“Equal Justice Under Law”
These words, written above the main entrance to the Supreme Court Building, express the ultimate responsibility of the Supreme Court of the United States. The Court is the highest tribunal in the Nation for all cases and controversies arising under the Constitution or the laws of the United States. As the final arbiter of the law, the Court is charged with ensuring the American people the promise of equal justice under law and, thereby, also functions as guardian and interpreter of the Constitution.
The Supreme Court consists of the Chief Justice of the United States and such number of Associate Justices as may be fixed by Congress. The number of Associate Justices is currently fixed at eight. Power to nominate the Justices is vested in the President of the United States, and appointments are made with the advice and consent of the Senate. (Source)
Learn About the Supreme Court
Last night, the news of the death of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg hit main stream media and social media within minutes. Immediately, news reporters and political pundits alike began sharing both their experiences and opinions of her 30+ year tenure on the Supreme Court, as well as predictions about how quickly a nomination to replace her will come.
Justice Ginsburg’s death has left a vacancy in the Supreme Court a mere 46 days before the 2020 Presidential election, marking a very important moment in history as well as a somewhat unique situation in American politics.
Why not take this time time to teach your children about the function of the judiciary branch of the U.S. Government, while bringing in information about the election process as it relates to the appointment of the next Justice?
United States Supreme Court (Kids Brittanica)
Supreme Court Facts for Kids (Kiddle)
How the Court Works (Supreme Court Historical Society)
How the Supreme Court Works (infographic)
Unit Studies and Lesson Plans
Constitution Celebration (grades K-4)
American Government (grades K-12)
Elections 2020 (Grades K-12)
The Power and Importance of Precedent in the Decisions of the Supreme Court (Lesson Plans for High School Students)
Take a virtual tour of the Supreme Court Building.
Participate in interactive landmark Supreme Court cases that have shaped history and have an impact on law-abiding citizens today.
Learn about the nomination process.
Take a Supreme Court quiz.
Read the biographies of the current Supreme Court Justices and write a character sketch of each (note: at the time this article was published, recently deceased Judge Ruth Bader Ginsberg has not yet been replaced).
How Does the U.S. Government Work by Universal Politics
The U.S. Constitution and You by Syl Sobel
The Supreme Court by Christina Taylor-Butler
Our Supreme Court: A History with 14 Activities by Richard Panchyk
The U.S. Supreme Court by Muriel L. Dubois
Order in the Court: A Look at the Judicial Branch by Kathiann Kowalski
The Judicial Branch by Pete DiPrimio
Marshall, the Courthouse Mouse: A Tail of the U.S. Supreme Court by Peter W. Barnes
Meet My Grandmother: She’s a Supreme Court Justice by Lisa Tucker McElroy (out of print but may be available at your library)
Thurgood by Jonah Winter
Thurgood Marshall (Childhood of Famous Americans) by Montrew Dunham
Turning Pages: My Life Story by Sonia Sotomayor
Who is Ruth Bader Ginsberg by Patricia Brenner Demuth
Who is Sonia Sotomayor by Megan Stine
The Supreme Court of the United States: A Student Companion by John J. Patrick
Oliver Wendell Holmes: Sage of the Supreme Court by G. Edward White
We the Students: Supreme Court Cases for and About Students by Jamin B. Raskin
Brown vs. the Board of Education: A Fight for Simple Justice by Susan Goldman Rubin
Compelling Interest: The Real Story Behind Roe v. Wade by Roger Reslin (parental guidance suggested – recommended for older high school students)
The Dred Scott Case: Slavery and Citizenship by D J Herda
Engel vs. Vitale: Prayer in the Schools by Susan Dudley Gold
US vs Nixon: The Limits of Presidential Privilege by Rebecca Stefoff
What is the Supreme Court?
Supreme Court of the Unit States Procedures
How Do United States Supreme Court Justices Get Appointed