Teach your students the history of the American government with an reading comprehension passage and questions about the Articles of Confederation.
Comprehending the Articles of Confederation for Kids
What were the Articles of Confederation? That part is simple enough. The Articles of Confederation was the first document to include a national government. Many consider it, in effect, a prototype for the Constitution. For us teachers, it’s a no-brainer and a relatively simple concept. However, put that idea in front of a fifth grader, and they will struggle. Big time…
To ease the confusion, we’ve put together a comprehensive reading comprehension worksheet pack to teach your students more about the Articles of Confederation, its creators, and its strengths and weaknesses.
Weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation
Before you start teaching about the Articles, here’s a quick rundown of the main ideas. The Articles of Confederation were ineffective for several reasons.
- They did not give the federal government sufficient power to regulate commerce or levy taxes. This led to economic problems and made it difficult for the government to fund its operations.
- The Articles gave far too much power to the states, which caused problems with decision-making and policy implementation.
- The lack of a strong executive branch also meant no one person or group with the power to enforce laws and make government decisions.
These and other issues ultimately led to the drafting of the current U.S. Constitution, which addressed many of the weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation.
This reading comprehension worksheet pack includes
- Articles of Confederation Reading Passage
- Articles of Confederation Comprehension Worksheet
- Article Cut and Paste Worksheet
- Answer Key
Scaffolding + Extension Tips
A team of dedicated, experienced educators created this resource to support your American government and history lessons.
🆘 Support Struggling Students
- Break the article into three parts and focus on one section a day.
- Complete the reading together as a group and then have students work together to complete the other activities.
➕ Challenge Fast Finishers
- Students can reflect on 1-2 Articles and come up with a better way to write them, stating reasons why the particular articles would not be beneficial to the states.
- Students can compare and contrast the Articles of Confederation with the U.S. Constitution.
Easily Prepare This Resource for Your Students
Use the dropdown icon on the Download button to download the Google Slides or PDF version of this resource.
This resource was created by Beth Hindi, a teacher in Texas and Teach Starter Collaborator.