Great Way for Students to Learn Basics about the US Supreme Court

Submitted 8 years ago
My Rating

My Take

I think that this lesson is great as a supplement during a unit on the US government and/or the Constitution. It is not comprehensive enough to be a stand-alone lesson on the Supreme Court but is good as entry into thinking about the different arguments the Supreme Court has to weigh. It's good also for my students who are struggling readers or need multiple opportunities with the similar content because it's audio-based (though the text is also supplied so students who are limited English could read and listen at the same time).

It's a bit slow as a game, and my students think of it as an enriched assignment rather than a game. Even though you can get points for getting comprehension questions correct, the points weren't much of an incentive for my students. I use many of the iCivics games (on the iCivics website and through Everfi's Commons), and this isn't as engaging as some of the other games. Students complete the assignment, but rarely choose to replay it.

How I Use It

I use this game as a supplemental resource when teaching about the Supreme Court and the Bill of Rights. My students generally don't know anything about the Supreme Court and assume that the first amendment means you can say anything you want at any time. This game gives them the opportunity to think a bit deeper about freedom of speech, dress codes, and the Supreme Court. Dress code is always a hot issue for my students and so they appreciate the opportunity to think about the laws regulating it. All of my students completed the activity (which I can tell through the teacher dashboard), even though it was a homework assignment.

Students do need to use a computer with good wifi (or a tablet with a browser that can play flash-based movies). This was a problem for some of my students.