The Magna Carta: Cornerstone of the Constitution (Documenting U.S. History)

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9781432967567: The Magna Carta: Cornerstone of the Constitution (Documenting U.S. History)

Learn about the Magna Carta, an English charter that had great influence on the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Find out about those who were involved in its creation and why studying this primary source is so important.

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About the Author:

Roberta Baxter writes about science and history for students of all ages. She studied chemistry in college, but also enjoys learning about historical events and people. Her books include The Reactions of Metals, The Home Front in the North and The Home Front in the South. She lives in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

From School Library Journal:

Gr 4-6-In the first book, each of the 10 amendments is quoted and explained. Sidebars expand on some; for example, the Sixth Amendment is accompanied by a brief look at the Miranda Statement. It's a good overview of one of our founding documents and will prepare readers for single titles such as those in "The Bill of Rights" series (ABDO, 2008). Taking the Common Core standard regarding "the relationship between a primary and secondary source" to heart, Magna Carta begins by defining primary and secondary sources and identifying the document as an important primary source. Baxter explains that the ideas expressed in the Magna Carta influenced the authors of the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution. A later section outlines some specific ways in which the liberties granted in it are incorporated into U.S. law. The books cited in the "Find Out More" section offer information on medieval life and the American Revolution, but not the Magna Carta itself. Despite a few minor flaws, this title may be of interest where the curriculum allows for a more thorough study of the history of U.S. founding documents. Most of Sonneborn's material is standard fare: an outline of the causes of the Revolutionary War, the initial failure of the Articles of Confederation, and the ultimately successful Constitutional Convention. Each of the seven articles is discussed, as is the Bill of Rights and later amendments. An explanation of primary and secondary sources includes a useful description of when and why a historian might use each type. In all of the books, maps, photographs, and reproductions of original documents add visual appeal.-Rebecca Donnelly, Rio Rancho Public Library, NMα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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