School_House_Rock!

The Preamble Singalong (Schoolhouse Rock)

Posted Eureka Lessons American Government, Lessons

The Preamble to the Constitution

We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Questions for Discussion

  1. What is the significance of starting the Preamble with “We the people”?
  2. What kinds of things do you think are included in the “general welfare” of a country?  (Think about health care, education, etc.)
  3. Why do you think the framers of the Constitution made the Preamble so vague (or open-ended)?
[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yHp7sMqPL0g]

Lyrics

Hey, do you know about the U.S.A.? Do you know about the government? Can you tell me about the Constitution? Hey, learn about the U.S.A.

In 1787 I'm told
Our founding fathers did agree
To write a list of principles
For keepin' people free.

The U.S.A. was just startin' out.
A whole brand-new country.
And so our people spelled it out
The things that we should be.

And they put those principles down on paper and called it the Constitution, and it's been helping us run our country ever since then. The first part of the Constitution is called the preamble and tells what those founding fathers set out to do.

We the people,
In order to form a more perfect union,
Establish justice, insure domestic tranquility,
Provide for the common defense,
Promote the general welfare and
Secure the blessings of liberty
To ourselves and our posterity
Do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

In 1787 I'm told
Our founding fathers all sat down
And wrote a list of principles
That's known the world around.

The U.S.A. was just starting out
A whole brand-new country.
And so our people spelled it out
They wanted a land of liberty.

And the Preamble goes like this:

We the people,
In order to form a more perfect union,
Establish justice, insure domestic tranquility,
Provide for the common defense,
Promote the general welfare and
Secure the blessings of liberty
To ourselves and our posterity
Do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

For the United States of America...

Note:
The lyrics here have a slightly abridged wording of the Preamble to the United States Constitution. The actual document starts, "We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union..."