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The Cornerstone Project is designed to promote greater understanding of America's founding principles.

This is accomplished through the development and distribution of books, videos, curricula, and associated educational materials.

Roots of Liberty is the first major undertaking of the Project.


About-imageThe Federalist Papers, written by James Madison, Alexander Hamilton and John Jay, were described by Thomas Jefferson as “the best commentary on the principles of government which was ever written,” and by distinguished historian Clinton Rossiter as “the most important work in political science that has ever been written.”

However, the Papers have largely been inaccessible because of their voluminous content and arcane language. These challenges are addressed in Roots of Liberty: Unlocking the Federalist Papers, a comprehensive curriculum including:

  • a student text featuring ten essays written by scholars unifying key topics and themes throughout the Papers (20 copies included with each classroom set)
  • an accompanying teacher’s discussion guide with multiple tools and activities
  • companion videos corresponding to lessons

Topics Include:

  • the doctrine of enumerated powers
  • separation of powers
  • federalism
  • the independent judiciary
  • how the U.S. Constitution enables public officials to make good decisions
  • political freedom
  • economic freedom
  • religious freedom
  • the Constitution as a defense against foreign aggression

    Contact Us with any questions

Teacher Reviews

  • “I like how the curriculum utilizes the Federalist Papers as a springboard to look at the original intent of our Constitution. I also like how the curriculum makes connections to historic cases throughout our Country's later history and offers current events projects helping students see how the issues at our founding are still issues today."”

    Home School Teacher,
    Leesburg, Virginia


  • “This is a very important course to all students, and it is exciting to see that studying the Federalist Papers has been put into a beautifully organized course with a visual component.

    I have homeschooled our children for the past fourteen years and been involved with teaching co op classes for many years, I have seen many courses that work well in the that setting and many that do not. I am very impressed by what I read and see in the Roots of Liberty course.”

    Laura Zishcke,
    Home School Teacher
    Leesburg, VA


  • “The Roots of Liberty reader is a flexible tool that I was able to incorporate into a government class comprised of students with varied reading abilities. The manner in which the Roots of Liberty was compiled allowed students to analyze and explore the documents in a manageable and meaningful way. Overall, my students felt empowered that they were able to discuss and deliberate sophisticated topics originally presented by the Founding Fathers. I recommend Roots of Liberty to any American Government teacher and for students of any ability level.”

    Pat Usher,
    AP American Government Teacher


  • “The materials are well-organized. My students found them thoughtful and insightful. All parts were very user friendly. The students really liked the questions that accompany the excerpts from the Federalist Papers. The questions for the essays stretched my students. They were made to think! I like how the essays are organized: the lettered paragraphs make for easy reference. The Discussion Guide was a hit with my students.”

    Mike Ortman,
    AP US History Teacher


  • “The Roots of Liberty challenges students to think and evaluate--a good stretch for many of our students. The Analyze the Source activity encapsulates the issue AND requires students to employ critical thinking skills.”

    Honors Government Teacher,
    Falls Church, Virginia


  • “My Senior Honors Government students loved these materials. We will use these materials again next semester. Working with primary sources is a challenge for my students, but using the Analyze the Source questions worked out well.”

    Michael Wilmoth,
    Honors American Government Teacher,
    Wellington High School,
    Wellington, Kansas


  • "The Roots of Liberty offers teachers and students new ways of looking at the Federalist Papers. The materials are both comprehensive and comprehensible. Connect to Current Issues is particularly useful.”

    Tom W. Glaser,
    AP American Government,
    Mater Academy Charter High School


  • “These materials encourage higher-order thinking skills and help students to develop their analytic writing ability.”

    Kristie Barbee,
    AP US History Teacher,
    Waltrip High School,
    Houston, Texas


  • “You should have been a fly on the wall yesterday, hearing the kids discuss the essay. Understanding the Federalist Papers enhances understanding of the Constitution. The essays are great in their references to multiple Federalist Papers. The materials are effective with students of varying abilities.”

    Cheryl Cook-Kallio
    AP American Government,
    Irvington High School,
    Fremont, California