Teaching Students About Ammon Bundy


Ammon Bundy is an American activist and leader of the Bundy family, a group well-known for their anti-government stance. As a controversial figure, it is essential for students to understand his background, beliefs, and actions to form an educated opinion about him and the wider issues he brings to light. This article will guide educators on how to teach students about Ammon Bundy.


Ammon Bundy was born on September 1st, 1975, in Nevada. He is the son of Cliven Bundy, a rancher who gained national attention in 2014 due to a standoff with federal agents over grazing rights. Ammon has inherited his father’s anti-government sentiments and has become an outspoken advocate for property rights.

Bundy’s most notable actions occurred in early 2016 when he led an armed occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon. The occupation lasted for 41 days and resulted in one death and the arrest of several of Bundy’s followers. The standoff with authorities brought attention to the cause of transferring public lands back to local control.

Teaching Approach

1. Contextualize: Begin by giving students context about the history of public land use, management, and disputes in the United States. Discuss the historical tensions between private interests and federal intervention in land management.

2. Present Bundy’s Perspective: Explain Ammon Bundy’s point of view by providing information about his family background, beliefs, and involvement in various standoffs with federal authorities. Discuss his concerns about government overreach and property rights.

3. Contrasting Viewpoints: Offer various opinions surrounding Ammon Bundy’s actions, such as arguments against his methods or questioning the motives behind his protests. Encourage students to research different perspectives to develop a comprehensive understanding.

4. Analyze Implications: Explore the social, political, and legal consequences of Bundy’s actions, including the precedent they may set for future land disputes and the impact on environmental conservation.

5. Encourage Debate: After presenting relevant information and different viewpoints, open up a discussion among students. Ask them to consider the pros and cons of Ammon Bundy’s actions, as well as alternative approaches to solving land disputes.

6. Connect to Broader Issues: Finally, relate the Ammon Bundy case study to broader issues of federalism, property rights, and environmental conservation in American history. Encourage students to compare this case with other disputes over land management and government intervention.


Teaching students about Ammon Bundy requires providing a balanced view of his background, beliefs, and actions. By offering various perspectives and encouraging critical thinking, educators can help students develop an informed opinion about this controversial figure in American history. Through discussion and debate on this subject, students can better understand complex issues at the intersection of property rights, government regulation, and environmental conservation, which remain relevant today.

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