In several exercises, students are asked to explore aspects of the theme by taking on roles or preparing a case for a particular point of view (see, for example, Focus question 4, Activity 1). Such classroom activities can run the risk of encouraging students to become committed to the role they undertake and so narrow their focus rather than expand it. An effective strategy for overcoming this problem is to have students prepare the set of arguments for a point of view, but then be responsible for opposing that viewpoint in the actual debate that ensues.
Teachers keen to provide supplementary literary extracts could use William Golding's Lord of the Flies (book or film). The key scene in chapter 2 of the book, from 'By the time Ralph ...' to 'wiped them on his shirt', provides a good basis for a discussion of what happens to that society of young people when laws break down. Mark Twain's Huckleberry Finn, chapter 18, has a section on the nature of 'feuds' which could also provoke lively discussion.
Teachers could ask students to take minutes of the meeting in Focus question 4, Activity 2, as a basis for discussing the nature of decision making. In some of the activities presented within this unit students are asked to consider moral issues and controversial ones. Issues likely to be very contentious on religious, cultural or moral grounds (such as abortion or euthanasia) have been avoided. Teachers are best able to determine the particular examples that are appropriate for discussion within their own classes.
Teachers will be conscious of sensitive cultural issues likely to arise in student discussion of the proper basis of Australian law. For example, some students may want to stress the religious basis of law, while others would give it lower priority.
In the actual trial, after hearing all the evidence the jury decided beyond reasonable doubt that 'Dominic' had broken into the house, but they were not convinced that he had taken the jewels. Dominic was therefore found guilty of burglary, but not guilty of theft of the jewels. The prosecution then revealed that Dominic had prior convictions for robbery and theft. The judge then sentenced Dominic to twelve months' imprisonment.
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