The Judge and the Jury: Trial by Jury

Why is it so important to have a trial by jury in the American judicial system? This right is one of the hallmarks of American democracy, but it also comes with the responsibility of serving on a jury if called. Young legal scholars consider the dynamics using a WebQuest, video clips, and other classroom activities. 

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CCSS: Adaptable
Instructional Ideas
  • Have pupils interview friends or relatives about their jury service to inform a class discussion on why trial by jury is an important legal right
Classroom Considerations
  • Part two of a three-part series called How the Courts Work
  • Lesson plans assume individuals have a basic understanding of how courts work
  • Lesson plan uses a variety of activities that engage various learning preferences
  • Activities are adaptable to a variety of courses, including history, politics and government, and criminology
  • Resources are ready to use, including answer keys and outside resources
  • At least one link to a resource doesn't work in the lesson plan