Lesson Plan Menu
Democrady: Campaign Financing
  1. Have a class discussion revolving around the impact of money on the democratic process. By this time the students should be able to say a great deal about this. Probe students for solutions to the problem of interest group money in political campaigns.
  2. Have the entire class read the article, "Give pols free money, no rules," U.S. News & World Report, December 29, 1997/January 5, 1998, pp. 54-56; this article offers some alternatives to our present campaign finance laws. Have a whole class discussion about these alternatives.
  3. A group of four students could present a debate to the entire class; the debate topic would be: Resolved, that McCain-Feingold-Cochran should be approved by the United States Congress and signed by President Bush. (If you wish a format for this debate, please contact Maryann Wolfe at Oakland Technical High School, 879-3050). Several articles in the enclosed bibliography refer to McCain-Feingold-Cochran bill; these could be used as seed articles for this debate.
  4. The final in-class activity would be to have a whole-class discussion with the intended outcome being to create a fair, democratic process for funding elections in the United States.


Paper Assignment: Students would write a 3-5 page paper in which they discuss how representative democracy-- with a fair plan for financing political campaigns-- might produce equity in terms of legislative outcomes for all its constituents.


I expect to use this unit in the 2001-2002 school year, so I do not have any examples of student work at present.

Essential Question & Unit
Student Activities I
Student Activities II
Student Activities II
Concluding Assignment
Teacher Commentary


Urban Dreams
OUSD Curriculum Unit
Democracy and Campaign Financing in the United States

Subject: History
Grade Level: 12th
Lesson Plan Author:
Maryann Wolfe