The First 100 Days

Lesson Duration

From iCivics

After a 2-page reading, students will complete 2 pages of guided activities designed to generate discussion. Students will:

  • explain the origin of the concept of the president’s first 100 days
  • identify and explain what may impact the success of the president’s first 100 days
  • analyze presidential quotations to determine attitude towards the expectations of the first 100 days
  • define the term “mandate” as it applies to presidential terms

Some optional activity ideas are included. In these students:

  • look at “presidential election electoral/ popular vote outcomes alongside voter turnout figures and determine if that president could rightfully, in their opinion, assume a mandate”
  •  read “the full transcript of Kennedy’s 1961 Inauguration Address and discuss why foreign policy-based agendas might take longer to achieve than more domestically focused ones”
  • create a rubric for grading a new president on his or her First 100 Days and then research the First 100 Days of a president using the rubric to determine the president’s degree of success

select two media outlets with differing political persuasions or tendencies, research the First 100 Days of a recent president (2000-today) on both outlets, and compare coverage and judgement

Go to: The First 100 Days


iCivics is a program that teaches core civics content through free lesson plans, online games, and interactive modules. Endorsed by Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor.