In this lesson, students will stage a mock trial to resolve a hypothetical dispute. They will develop an understanding of the trial process, the roles of those in the courtroom and their importance to the administration of justice, and the significance of their constitutional protections.
Your students will analyze the impact of historic cases and the role of civic participation in these cases. Students will also demonstrate their understanding of the basic elements of a trial through a mock trial proceeding.
Civil Discourse and Difficult Decisions is a national initiative of the federal courts that brings high school and college students into federal courthouses for legal proceedings that stem from situations in which law-abiding young people can find themselves. These court hearings (not mock trials) are realistic simulations that showcase jury deliberations in which all students and learning styles participate, using civil discourse skills. This activity includes: Reality Check Quiz and Discussion Starter; Civil Discourse Skill Building; Courtroom Simulation; and Reality Check Discussion.
In this lesson, students will discuss the difference between fact and opinion. They will role play a mock trial, decide the case, and justify their decision. Students will discuss why facts are more reliable than opinions, and understand why courts rely more upon facts than opinions.