Instructions for Declaration of Independence Paper

1. Read the Introduction to the Declaration of Independence and mark the text while
you read.
2. Discuss with a partner or group why you high-lighted what you did.
3. With a partner, write in your notebook what Jefferson is essentially saying in the
introduction.
4. Read the first paragraph of the preamble and mark the text while you read.
5. Discuss with a partner why you high-lighted what you did.
6. Answer the following questions in your notebook:
 How are all men created and what are they born with?
 What are “unalienable rights” and which ones does Jefferson say you are
born with? What does each refer to?
 What is the fundamental job of the government?
 Where should the government get its power from?
 What right do the people have if the government can’t do its job?
7. Read the second paragraph of the preamble and mark the text while you read.
8. Discuss with a partner why you high-lighted what you did.
9. With a partner, write in your notebooks what Jefferson is essentially saying in the
second paragraph of the preamble.
10. Read the next paragraph and the list of indictments and mark the text while you
read.
11. Discuss with a partner why you high-lighted what you did.
12. With a partner, respond in your notebooks to what Jefferson is essentially saying
in the first paragraph of the indictment, and give an interpretation of each of the
indictments.
13. Answer the following questions in your notebooks:
 Can you think of a time when the king would not allow colonial
governments to pass laws?
 When had the king kept standing armies in the colonies?
 When had the king waged war against the colonies?
 When had the king burned down towns?
 What is the king unfit to be?
14. Read the conclusion and mark the text while you read.
15. Discuss with a partner why you high-lighted what you did.
16. Respond in your notebook what Jefferson is essentially saying in the last
paragraph.
Homework: Write a 1 to 1 ½ page paper answering the question: How did Jefferson
explain to the world why the colonies were breaking away from Britain in the Declaration
of Independence? Papers should include an introduction with background information
and a clearly stated thesis. The paper should include 2 body paragraphs that support the
argument stated in the thesis. The paper should include at least 5 quotes from the primary
source. The paper must have a conclusion. The paper should have a total of at least 4
paragraphs.