Discussion starter activity

Of the following two actions, which do you think is against the law? Do you think either is wrong? Be prepared to explain your opinions.

You can’t find a bin in the local park so you throw your litter into the bushes where it can’t be seen. 
You are on a long bus journey and a pregnant woman asks you for your seat but you ignore her.

What do you think is the difference between something being illegal, and something being immoral? Use your own examples to help you explain your ideas.

When you have discussed this look at the definitions of illegal and immoral.

illegal –forbidden by the law

immoral – going against a moral principle or principles, or against the established patterns of behaviour of society.

Wrong side of the law?

Which of these acts do you think are against the law?
Drag and Drop anything you think is an offence below the blue line. Try and arrange the offences in order from most to least serious in your opinion.


  • Is there anything here that you didn’t know was against the law?
  • Do you feel that ‘the punishment fits the crime’ in these cases?

Choose one of the crimes and punishments from the examples you looked at today. Decide whether or not you think the punishment is suitable, then explain your opinion in a reasoned way giving examples and evidence as appropriate.

Thinking right

  • Can you think of any reasons why a person might break the law, or break a moral code?
  • What do you think might motivate people to follow laws or codes for ‘right’ behaviour?
Reasons for breaking the law
Reasons for following the law