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First 10 Amendments for kids

First 10 Amendments for kids
George Washington was the 1st American President who served in office from April 30, 1789 to March 4, 1797. One of the key events of his presidency was the adoption of the first 10 Amendments to the US Constitution. This article provides the history of the first 10 Amendments for kids including the reasons they were added to the Constitution, the objections and the opponents to the original document. A simple, short summary of the first 10 amendments for kids is also included in the information found in this article.

Definition of First 10 Amendments for kids
Definition: The First 10 Amendments to the United States Constitution are also known as the US Bill of Rights. An amendment is a change or addition to the US Constitution. The first 10 amendments (the Bill of Rights) were ratified in 1791. The US Constitution allows for additional amendments to be added to the Constitution. To date there have been a total of 27 amendments to the constitution, including the first ten.

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History of the First 10 Amendments for kids
The term "Bill of Rights" originated in England, where it refers to the 1689 Bill of Rights which asserted the supremacy of Parliament over the monarch and listed a number of fundamental rights and liberties. The American Revolutionary War of Independence began on April 18, 1775. On May 15, 1776 Congress advised all the colonies to form their own governments and to write their own State constitutions. The Declaration of Independence was adopted on July 4, 1776 announcing the separation of the colonies from Britain and making them into the United States of America. This heralded the birth of the new nation and a government needed to be established with a US Constitution.

History of the First 10 Amendments for kids: Objections to the Constitution
There were objections to the original draft of the Constitution. Citizens of the individual states were concerned about the amount of power that would be given to the new government, taking the control of affairs out of the hands of the people. Others objected because there was nothing in the US Constitution to prevent Congress from passing laws to destroy the freedom of the press. But the biggest objection to the US Constitution was because there was no Bill of Rights attached to it.

History of the First 10 Amendments for kids: Opponents of the Constitution
Major opponents to the original draft of the Constitution included Patrick Henry, Samuel Adams, James Madison, George Mason and John Hancock. The opponents to the new US Constitution felt unable to vote for its adoption until their objections had been addressed. It was suggested that the conventions for the individual states should consent to the adoption of the Constitution, but should also propose amendments which would resolve many of the objections.

History of the First 10 Amendments for kids: The "Father of the Constitution"
James Madison was called the "Father of the Constitution" as he played a significant role in ensuring the first ten amendments were added to the Constitution.  James Madison wrote the amendments in 1789, strongly influenced by the ideas of George Mason. The first 10 amendments (the Bill of Rights) came into effect in 1791. The addition of the first 10 amendments brought agreement to the Constitution and the Union of the 13 original states was complete.

The First 10 Amendments for kids: The Amendments
The first 10 amendments to the US Constitution limited the power of the federal government and guaranteed American citizens certain personal rights. The first 10 Amendments were all adopted in 1791 during the presidency of George Washington.

First Amendment

Second Amendment

Third Amendment

Fourth Amendment

Fifth Amendment

Sixth Amendment

Seventh Amendment

Eighth Amendment

Ninth Amendment

Tenth Amendment

Summary of the First 10 Amendments for kids
A summary of the first 10 amendments to the US Constitution adopted in 1791 is detailed below:

Summary of the First 10 Amendments for kids

First

1st Amendment

People have the right to petition the Government and the right of freedom of religion, freedom of speech, freedom of the press and freedom of assembly

Second

2nd Amendment

People have the right to keep a weapon and to use it to protect themselves

Third

3rd Amendment

Soldiers cannot take or live in a person's house without the permission of the owner

Fourth

4th Amendment

The government cannot arrest a person or search their property unless there is "probable cause" that a crime has been committed

Fifth

5th Amendment

The government must follow the due process of the law before punishing a person. American citizens have the right to Trial by Jury. A person cannot be put on trial twice for the same crime. A person on trial for a crime does not have to testify against themselves in court.

Sixth

6th Amendment

A person has the right to be told what they are charged with, have a fair and speedy trial by a jury, to have a lawyer during the trial and has the right to question witnesses against them and have the right to get their own witnesses to testify.

Seventh

7th Amendment

A person has the right to a jury trial for civil cases.

Eighth

8th Amendment

The government cannot demand excessive bail, excessive fines, or any cruel and unusual punishment

Ninth

9th Amendment

The Constitution does not include all of the rights of the people and the states

Tenth

10th Amendment

Any powers that the Constitution does not give to the US government belong to the states and  the people, excluding powers that the Constitution says the states cannot have

Summary of the First 10 Amendments for kids

First 10 Amendments for kids - President George Washington Video
The article on the First 10 Amendments for kids provides an overview of one of the major events of his presidential term in office. The following video will give you additional important facts and dates about the political events experienced by the 1st American President whose presidency spanned from April 30, 1789 to March 4, 1797.

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