A History of Political Parties in the U.S.
Great teachers from outstanding universities give instruction on federalism in this video from Thinkwell's online American Government series. In this video we discuss: A History of Political Parties in the U.S. The video uses lecture format, pictures, and a whiteboard to aid in the explanations. Run time 11:12.
Humanitarian Reform in the 1800s
This video is accompanied by text. "The Age of Reform--the decades prior to the Civil War--was a period of tremendous economic and political change. Many Americans believed that traditional values were undercut by the emerging industrial and market economy and they supported humanitarian and social reforms in an effort to create a new moral order. Some reformers, including those who embraced transcendentalism, promoted the divinity of the individual and sought to perfect human society. A number
Demography is the study of the characteristics of the human population, such as age, race, and gender. Political scientists use demography to identify and study specific target groups to determine who shows up at the polls versus who does not. In addition, these demographic groups enable political scientists to study voting trends, or what causes people to vote a particular way. Their studies not only yield statistics that can be used to forecast voter turnout in subsequent elections, but they a
The Declaration of Independence: Ideas for a New Age
This 17 minute examines the basic principles and concepts set forth in the Declaration of Independence, as well as the American leaders, their ideas and the historical events that resulted in the document. Good details. Best used with a timeline and a word list. Many items need a great deal more explanation, but the video is a good start.
Has video quiz, too.
An Educational Rap about Amendments 11-27
Rap lyrics to help students understand these amendments. Not much depth, but might give students ideas on ways to remember these amendments.
The Purpose and Intent of the Founders
This video is accompanied by text. "The Bill of Rights guarantees basic human and political rights to Americans. As an addendum to the United States Constitution, the document has evolved in scope through judicial interpretation.
Many states had a Bill of Rights in their own constitution and insisted that the protections be added to the federal document. Two states, North Carolina and Rhode Island, refused to ratify the Constitution until a Bill of Rights was included. Five other states,
Intensity and Voting
Voter intensity gauges the likelihood that people will vote and otherwise participate in elections. It is measured by how strongly people feel about their role as the electorate, whether they feel a personal stake in the policy agenda, and their degree of political socialization. (Video is narrated with slides and speeches.)
Campaign Finance Reform
Congress enacted campaign finance reform due to criticism directed toward interest groups and Political Action Committees (PACs). Federal Election Campaign Acts were passed in 1971, 1974, and 1976. Early legislation limited individual donations to candidates to $1,000 and $5,000 to PACs. PACs in turn may only donate $5,000 to individual candidates (Video is narrated with slides and speeches.)
Primaries, Caucuses, and Conventions
Political parties determine their presidential candidates through primaries, caucuses, and conventions. Until the early part of the twentieth century, every state used caucuses to choose a candidate. Caucuses began to lose favor because many of the “political machines” that controlled the caucuses were corrupt and did not necessarily carry out the will of the people. Still, caucuses continue to be used in 12 states. (Video is narrated with slides and speeches.)
Andrew Jackson: Reinventing the Presidency
Video discusses how Jackson fought in the Revolutionary War when he was just thirteen, how Jackson led the American army to the most surprising victory in its history in the Battle of New Orleans, how Jackson was the first great champion of the common white man -- but also "owned" over a hundred black Americans; how Jackson dramatically expanded the United States -- by brutally wresting vast regions of the south from Native Americans; how Jackson, in one of the boldest political strokes in histo
Presidential Management Models
Political scientists have examined several models for how presidents run the White House and control their administrations. These models are helpful in understanding the daily workings of the executive branch of government. (Video is narrated with slides and speeches.)
This video is accompanied by text and it is about the political situation and political causes of the American Revolution. "The Revolution generated radical changes in the principles, opinions, and sentiments of the American people. New ideas and issues affected social customs, political ideals, and gender and racial roles as the thirteen colonies evolved into the United States. Debate and conflict over government authority, diverse state economies, federal control of western territories, and th
This is a video accompanied by text. It is about the social situation and the social causes of the American Revolution. Although the concept of forming an autonomous American nation was not new, Thomas Paine’s call to create a democratic republic resonated with a growing number of colonists. By the late eighteenth century, many towns, particularly in Massachusetts, experienced republicanism firsthand in the form of town meetings and elections. Terminating the British monarch’s arbitrary auth
The Continental Congress
Video accompanied by text. "In response to the Patriot’s defiant outburst and the destruction of British goods during the Boston Tea Party, Parliament enacted several laws to tighten its control over the colonies. The Coercive Acts, called the Intolerable Acts by Americans, punished primarily Bostonians but affected people in all thirteen colonies.
The legislation increased Americans’ resentment toward Britain and galvanized the Patriot resistance. In September 1774, delegates from tw
The Great Declaration
Video accompanied by text. "By the end of 1775, the military conflicts with Great Britain increased the eagerness of many Patriots to declare their independence, but many other colonists, including influential members of the Second Continental Congress, were wary about breaking completely from the Crown. The ties to England remained strong for many Americans and the thought of losing their political and commercial connections to one of the world’s most powerful nations seemed irrational to the
The Declaration of Independence: Jefferson's Role
The 2nd Continental Congress appointed Thomas Jefferson to draft the Declaration of Independence. Good details about how Jefferson came up with some ideas for the Declaration using theme of an unjust King. Students need to have a copy of this document is go along with the video as well as a timeline of events that resulted in this work.
New Political Parties in 1828
This video is accompanied by text. "The political revolution stirred up by Jackson’s alternative staffing methods also resulted in the shift from a one-party political system to a two-party system. Although both Andrew Jackson and John Quincy Adams called themselves Republicans in the 1824 election, it was apparent that their political beliefs were not aligned. Between 1824 and 1828, the supporters of each candidate polarized into two political parties—the National-Republicans, those who sup
Jackson and the Bank War
Video accompanied by text. "In its first years, the Second Bank of the United States weathered an economic panic and an important court case. These were not, however, to be the last of its troubles. Other forces were at work that would oppose and eventually destroy the Second Bank of the United States..."
Early in the 1820s, Henry Clay, a representative from Kentucky and political rival of Jackson, advocated and helped implement what became known as the American System for developing a st
The Annexation of Texas
This video is accompanied by text. "When Mexico gained its independence from Spain, Texas was a sparsely settled frontier province bordering the United States. Texas, explored by the Spanish as early as the 1500s, was largely neglected in the centuries that followed. Only a few thousand Mexicans—known as Tejanos—lived in the province by the early 1820s, most of them clustered around the mission at San Antonio. The Mexican government encouraged Americans to emigrate to Texas in an effort to c
Effects of the War on the South
This video is accompanied by text. "Lincoln interpreted his re-election as a validation of his war policy—battling against the South for unity and emancipation. He charged General Ulysses S. Grant with the responsibility of surging forward toward Richmond, the Confederate capitol. Grant’s troops were finally successful in April of 1865, 1865, when Confederate General Robert E. Lee surrendered at Appomattox Courthouse. While the North savored the victory, the South took account of the costs o