mexico 2. Missouri River

32. New York 3. Ohio River

33. North Carolina 4. Rio Grande River

34. North Dakota 5. Colorado River

35. Ohio 6. Columbia River

36. Oklahoma 7. St. Lawrence River

37. Oregon 8. Hudson River

38. Pennsylvania

39. Rhode Island

40. South Carolina

41. South Dakota

42. Tennessee Physiographic Features

43. Texas 1. Ohio River Valley

44. Utah 2. Great Plains

45. Vermont

46. Virginia

47. Washington

48. West Virginia

49. Wisconsin

50. Wyoming

Rubric for United States Honors History Summer Assignment DBQ

Cover Sheet: (Name, Date, Class) 0……….………………….4
Included Rubric attached to the back of your paper 0…………………………..4

Does the writer present both an introduction and conclusion? 0…..1…..2…..3…..4

Is there a stated thesis statement (yes or no)? 0…………..…………4

Does the writer use evidence from the documents in each of the

four body paragraphs?


Does the writer present analysis supporting the evidence introduced

that links the ideas back to the thesis in each of the four body



Does the writer use proper mechanics including grammar, spelling, and


Is the paper presented in proper format including 12 point size font,

Times New Roman font, one-inch margins, and double-spaced?


Total:_____________________ / 32

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