Participants began with a 5 minute writing exercise where they wrote down everything they knew about courtroom trials and also the sources of this knowledge.
Some of the things they wrote about included court room spectators, defense attorneys, prosecutors, character witnesses, evidence, the witness stand, and juries. Sources included: To Kill A Mockingbird (book), How To Get Away With Murder (TV Show), Law & Order (TV) a grandmothers job, Court Systems and Practice high school course, The Stranger (book), and 12 Angry Men (film).
The remainder of the class was spent listening to a reading of the 1978 Court Transcripts from the Capital Murder trial of Charlie Brooks Jr. Copies were obtained from the Texas State Archives.
The reading was of the 22 pages of instructions from the judge to the jury.
Participants took notes focusing on:
1. Who are the main characters in the courtroom?
2. What are the major proesses presented?
3. How do you think the jury feels after hearing these instructions?
Group share out.
Journal Reflection Questions
1) Whose voice or voices did I hear today?
2) How has what I have learned today shaped my perspective?
3) What is one way I could share my perspective?