The Supreme Court of the United States is the highest court in the land, and the only court specifically created by the Constitution. It consists of nine justices, appointed for life by the President, who weigh in the meaning of laws and whether or not they violate the Constitution.
The great thing about Ben's Guide is that it is actually four separate grade-appropriate guides for K-12 students . This link will take you to the Supreme Court section for high-school students. To reach the other grade levels, select from the colored flag icons in the top right-hand corner. You'll find the Supreme Court pages (on all grade levels except K-2) by drilling down through Branches of Government to Judicial Branch.
These twelve Supreme Court decisions are the ones most frequently referenced in popular media. They include Plessy v. Ferguson (the case that asserted separate railroad accommodations for blacks did not violate the Fourteenth Amendment), Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka ( which struck down "separate but equal" racial segregation in public schools) and Roe v. Wade (the case that legalized abortion.) Each decision is summarized with a single paragraph, and is linked to a longer encyclopedia article.
The Oyez project takes its name from the phrase (pronouced "o-yay", "o-yez" or "o-yes") used to call the courtroom to order, and is my pick-of-day site. Start with the amazing, virtual tour you'll feel as if you are standing at the lectern arguing a case. Other highlights include Oyez Baseball, an interactive quiz that compares baseball players to Supreme Court Justices (I'm not making this up), and the databases of justice bios and court cases. And last, but not least, you can hear the Marshall of the Supreme Court announce the arrival of the justices with the audio clip on the FAQ page of the About Oyez section.
The official U.S. Supreme Court site has oodles of educational material (downloadable in Adobe Acrobat PDF) in the About the Supreme Court section. Skip the Brief Overview (which only lists hours and other administrative details) and jump into The Court as an Institution, The Court and Its Traditions, The Court and Its Procedures and The Court Building. Biographies of the current justices, and a listing of all past justices, are also found here. A fabulous photo gallery and info for D.C. visitors wanting to hear oral arguments await you in Visiting the Court.
A mix of news, features, quizzes and database make this WashingtonPost.com Supreme Court site outstanding! Visit to learn about recent decisions, peruse photo essays, and read About the Supreme Court (great info for school reports.) Don't overlook the three quizzes one interactive, and the others printable. "The first chief justice of the United States took the oath of office on October 19, 1789. Who was he?"