Lesson Purpose

This lesson draws a connection between George Washington’s establishment of the two-term precedent for the presidency and Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s breaking of that precedent nearly 150 years later. In this lesson, students will analyze multiple primary and secondary sources, both collaboratively and independently. Discussion and debate is a large focus of this lesson. Students will make interdisciplinary connections between history and government/civics. This resource was created by 2013-2014 Life Guard Teacher Fellow Hannah Markwardt. 



  • Students will evaluate the practice of term limits for the American presidency
  • Students will compare and contrast Constitutional provisions for the presidency with debates during the Constitutional Convention and real life applications to the presidency
  • Students will use context clues to determine the meaning of academic vocabulary in a primary source
  • Students will analyze the content and message of a political cartoon
  • Students will debate the merits of presidential term limits

Related Standards

  • Reading and Writing Literacy in History/Social Studies
  • Integrate and Evaluate Content in Diverse Formats.
  • Writing Standards
  • Speaking and Listening
  • Principles of Democracy
  • Power, Authority, and Governance
  • Time, Continuity, and Change


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