EL Civics for ESL Students

Nancy Pelosi Lesson

U.S. History, Civics, and Government
Nancy Pelosi - First Female Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives

Speaker Pelosi

President Obama and Speaker Pelosi


1. The House of Representatives elects the Speaker of the House by a majority vote.

2. Nancy Pelosi was the first female Speaker of the House. She was called Madam Speaker.

3. Since 1987, Pelosi has represented California's 8th congressional district. The 8th District covers most of San Francisco.

4. Before she got married in 1963, her maiden name was name was D'Alesandro.

5. She ran for public office after her youngest child became a senior in high school.

  • Nancy Pelosi is the current Minority Leader in the U.S. House of Representatives. She is a Democrat from San Francisco, California.
  • Pelosi was the first female Speaker of the House. She held that office from January 4, 2007 to January 3, 2011.
  • She was also the first Roman Catholic, first Italian-American, and the first Californian to be Speaker of the House.
  • Congress is made up of two parts: The Senate is the higher house and the House of Representatives is the lower house.
  • The House of Representatives has 435 voting members. Members are elected for two years.
  • The reason some states have more Representatives than other states is because they have more people.
  • The main duty of the Speaker of the House is to make sure that the House passes legislation supported by the majority party.
  • The Speaker seldom votes or joins in House debates.
  • If both the President and Vice President can no longer serve, the Speaker of the House becomes the President.
  • Pelosi was born on March 26, 1940, in Baltimore, Maryland. Both her father and brother were mayors of Baltimore.
  • She attended an all-girls high school in Baltimore, and went on to graduate from Trinity College in Washington, D.C. in 1962.
  • While a student at Trinity, she met her future husband, Paul Pelosi. She and her husband have five grown children and many grandchildren.
  • George W. Bush was President when Pelosi first became Speaker of the House. She continued to serve as Speaker for the first two years of Barack Obama's presidency.
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