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Lesson Plan 2

Lesson plan 2: Week 6 day 1

Lesson Title: Brown v. The Board of Education

Lesson Type: Analysis of Brown v. The Board of Education

Essential Question: Does the US still practice forms of segregation?

Florida Sun Shine State Standards:

–          SS.912.C.1 Demonstrate an understanding of the origins and purposes of government, law, and the American political system.

  • SS.912.C.1.5: Evaluate how the Constitution and its amendments reflect the political principles of rule of law, checks and balances, separation of powers, republicanism, democracy, and federalism.

–          SS.912.C.2: Evaluate the roles, rights, and responsibilities of United States citizens and determine methods of active participation in society, government, and the political system.

  • SS.912.C.2.6: Evaluate, take, and defend positions about rights protected by the Constitution and Bill of Rights.
  • SS.912.C.2.9: Identify the expansion of civil rights and liberties by examining the principles contained in primary documents.

–          SS.912.C.3 Demonstrate an understanding of the principles, functions, and organization of government.

  • SS.912.C.3.6: Analyze the structures, functions, and processes of the judicial branch as described in Article III of the Constitution.
  • SS.912.C.3.7: Describe the role of judicial review in American constitutional government.
  • SS.912.C.3.7: Describe the role of judicial review in American constitutional government.
  • SS.912.C.3.11: Contrast how the Constitution safeguards and limits individual rights.

–          SS.912.A.7 Understand the rise and continuing international influence of the United States as a world leader and the impact of contemporary social and political movements on American life.

  • SS.912.A.7.8: Analyze significant Supreme Court decisions relating to integration, busing, affirmative action, the rights of the accused, and reproductive rights.

–          SS.912.A.2 Understand the causes, course, and consequences of the Civil War and Reconstruction and its effects on the American people.

  • SS.912.A.2.4: Distinguish the freedoms guaranteed to African Americans and other groups with the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments to the Constitution.

Teacher Purpose & Case summary: 

The importance of this case is that it overturned Plessy v. Ferguson and ended the separate but equal clause. “That separate school systems for blacks and whites were inherently unequal, and thus, violate the “equal protection clause” of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Furthermore, relying on sociological tests, such as the one performed by social scientist Kenneth Clark, and other data, he also argued that segregated school systems had a tendency to make black children feel inferior to white children, and thus, such a system should not be legally permissible.”[1] This case set and changed the way the courts viewed and defined race. However, this does not mean that the US has completely stopped using forms of segregation. To this day there are still forms of segregation occurring in our society. It is important to teach the students this so they can understand the different types of segregation that still occur to this day. For example, we can consider race-based segregation, and class/socioeconomic status, and language. “Segregation in a series of concentric circles around a household and then aggregates these measures to the city level. As the circles grow, cities with scattered pockets of black residence (like Providence, Rhode Island) look increasingly integrated whereas cities with concentrated black belts (like Los Angeles) do not.”[2] This demonstrates that race based segregation occurs in the establishment of neighborhoods.


  1. Define what Brown v. The Board of Education was
  2. Analyze using primary and secondary source documents Brown v. The Board of Education.
  3. Discuss the importance of overturning the separate but equal clause.
  4. Explain the different forms of segregation that still occurs in the US.



  1. Computer
  2. Overhead projector
  3. Video clip Video clip on Brown v. Board of Education
  4. Secondary source document handout with case information secondary source document
  5. Primary source document handout on the judgment . see procedures for image.
  6. board or white board
  7. dry erase markers or chalk
  8. students will need
    1. paper
    2. pen


Lesson Procedures

Lesson Opener or Hook:

In order to introduce the students to Brown v. the Board of Education a film clip summarizing the case will be played. This will transition into the lesson which involves understanding overturning separate but equal as well as types of segregation.

Main Activity One:

–          After the students watch the film they will begin to read the secondary source document about the case. The secondary source document serves as a summary of what the case is, its importance, the term of separate but equal, desegregation, and segregation.


  • What was Brown v. The Board of Education?
  • Describe the importance of Brown v. The Board of Education?
  • What was segregation? Desegregation?
  • What case did Brown v. the Board of Education overturn?
  • Are some forms of segregation still practiced in the US today?


–          To conclude the lesson the students should answer the following question in a short essay format: Is segregation still practiced in the US today? Provide evidence to support your argument. This assignment should be a research assignment and given about a week to complete.











[1]History of Brown v. Board of Education.” United States Courts. http://www.uscourts.gov/EducationalResources/ConstitutionResources/LegalLandmarks/HistoryOfBrownVBoardOfEducation.aspx (accessed December 5, 2012).

[2] Boustan, Leah Platt, Racial Residential Segregation in American Cities

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