"Laws and the Courts - a Workbook for Upper Elementary Students" - Connecticut

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Laws and the Courts
A Workbook for Upper Elementary Students
The State of Connecticut Judicial Branch and
The Consortium for Law and Citizenship Education, Inc.
Laws and the Courts
A Workbook for Upper Elementary Students
The State of Connecticut Judicial Branch and
The Consortium for Law and Citizenship Education, Inc.
The State of Connecticut Judicial Branch and the Consortium for Law and Citizenship Educa-
tion, Inc. acknowledge and thank the Administrative Office of the Courts, Judicial Counsel of
California and the Wisconsin Supreme Court for giving us permission to use some segments of
their workbooks entitled What’s Happening in Court?
In addition, the Connecticut Judicial Branch extends its sincere appreciation to the elementary
school teachers and Judicial Branch interns who assisted in the development of this publication.
© 2017 State of Connecticut Judicial Branch. All rights reserved. No part of this book may
be reproduced or utilized in any form, or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including
photo-copying, recording, or by any other information storage and retrieval system, without
written permission from the author. Connecticut educators may reproduce part or all of this
book for educational purposes. For all other uses permission is required.
Laws and the Courts
Welcome from the Chief Justice
You are now going to learn about the
Connecticut court system. This is a very
important area for you to learn about because
the courts affect people’s lives in many
different ways – even children’s.
The most important thing about our courts is
that judges protect everybody’s rights – your
parents, your neighbors, your teachers and
yours too. This is a very important role in a
democracy and our government relies on the courts to ensure that
everyone is treated fairly under the law.
This book will tell you what you need to know about laws and why
we need them; who makes, enforces and interprets the law; what
the different types of courts are and who are the people in the
Superior Court. By the time you finish with this workbook, I am
certain that you will not only have learned about our state courts,
but have had a lot of fun doing so.
Very truly yours,
Chase T. Rogers
Chief Justice
Table of Contents
Section One
What do we need to know about laws?
What are laws? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
Section Two
Who makes, enforces, and interprets the laws? . . . . . . . 9
Section Three
What are the different types of courts? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
Section Four
Who are the people in the Superior Court? . . . . . . . . . . . 27
Section Five
Let’s see what you have learned . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33
Glossary of Terms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43
Laws and the Courts
SECTION
ONE
What do we need to know
about laws? What are laws?
Terms to know:
Society
Government
Rule of Law
Laws
Enforce
society
A
is a group of people living in a community.
In our society, we have a set of rules called laws. One example of a law is the law
requiring children to attend school. Another example of a law is the law that prohibits
people from stealing.
The
government
is the body that makes laws and
enforces
laws. This means that
the government decides what the laws will be and makes sure that everyone follows
them. A government can function successfully only when people respect the laws.
Rule of
Law. This means that everyone is required to obey
Our society is based on the
the law. Senators, judges, the police and even the president must follow the laws. It
Everyone must follow the
laws.
doesn’t matter what the person does for a job.
We need laws to keep order and protect
us, our property and our rights.
3
Laws and the Courts
Laws and the Courts