Last Friday was the final day of activities for the Leicester Legal Eagles project. Students handed in their group work materials; each group having created and trialed in St Peter’s School a workshop for children in years 4 and 5. Our students had covered a variety of legal topics; animal rights, human rights, libel and slander, the duty of care and the age of criminal responsibility, and had adopted a variety of methods in working with the children to learn more about these important issues. These included role plays, quizzes, mini-presentations and the mock trial of Goldilocks. In reflecting on how these workshops might be developed in the future, most students felt that had underestimated the children’s capacity to deal with complexities of law; and that the tasks presented to the children could be made more challenging next year.
We were delighted also to welcome some 62 children from St Peter’s School on to campus; their visit being made possible through funding for the Legal Eagles project from the Higher Education Academy. The children began their visit by assessing our (slightly nervous) students as they each gave a short presentation entitled ‘What I have discovered about law as you see it’. Our student ambassadors then led the children on a short campus tour, before guiding them to the Rattray Lecture Theatre to take part in an interactive mini-lecture, using clicker technology. The visit ended with lunch and a highly entertaining story-telling session with professional storyteller, Alison Davies.
We will now start to look very closely at our students’ reflective blogs, to assess the impact of this project on their learning and development. Project co-ordinator, Dr Maribel Canto-Lopez, will be attending the Association of Law Teachers Annual Conference later this month, to present a poster on the formative stages of the project. We hope also to be attending the Society of Legal Scholars annual conference in September 2014, to present a full paper based on our findings.