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Task Sheet and Schedule:  Preparing for the Mock Trial

 WEDNESDAY, 3/17

  • Overview of courtroom procedure
  • Students meet in respective groups:
    • Lead attorneys:
      • Meet and determine who will do which part of the trial;
      • then attorneys 1&2/A&B will move to work with attorneys 5-7/E-G
      • and attorneys 3&4/C&D will move to work with attorneys 8-10/H-J
    • Attorneys 5-7/E-G:
      • Using the “Direct Questioning” worksheet, start determining the argument your side is going to establish in court (one witness at a time).
    • Attorneys 8-10/-J:
      • Using the “Cross-Examination” worksheet, start anticipating your opposition’s argument and how you will work to destroy it (one witness, one point at a time).
    • Witnesses:
      • Pair up and start quizzing each other on your roles.  To do this, I recommend that you use the information directly in the packet right now.  Have one person ask the questions in the packet, the other person should answer them.  Try to memorize the information (but you don’t need to say it word-for-word).
    • Practice Witnesses:
      • Follow directions for “Witnesses” above.  However, you will be preparing to be the opposition’s witnesses.  Divide up the roles as you like.
    • Bailiff:
      • See me first.  Then join one of the attorney groups or the practice witness group.

Homework:  Attorneys must work more on preparing arguments.  Witnesses and practice witnesses must finish memorizing roles and figuring out how their character might answer a question that isn’t asked in the packet.

 

THURSDAY, 3/18

  • Students meet in respective groups:
    • Lead Attorneys 1&2/A&B and Attorneys 5-7/E-G:
      • Using the “Direct Questioning” worksheet, continue determining the argument your side is going to establish in court (one witness at a time).  Today, you may want to start calling on your witnesses to let them know the questions you will be asking.
    • Lead Attorneys 3&4/C&D and Attorneys 8-10/-J:
      • Using the “Cross-Examination” worksheet, start anticipating your opposition’s argument and how you will work to destroy it (one witness, one point at a time).  Today, you may want to start calling on the practice witnesses to try out some of the questions you think the opposition will ask and then your own cross-examination questions.
    • Witnesses:
      • Pair up and continue quizzing each other on your roles.  When called over to work with the attorneys, write down the questions they plan on asking you and work to develop your response.
    • Practice Witnesses:
      • Pair up and continue quizzing each other on your roles.  When called over to work with the attorneys, do your best to stay true to your character(s) and, where necessary, be difficult/smart about answering their questions so they can come up with better questions to ask.
    • Bailiff:
      • Work with the group you were working with yesterday.

 

Homework:  Attorneys must work more on preparing arguments.  Witnesses and practice witnesses must finish memorizing roles, practice answering questions tried on them during class today, and figuring out how their character might answer a question that isn’t asked in the packet.

 

 

FRIDAY, 3/19—Last day to prepare case before court practice on Monday.

  • Students meet in respective groups:
    • Lead Attorneys A&D/1&4:
      • Today is your day to work on writing your opening and closing argument.  Use the handout Ms. Spachman gave you as a model of what these kinds of arguments should sound like.
    • Lead Attorney 2/B and Attorneys 5-7/E-G:
      • Using the “Direct Questioning” worksheet, continue determining the argument your side is going to establish in court (one witness at a time).  Today, you MUST start calling on your witnesses to let them know the questions you will be asking.
    • Lead Attorney 3/C and Attorneys 8-10/-J:
      • Using the “Cross-Examination” worksheet, start anticipating your opposition’s argument and how you will work to destroy it (one witness, one point at a time).  Today, you MUST start calling on the practice witnesses to try out some of the questions you think the opposition will ask and then your own cross-examination questions.
    • Witnesses:
      • Same work as Thursday.  If you’re solid on your role, you may help the attorneys develop their arguments.
    • Practice Witnesses:
      • Same work as Thursday.  If you’re solid on your role, you may help the attorneys develop their arguments.
    • Bailiff:
      • Work with the group you were working with yesterday.

 

Homework:  All students should make final preparations on the case.  Lead attorneys must start practicing all the “out-loud” stuff (e.g., If you’re making an opening argument, start practicing saying it aloud.)  On Monday, we will start practicing the trial and work through the courtroom procedure.