1. Ask students if any of them think they might like to study law and become attorneys. Both boys and girls who are interested in the law should be able to profit from a study of women's experience with the law.
2. Using the web sites listed below, divide students into five groups, asking each group to research one of the following aspects of the history of women in the law:
- Why was it so difficult for women to enter the legal profession?
- What attitudes and values tended to prevent women from practicing law?
- Who were some of the early women who pioneered in the legal profession?
- How has the situation changed for women who wish to enter the law?
- What problems, if any, still need to be solved?
3. When students have finished their research, ask each group to prepare a PowerPoint presentation which lays out the substance of their findings to share with the rest of the class.
4. Conclude the lesson with a whole-class discussion of problems and issues that still remain for women in the law and ask them to speculate on possible solutions.
Early Women in the Law
Women Lawyers and State Bar Admission
Women Lawyers in the United States
Women and Other Strangers Before the Bar
Women in the Law Today
An Unfishished Agenda: Women in the Legal Profession
Sandra Day O'Connor
Ruth Bader Ginsburg
This lesson was developed by Averil McClelland, Kent State University.