At the end of the course you should be able to perform the following with regards to opening statements:


1.                  Organize the opening statement around the principles of PRIMACY and RECENCY, i.e. starting with a concise statement of your theory of the case and ending on a high note.


2.                  Start the opening statement with a THEME, i.e. a bumper sticker that captures the essence of your case theory.


3.                  Tell a STORY of what happened in the case organized in such a way that it is:








        Uses head notes, rhetorical questions and conclusory sentences to signal changes in topics


        Arranged around your theory of the case


        Begins with a theme sentenceBa bumper stickerBcapturing the essence of your case theory


        Puts the listener at the time and place


        Explains motives, psychological states, beliefs and feelings


        Avoids excessive use of AThe evidence will show . . . .@


        Anticipates the other side=s case


        Paints with a broad brush avoiding detail except on those points in dispute where credibility is at issue


        Avoids overstatement


        Incorporates exhibits and demonstrative aids where appropriate


        Avoids discussing damages, but not injuries


        Uses impact words and phrases; avoids legalese and tentative language


4.                  Use an interesting and dynamic STYLE by:


        Not reading your opening statement or relying excessively on notes


        Preparing and rehearsing


        Being in the moment, projecting belief


        Maintaining eye contact


        Moving for a purpose


        Using appropriate gestures


        Being dynamic by projecting energy, varying tone, pace and volume, using pauses


        Avoiding distracting mannerisms


5.                  Avoid ARGUMENT