Theme

Laws and Crime

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An understanding of the Civics and Citizenship concepts is developed through a focus on Australia’s democracy and legal system. The teaching ideas in this resource assist students to gain knowledge and understanding of how Australia’s legal system aims to provide justice, through the rule of law.

An understanding of the Civics and Citizenship concepts is developed through a focus on Australia’s laws, the responsibilities and freedoms of citizens and participation in the democratic process. The teaching ideas in this resource assist students to gain knowledge and understanding of the types of law in Australia including criminal law, civil law, and the place of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander law.

An understanding of the Civics and Citizenship concepts is developed through a focus on how Australia’s legal system works to support a democratic and just society. The teaching ideas in this resource assist students to gain knowledge and understanding regarding the key principles of Australia’s justice system, including equity before the law, independent judiciary, right to appeal and the factors that can undermine the application of the principles of justice.

An understanding of the Civics and Citizenship concepts is developed through a focus on Australia’s global roles and responsibilities and the values and practices that enable a resilient democracy to be sustained. The teaching ideas in this resource assist students to gain knowledge and understanding regarding the safeguards that protect Australia’s democratic system and society

Learning Intentions

Resource Focus

Community safety and wellbeing is enhanced when individuals understand the law and take action to prevent crime.

This resource provides students in years 7-10 with the opportunity to explore how Australia’s democracy, and other democracies, may be undermined, and identify the safeguards that protect Australia’s democratic system. They explore the types of laws and how laws are made within the Westminster system and describe the rights and responsibilities of participants in the process.

Students Understand:

  • The principles of The Rule of Law
  • That laws are based on values, beliefs and society norms
  • The historical basis of our Westminster system
  • The categories of laws and crime in Australia
  • How to interpret crime statistics and the way the media reports crime
  • How statute laws are developed

Lesson Ideas

Further Student Enquiry

What is the Rule of Law?

Visit the Frances Burt Law Education Program website for school visits to courts and further education resources

Students develop their own question to investigate Making a Law. The Parliamentary Education Office provides some useful information for students.

Assessment

Formative:

  1. Students write their own definitions and examples of criminal and civil law
  2. Students explain why, as good citizens, people should report criminal crimes through Crime Stoppers
  3. Hold a class discussion about crimes in the news. Ask students to discuss the types of crimes that are prevalent in the media.
  4. Organise the students into pairs. Ask each pair to select an article that has been in the media about a crime and complete the Media article analysis resource sheet.

Summative:

Many of the activities in the lesson ideas can be used for summative assessment:

  1. Students present, in an appropriate format, their views on how our legal system both protects citizens and requires them to be active participants
  2. Students present, in an appropriate format, their understanding of the process of law making in Australia
  3. Students present, in an appropriate format, their understanding of how the Rule of Law seeks to provide justice for Australian citizens
  4. Students present, in an appropriate format, their understanding of how the Rule of law provides safeguards that protect Australia’s democratic process