Supreme Court Lesson Plan

Instructor: Sharon Linde

Sharon has a Masters of Science in Mathematics

Teach your students about the function and structure of the Supreme Court with this lesson plan. Use the engaging video to teach about jurisdiction and other topics, guide learning with questions, then apply concepts with a fun activity.

Learning Objectives

After this lesson, students will be able to:

  • explain the functions of Supreme Court
  • define key terms
  • demonstrate understanding of the justice system and the actions of the Supreme Court


  • 50 minutes


  • Image of the Supreme Court Justices
  • Role cards for students to use to do a mock petition for a hearing with the Supreme Court. For example, you'll need 6 justices, petitioners, file clerks, etc.
  • Additional resources if necessary, such as technology or more specific information on petitions to the U.S. Supreme Court

Key Vocabulary

  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • Jurisdiction
  • Original jurisdiction
  • Appellate jurisdiction
  • Writ of certiorari

Curriculum Standards

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RH.6-8.4

Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including vocabulary specific to domains related to history/social studies.

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.7.2

Analyze the main ideas and supporting details presented in diverse media and formats (e.g., visually, quantitatively, orally) and explain how the ideas clarify a topic, text, or issue under study.

  • CCSS.ELA-Literacy.SL.7.6

Adapt speech to a variety of contexts and tasks, demonstrating command of formal English when indicated or appropriate. (See grade 7 Language standards 1 and 3 here for specific expectations.)

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