The mock trial will serve as the culminating assessment for our Romeo and Juliet unit. Rather than give a pen and paper test, we are trying Friar Lawrence for involuntary manslaughter for the deaths of Romeo and Juliet. During our reading and viewing of the play, we have been considering who we might hold responsible for their deaths, so now it is time to put all of that evidence that we have collected together in one performance assessment. I am choosing to have a mock trial because I think it is an interesting and fun way to end the unit AND because it allows students to practice their listening and speaking skills.
At the beginning of class today, I will have a sample mock trial script on the white board. I chose this script because it is a simple case from a familiar story, and I just want them to get the flow of the court case as well as some ideas for drafting their talking points.
I will have several students take parts and we will read it together (CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.9-10.6). The purpose of this activity is to have students practice the type of speaking and listening that would occur in a courtroom and to see what each role in the mock trial looks like.
2) Prosecuting attorney and witnesses for the prosecution
All questions and answers should use information specifically stated in the text or inferred from statements made in the text (CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RL.9-10.1). I'm making sure that they do this part because I can assess whether or not they read for understanding and can support their statements with textual evidence.
3) Judge and Bailiff
At the end of class, students will make a list of their homework tasks to ensure that everyone in their group is prepared to put on their case/participate in the trial next class. I am having them do this as a way of staying organized and prepared for this activity.
I will spend some time going over the mock trial judging form on page 18 so that students know how they will be graded in the trial. In addition, I will be collecting all of notes that jurors are taking as they listen to the case. In fact, I will be collecting notes from each member of the team to demonstrate their preparation and participation in the trial.