NH Bar Association Educational Program Wins National Award
The New Hampshire Bar Association has been awarded the 2008 LexisNexis Community & Educational Outreach Award for the Leapholes Pilot Project.
Robin Knippers, left, and Denice DeStefano of the New Hampshire Bar Association display the national award the Bar received for the creation of an educational pilot program. Students from Belmont Middle School were among nine classes that participated last year.
This past year, the Association’s Law Related Education program worked with nine groups of middle school students -- including classes from Belmont Middle School and Timberlane Regional Middle School on a pilot project to teach students about concepts of justice.
The project was centered on Leapholes, a novel written for teens by lawyer and best-selling novelist James Grippando.
Grippando's visit to New Hampshire to view the projects of the Belmont and Timberlane students is depicted in a NH Bar Association-produced video on YouTube.
With funding from the NH Bar Foundation, the Bar Association provided the classes with books for each student and teacher. With the help of NHBA members who visited the classrooms, students discussed the legal aspects of the book, which involves a young time-traveling hero who learns about the legal system by visiting people from major cases in history.
Students from Belmont and Timberlane Regional middle schools were treated to a visit from the author that took place at the Bar Center.
Denice DeStefano, of Bristol, Assistant Executive Director of the NH Bar Association, oversees the Bar's Law Related Education programs, was instrumental in creating the pilot project. She was inspired to develop the program centered on the Grippando novel after meeting the author at a an ABA event shortly after Leapholes, the novelist's first book for young adults, was published by the American Bar Association.
DeStefano says that information about how other schools can use the book in classes this year is available by e-mailing Law Related Education Coordinator Robin E. Knippers or by calling her at 603-224-6942.