Choose one of the following activities to demonstrate what you learned about the case of Marbury v. Madison.  If you can include a vocabulary term that you learned with this case, that’s even better!

The Post

Assume you are on a social networking site and you are in a group called “The Supreme Court Rules!”  Read the following posts and then make one of your own to settle the question.

  • Post #1:  “So, I’m reading about the Supreme Court case of Marbury v. Madison. It’s a bit technical. I’m trying to figure out the main point. Any help out there?”

  • Post #2:  I studied that one. I think the main point that some dude didn’t get his government job because the new president didn’t like his friends. Dude sued the government and lost.  Right?

  • Post #3:  No. No. Wasn’t the main idea that the Supreme Court said it did not have power to issue that writ of mandamus thing? (requiring the government to deliver the job papers to the dude?)

  • Post #4:  The Court said it didn’t like the law Congress had passed that included the writ thing. 

Now it is your turn. The people who posted above were not totally wrong, but they did not get the main point of the decision. Set the record straight and write your post.

  • Your post: The BIG idea - and the reason my teacher says we study this case - is…

The Cartoon

Think of the guys in the drawing below as the three branches of government. Using what you know about the Supreme Court’s decision in the case of Marbury v. Madison, give each guy a name. The name should tell which branch of government they represent. 

Before Marbury v. Madison (before 1803)


After Marbury v. Madison (decided in 1803)


Explain what happened between the two cartoons. What is the big idea behind this case? Why is this case important?