Constitutional Sound Bites: Information for Educators


Many states are either updating or passing new laws regarding civics education for their K-12 students.  For example, Illinois’ new civics graduation requirement goes into effect for incoming 2016-17 high school freshman and South Carolina’s new law specifically requires study of America’s Founding Principles and Documents.  The renewed interest in formally educating American students on their shared heritage calls for updated presentations of crucial citizenship information in a way that speaks to 21st century students.

These students live in a Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat world of blogposts and tweets.  Translating 18th Century English into a 21st Century communications style, Constitutional Sound Bites and its Spanish companion, Cápsulas Informativas Constitucionales convey a solid understanding of America’s Founding Principles and Documents in a way that meets the modern need.

Constitutional Sound Bites provides, in an FAQ format, not dry names, dates and places or “how a bill becomes a law”, but the ideas that motivated the creation of the Declaration of Independence, Constitution and Bill of Rights and the keys to understanding the documents that are our common heritage.

The book is suitable as a text book, outside reading or for a teacher wishing to enhance a classroom presentation.  The emphasis is that the principles involved in America’s Founding are not Republican, Democrat, liberal or conservative, but American.

Both the English and Spanish are Available on Amazon in hard copy and Kindle eBook editions.

More on the English language version can be found at this link, and the Spanish at this link.  More on author and former state prosecutor David J. Shestokas is here, and Spanish language collaborator Dr. Berta Arias is here.

For inquiries regarding bulk sales or Mr. Shestokas’ availability to speak to a class or at an assembly, please use the contact form at this link.

What Others Have Said about

Constitutional Sound Bites and Cápsulas Informativas Constitucionales

Enriching Education: The Right to Free Speech

by Bekah

Did you know that before the United States Constitution no right for freedom of the press existed – ever? Everyone needs to understand the combination of people, thought, action, and setting that created this great nation.

The men we know as the Founding Fathers constructed documents with impact that spanned the globe and forever changed human rights for self-governance. These documents are The Declaration of Independence, The U.S. Constitution and The Bill of Rights. (Read more here)


By Nancy Thorner

Quick, pay attention – think you know all you should about America’s founding? Well, here’s some “Constitutional Sound Bites” from a powerful new book authored by David Shestokas:

 “Declaration of Independence – Did you know?

  • Thomas Jefferson became a lawyer at 24 years old and wrote the “Declaration” at age 33.
  • The impact of the “Declaration of Independence” upon the world was dramatic.  When written in 1776 it was the first such document in history to declare a people free and self-governing.
  • Before the “Declaration of Independence”, a government was typically an empire controlled by a royal family.
  • The Declaration of Independence issued a list of grievances against King.
  • Jefferson patterned the Declaration like a complaint in a court case.  There is a statement of law, a list of violations of law and the proper remedy for those violations

Preamble to Constitution –  Words and phrases as understood by our Founding Fathers –  Did you know?  (Read more here)

10 Things You Should Know about David Shestokas and ‘Cápsulas Informativas Constitucionales’

George Washington Capsulas Coverby Mary Ramirez

The opportunity to bring people together around our founding principles could be made so much bigger.  Enter “Cápsulas Informativas Constitucionales,” a Spanish translation of our founding documents and the historical context and debate around them.
This one-of-a-kind effort brings the essence of what makes the United States different to the hands of millions of Americans who can more easily learn in Spanish. As a recent interview with put it, “For the first time, America’s Spanish-speaking community, which often finds itself the subject of Constitutional discussion, has the opportunity to join these discussions in their own language.”  (Read more here)

The U.S. Constitution explained in Spanish

by Reflejos

David Shestokas is the author of “Cápsulas Informativas Constitucionales,” the first book in Spanish devoted to America’s Founding Documents and Principles. It renews the tradition begun by the country’s Founders in September 1787, when one third of the copies of the proposed Constitution were printed in German. The Founders knew that people, even those who are multilingual, best understand crucial concepts in the language they are most familiar with.  (Read more here)

 29_special_session_t810Constitutional Soundbites: A shortened version of the founding document made for millennials

On this Constitution Day, millennials can learn about the founding document and the history leading to its ratification without looking at an endless number of pages. Thanks to Constitutional Soundbites, a shortened consolidated, book—developed by constitutional lawyer David Shestokas—children, teenagers, and young adults can learn about the founding and structure of today’s American government through an easy-to-read, question-and-answer format.  (Read more here)

Nancy Burns gives a nice summary of Constitutional Sound Bites:

  1. Thoughts on the Declaration of Independence (DoI)
  2. Why should we study it?
  3. What were the risks if the framers signed this document?
  4. What impact  did the ‘DoI’ have upon the world?
  5. The Preamble, the Constitution’s mission statement
  6. ….all those patriotic words, what do they mean?
  7. Shestokas tells us in simple words  (Read more here)

Click on the pic below to Listen to the interview with Denise Simon about the origins of Constitutional Sound Bites



For Further Reading



  1. […] These books can be invaluable for educators, for more see  Constitutional Sound Bites:  Information for Educators […]

  2. […] These books can be invaluable for educators, for more see  Constitutional Sound Bites:  Information for Educators […]

  3. […] These books can be invaluable for educators, for more see  Constitutional Sound Bites:  Information for Educators […]