Friday, 16 August 2013

Highlights of 2012: Law Games

Who would wake up on a typical Saturday morning? What’s there to wake up to, you may ask. What about the Help University Law Olympiad? On 7 July, this competition proved to be an eye-opening experience into the world of law, so it was definitely worth to wake up for.

The morning started with a high as teams cheered gleefully through the roll call, which was definitely in the spirit of good sportsmanship. After a warm welcome by the Head of the Help University Law Faculty, the competition started without further ado.

The entire competition comprises of four games; ‘Visitors from Outer Space’, ‘Whodunnit’, ‘Trivia Quiz’ and ‘What’s Your Verdict?’ Think that one has to swallow legal textbooks to ace these? Wrong! These games test a team’s logic, common sense and reasonableness, but no knowledge of law is needed.

Firstly, we did ‘Visitors from Outer Space’. In a nutshell, it puts a team in a scenario of having alien invaders demanding us humans to surrender five out of ten rights we currently have, to ‘eliminate excessive liberties’ as the aliens claim. In ten minutes, teams were asked to arrange the surrendered rights in increasing importance in our lives and present to the adjudicators the reasons why it was surrendered in another ten minutes. Across the room, reasons from the considerably normal to the outrageously wacky were presented to the adjudicators as teams explain their preference.

Secondly, ‘Whodunnit’ followed shortly after. In this game, which lasted thirty minutes, teams read three cases being examined by Detective Mata-Mata, and extract a set of facts to identify the culprit of the crime and the evidences to support it. It proved quite thought-provoking as one has to examine every miniscule detail of the cases to collect evidence in identifying the culprit.

Thirdly, teams did the ten-minute ‘Trivia Quiz’. It comprises of four categories of ten questions each. It covered quotes of the famous, clichés, places and general knowledge. Again, no amount of textbook swallowing would help here; with prior knowledge and pure logic becoming a prized asset in allowing a team to sail smoothly through these waters.

Fourthly, minds were yet again provokes with ‘What’s Your Verdict’ as the last game of the day. We examined two cases in order to issue whether the defendant is liable or not in the first, and whether the accused is guilty or not in the second. Teams were also required to give reasons to their verdict, the evidences to support their stance.

Lastly, after lunch, we witnessed a mock trial, acted out by the faculty members. It provided a glimpse into courtroom proceedings and the nitty-gritty of the judicial branch of government. To ensure it was not desert dry, drama and gags were interspersed throughout the proceedings to spice things up. It definitely didn’t disappoint, as most of us sat at the edge of our chairs, watching on as to not miss out on the best parts.

At the end of the day, as the prizes were given away, we left empty-handed literally, but we left with a wealth of knowledge as we have gotten through this experience.
By Kiwan Richard, 16, SMK Bandar Utama Damansara (3), Selangor

This post is part of the line-up ahead of the blog's second anniversary. All these posts will be taken from articles written by students featuring the school on School Times, the educational pull-out from the New Straits Times.

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