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Virginia Journal of Education

The Resource

How the Supreme Court
Affects Our Daily Lives

Decisions of the U.S. Supreme Court have the power to change the everyday lives of American citizens, and the Bill of Rights Institute, a nonprofit educational organization, wants to help your students understand those decisions better. The Institute has released Supreme Court DBQs: Exploring the Cases that Changed History, an online and print resource.

From Dred Scott v. Sanford in 1857, through Brown v. Board of Education in 1954 and Roe v. Wade in 1973 and other historic cases, each of the six units includes majority and dissenting opinions and explores such issues as equal protection and affirmative action, personal liberty, rights of the accused, and students and the Constitution. Also included are primary source documents and background essays.

For more information on Supreme Court DBQs, visit or call (800) 838-7870, ext. 18.

Research-Based Resources

Mid-continent Research for Education and Learning (McREL), which began over 30 years ago as one of the federal government's regional education laboratories, continues today to offer research-based resources for educators. At its website, you'll find lesson plans and resources in the arts, behavioral/social sciences, civics, economics, foreign language, geography, health/physical education, history, language arts, math, science, technology and multi-disciplinary areas.

To see the lesson plans, visit .

Reading the Classics
On Your Screen

Fiction, nonfiction, young readers, poetry, short stories, Shakespeare, drama, classical-you'll find it all at the Classic Reader website, and it's all for free. You can read, search or even add personal annotations to any of the works offered on the site, which is sorted by author and offers a search function. A selection of author biographies and portraits is also available.

While all functions are free, some may require registration. New works are added to the collection regularly. To visit the site, go to .

Website Features
Expert Content

With content provided by such experts as the Kennedy Center, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Smithsonian Institution, National Geographic and the International Society for Technology in Education, the Thinkfinity website has a lot to offer to help you sharpen your classroom offerings. Thinkfinity is a joint project of the Marco Polo website and the Verizon Literacy Network, and its content areas include the arts, economics, the humanities, math and science. You'll find lesson plans, reviewed websites, materials for your students, classroom activities and assessment materials. There is no charge, but registration is required.

To check it out, visit .


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