School Improvement in Maryland

Standard 1.0 Political Science

Topic A. The Foundations and Function of Government

Indicator 2. Analyze the impact of historic documents and practices that became the foundations of the American political system during the early national period

Objective e. Describe the major debates and compromises that occurred during the Constitutional Convention and interpret their effects on the ratification process

Brief Constructed Response (BCR) Item

Assuming the perspective of a particular American resident in 1787 (for example, a shipbuilder in Massachusetts, a plantation owner in South Carolina, or a slave in Virginia), have students write letters to Framers from their state either opposing or in support of one major compromise from the constitutional convention.

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_social_studies_8_051.xml

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Selected Response Item

2010 NAEP U.S. History Item:

The following question refers to the passage below.

At the 1787 Constitutional Convention, northern and southern delegates debated whether or not slaves would be counted as part of a state’s population. Disagreement over this question led to bitter tensions among delegates.

The disagreement referred to in the passage was important because the official size of a state’s population affected the

  1. number of seats the state had in the House of Representatives
  2. number of seats the state had in the Senate
  3. amount of land the state would be allowed to acquire
  4. size of the state’s militia
/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_social_studies_8_052.xml

Correct Answer:
A

Selected Response Item

2010 NAEP U.S. History Item:

The following question refers to the passage below.

At the 1787 Constitutional Convention, northern and southern delegates debated whether or not slaves would be counted as part of a state’s population. Disagreement over this question led to bitter tensions among delegates.

To resolve the question referred to in the passage, delegates agreed to

  1. include all male slaves in population totals
  2. include no slaves in population totals
  3. count each slave as three-fifths of a person in population totals
  4. count slaves in the southern states but not in the northern states
/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_social_studies_8_053.xml

Correct Answer:
C

Extended Constructed Response (ECR) Item

2006 NAEP Item:

At the Constitutional Convention in 1787, the large states and the small states disagreed with each other about how the new government should be structured.

Identify the most important issue that large and small states disagreed about.

Explain how this issue was resolved by the Connecticut (Great) Compromise.

/toolkit/vsc/assessment_items/msa_social_studies_8_054.xml

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Resources for Objective 1.A.2.e:
Clarifications | Lesson Seeds | SAMPLE ASSESSMENTS | Resource Links