Lessons

If you have any questions, contact judicialoutreach@jud.ca.gov

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Grade levels listed with each lesson are recommendations only. Once a match is made, you will have the opportunity to coordinate with the judge ahead of the visit to best prepare the lesson. If a teacher wishes to deliver the lesson on their own, they may do so using the Lesson Plan notes for guidance.

Visits include time for students to get to know the judge, ask questions about their role, path to the bench, types of cases they hear, etc. Judges will not provide lectures on responsible citizenry, community service, or other topics unrelated to the operations of the judicial branch.

If you have any questions, judicialoutreach@jud.ca.gov

Constitution Day PowerPoint 2022.pptx

The Constitution Grades: 3-12

Request a judge visit your classroom where they'll meet with your students and talk about the U.S. Constitution, the supreme law of the land. Depending on class needs, this lesson typically includes time for students to ask questions about law, careers in law, and the role of a judge. Older students may also engage in dialogue about current events and the law.

"No Animals Allowed" Grades: K-5

Translation: Spanish, Mandarin

Early learners receive an introduction to the 3 branches of government. Through a set of scenarios, the class is challenged to determine the difference between a rule and a law.

No Animals Allowed is the most requested lesson for young learners.

"No Vehicles Allowed" Grades: 6-12

Translation: Spanish, Mandarin

This lesson offers students a close look at the purpose and function of law, and the importance of considering the intent of lawmakers. Through a set of scenarios, students will analyze a sample law and its application.

Reenactment: Salem Witch Trials Grades: 5-8

Translation: Spanish

Students role-play through a provided script and learn about the importance of our jury system, the function of the judicial branch as an equal in our 3 branches of government, and citizens' protections under the Bill of Rights.

  • Students will compare and contrast this historic court case with and without the Bill of Rights.

  • Focus on Amendments 6 and 7.

Voter Rights Grades: 3-5 & 6-12

Nowhere in the original text of the U.S. Constitution or Bill of Rights does it say that U.S. Citizens have the right to vote.
It was only through a series of constitutional amendments that voting rights and protections were added.

  • Focus on Amendments 14, 15, and 19.

Riley vs. California Grades 9-12
(adaptable for lower grades)

Translation: Spanish

Riley v. California is a landmark United States Supreme Court case in which the Court unanimously held that searching the digital contents of a cell phone without a warrant during an arrest is unconstitutional.

Students will learn how arguments were framed for both sides, and how the case worked its way all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Materials are provided for teachers to discuss the case with students before and after the visit.

"¡Sí Se Puede!" Grades 5-12

(Offered in Mar/Apr). Cesar Chavez Day (March 31) and Dolores Huerta Day (April 8) give reason for classrooms to learn about two of California's most recognized civil rights leaders.

From the fields to the union hall to the courtroom, a visit by a judge with this lesson will help your students understand how the courts settled just one of the many conflicts brought on through the farmworker movement.

A library of materials is available to help teachers prepare students for the visit.

Source: Los Angeles Latino Judicial Officers Association

New! Hispanic Heritage Month

Sleepy Lagoon Trials 2022.pptx

Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month with a lesson about the largest mass trial in California's history where 22 young men and women were arrested and charged with a crime all because of the way they dressed.

Source: Los Angeles Latino Judicial Officers Association