People of the Courts

Contributor: Brian Anthony. Lesson ID: 11299

"Order in the court!" "OK, I'll have a ham sandwich!" Courtroom scenes are more serious than that, and require several people to make them effective. Learn about each job and what it takes to succeed!

categories

United States

subject
Government
learning style
Visual
personality style
Otter, Golden Retriever
Grade Level
Middle School (6-8), High School (9-12)
Lesson Type
Dig Deeper

Lesson Plan - Get It!

Audio:

"Order in the court!"

"I object, Your Honor!"

"This court is in recess …"

You might recognize some of these dramatic statements from your favorite television crime show. Are those really the kinds of things people say in courts?

Reflect on the following questions and discuss with a parent or teacher:

  • What are the different roles required to make a court work?
  • What responsibilities does each of those roles fulfill?
  • What would be the coolest court-related job to have? What makes you think so?

Every work situation requires a team of one kind or another to make sure the job is getting done.

The people who work in our court system have a big responsibility: to make sure the law is applied evenly and fairly to everyone who uses our courts.

Who are these people? What are their responsibilities? How are they trained to do what they do? Let's find out more. Using your own research, locate and gather as much information as you can about:

  • judges.
  • lawyers.
  • law clerks.
  • other court-related positions you find.

You can use the resources provided below, or other resources you locate using your own research:

Reflect and fill in this People of the Courts Chart.

Then, discuss your findings with a parent or teacher:

  • How does each of these people contribute to the effectiveness of the court system?
  • How does each support or check the other?
  • If you had to choose one of these as a career path, which one would you choose? Why?

Imagine if the court system were only made up of judges — the decisions would be mostly up to the whims and opinions of the individual judge. If there were no law clerks, the lawyers or the judges would have to spend impossible hours digging through volume upon volume of case law.

Let's play with some of the information you uncovered about each role in this section and find out a little more in the Got It? section.

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