Lesson Idea

The Rule Of Law

Theme: Laws and Crime
Relates to WACC: ACHCK050, ACHCK063, ACHCK064, ACHCK077, ACHCK090, VCCCG029, VCCCL022, VCCCL023, VCCCL034

Tuning In

To introduce the concept of The Rule of Law, ask students to watch the video The Rule of Law and take notes about:

  • the meaning of the concept
  • its history
  • the key principles.

Students then use their notes and an app such as Creately to design a spider diagram titled The Rule of Law. Once completed, students pair and share their findings then discuss as a class whether they found any aspects of the video particularly interesting.

Lesson Idea 1: The Rule Of Law

In Australia, our legal system is based on the principle of The Rule of Law.  The Rule of Law is based on a set of principles that our legal system and government follow.

  • Put each principle on the board and in turn discuss why students think each one is important and how we ensure that it is provided.

Rule of Law principles:

  • Consistent, fair and impartial decisions about legal matters
  • Protection of individual’s rights, freedoms
  • Ways to settle disputes between parties according to the law
  • Laws that are knowable, followable and fit for purpose.

Assist students to identify that we have legal institutions such as courts, fair trials, lawyers to help us interpret the law, laws that are clearly understood, that people are deemed innocent until proven guilty and the judiciary are independent of government. The Rule of Law Education website provides further information about each principle and can be used for further student investigation.

Discuss with students why Australian citizens are more likely to take community action, such as contacting Crime Stoppers, if they know what our laws are and the protections for the individual that the rule of law provides.  Ask students to create a Crime Stoppers marketing poster targeted at secondary students that includes the Rule of Law principles. The most effective posters could be exhibited in the classroom or around the school.

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