Should your kids care about the inner workings of the Supreme Court? All answers point to YES. Explore these free resources for learning about the U.S. Supreme Court to help your homeschool learn more about the Judicial Branch of the government.
I, honestly, needed to know more about the government myself. That is why I knew I needed to teach my students so we all can learn.
I remember learning about it briefly in school. However, I don’t remember the details of the judicial branch.
I wanted to share what we studied in the Judicial Branch Lesson of the Government Unit.
What is the U.S. Supreme Court?
The Judicial Branch of government is the Supreme Court, the highest court in the United States. Then there are 13 Courts of Appeals, and at the lowest level are 94 U.S. District Courts that cover different regions of the country and hold most federal cases.
The role of the courts is to interpret the laws of Congress. Their role is NOT to make the laws but to uphold them, to make decisions on actual cases where proof says someone has been harmed.
Not many trials go through the Supreme Court. There are about 7,500 requests for cases to be reviewed by the Supreme Court each year. They only consider around 150 to be significant enough to review. The Supreme Court mostly reviews cases that have been appealed by the lower courts.
The Supreme Court’s role:
The very most important power the Supreme Court has, in my opinion, (just an opinion) is ensuring that each branch of government recognizes the limits of its own power. This is called the power of judicial review. Checks and balances are important in our government.
They have other important roles as well. It is the very last resort for those that feel they need the ultimate form of justice.
The Supreme Court plays a crucial role in civil rights and liberties by striking down laws that could potentially violate the Constitution.
And finally, according to USCourts.gov, the Supreme Court “sets appropriate limits on democratic government by ensuring that popular majorities cannot pass laws that harm and/or take undue advantage of unpopular minorities. In essence, it serves to ensure that the changing views of a majority do not undermine the fundamental values common to all Americans, i.e., freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and due process of law.”
What do Supreme Court Justices do?
Although the Constitution doesn’t specify how many Supreme Court Justices there should be, there were anywhere from 6 justices in the past to 9 justices. There have been 9 justices since 1869 until today.
The main idea behind this lifetime appointment is that they make decisions based on their conscience and are not swayed by outside forces or their needs to be re-elected/elected.
The federal judges of the Supreme Court are appointed for LIFE. So literally, the only way they can be removed is if they die or if they are impeached by Congress.
The judges, also called justices, are nominated by the President of the United States and appointed by the Senate.
Today, there is one Chief Justice and eight Associate Justices of the United States Supreme Court.
Grab these free resources for learning about the U.S. Supreme Court:
Civics & Government FREE Worksheets and FREE Printables | Education.com
3 Branches of Government for Kids Learning | How to Homeschool My Child
United States Supreme Court Worksheet FREEBIE | Merry Friends
Spotlight: The Supreme Court for Kids | Kids Discover
FREE Supreme Court Lesson Plans for K-12 | Share My Lesson
United States Supreme Court Justice FREE Printable Cards | Research Planet
FREE – United States Government – U.S. Supreme Court Posters | The Hardstad Collection
The Nation’s Court | TIME for Kids
Fast Fact: Supreme Court | News for Kids
Supreme Court of the United States facts for kids | Kids.Kiddle
The Supreme Court of the United States | We the People
Supreme Court – Videos, Worksheets, and More | Brain Pop
How Do US Supreme Court Justices Get Appointed? | The Kids Should See This
Learn about a few famous Supreme Court Judges/Justices:
Ruth Bader Ginsburg Biography FREE Worksheet | Education.com
Thurgood Marshall Biography | Mr. Nussbaum Learning + Fun
Biography and FREE Quiz Thurgood Marshall | Ducksters
Supreme Court – FREE Coloring Page | ColoringBook.com
Try some of these projects and activities to liven up your lessons on the U.S. Supreme Court.
School Project – Supreme Court Model (www.schoolprojectcenter.in) | SS School Projects
Landmark Supreme Court Case FREE TOPIC LIST (Goes with project) | EconFinanceGuru
Activities – Supreme Court Activity | USCourts.gov
Let Students Be the Judge! Supreme Court Cases and Civics Education | GPB – Education Matters
Your kids will enjoy these that go alongside your lessons on the Supreme Court:
How to Draw United States Supreme Court | Art for All
Supreme Court Cases For Dummies: US History Review | Hip Hughes
What is the Supreme Court? | Information Station
Don’t miss our US Government Workbook from Daily Skill Building and the free resources below:
Learning about the government and its inner workings is an empowering lesson for kids. They can take these lessons and carry them for the rest of their days.
A light has shone on the Supreme Court in the last few years, between the passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and the swearing-in of the new Justice Amy Coney Barrett.
This was a historical moment that captured the entire country’s attention, as it should. Our constitutional system is sadly something many Americans aren’t interested in, when in fact, it is extremely important to our country.
Your children will surely benefit from these free resources for learning about the U.S. Supreme Court in your homeschool.
Jeannette is a wife, mother and homeschooling mom. She has been mightily, saved by grace and is grateful for God’s sovereignty throughout her life’s journey. She has a Bachelor in English Education and her MBA. Jeannette is bi-lingual and currently lives in the Tongan Islands of the South Pacific. She posts daily freebies for homeschoolers!
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