Court visit

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Session 3: Court Visit

Today’s session was great fun! I took the students to observe a regular civil motion court. At first, I was very concerned that the students would be bored. It was one of those days when the entire court session seemed to be consisted of consent or unopposed motions, which meant that the students did not get to hear oral arguments. However, they still enjoyed it.  I’ve forgotten that the first there is a lot to take in for a person attending a real live court hearing for the first time.  The students noted with great interest all the formalities and etiquette that I’ve now taken for granted. They took note of all the terms they didn’t understand, such as “draft order” and “certificate of pending litigation”, which I was able to explain to them afterwards. Our lunch time was maximized in learning. Not only did we discuss what we observed at the motion, we also used that time to analyze one case decision. I showed them the IRAC method, so that they can approach how to read cases systematically. We then went to the beautiful Court House library down the street.  I think the students really enjoyed the day. Indeed, we’re are planning to observe a criminal hearing together soon!

I am really glad I got the chance to teach such an enthusiastic and appreciative group of students. I must admit, when I planned to do this program early this spring, I was a bit hesitant. However, after our third session, I can say that I totally do not regret it. And I’d like to thank my first student, Ruchi Punjabi, who inspired me to offer this program. I enjoyed teaching her about the law so much, that I decided to teach more students this year. Hopefully, I’ll be able to continue the program next year.