Part Four:

Older Children

This part contains:

*Starting up - introductory activities

*Living together - activities about respect

*Who, me? - activities about responsibility

*Rights for Life - activities about universality of rights

*What's fair? - activities about justice

*My rights / Your rights - activities about situations where rights conflict

*Action! - taking human rights beyond the classroom

" All I need is an idea....."

Ukrainian student teacher.

Guide to the activities:

To make them easier to use, the activities in this part of the manual have the same format.

Information / Examples / Gamecards:

Some activities have additional parts. To avoid missing anything, read the whole activity through before attempting it, and check that you have found all the items listed under "What you need".

Starting up - introductory activities

Because several of the activities in this part of the manual refer to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, here are two activities to help familiarize your students with it.

These activities build on those for younger children on pages 46 - 49.

The Imaginary Country(This activity is based on ideas from Ed O'Brien and Nancy Flowers)

Aim: This activity introduces students to the idea based of rights based on needs, and familiarizes them with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. It raises ideas of how we value rights, and the "Choices" give options for making a list of "classroom rights."

Learning points:

- Human Rights documents are based on our own inherent needs.

- We value some rights more highly depending on our own situation, but every right is important to someone.

What you need:

- Simplified Version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights from page 163.

Time: About an hour and a quarter for the basic activity.

How to do it:

* Form the class into small groups of five or six.

* Read out the following scenario:

"Imagine that you have discovered a new country, where no one has lived before, and where there are no laws and no rules. You and the other members of your group will be the settlers in this new land. You do not know what social position you will have in the new country."

*Each student should individually list three rights which they think should be guaranteed for everyone in this new country.

* Now ask the students to share and discuss their lists within the group, and select a list of 10 rights which their whole group thinks are important.

*Now ask each group to give their country a name and to write their 10 chosen rights on a large piece of paper or a blackboard where everyone can see them.

*Each group presents their list to the class. As they do this, make a "master list" which should include all of the different rights from the group lists. Some rights will be mentioned several times, write them on the "master list" once, and tick them each time they are repeated.

*When all the groups have presented their lists, identify rights on the "master" list which overlap or contradict one another. Can the list be rationalized? Can some similar rights be grouped together?

*When the "master" list is completed, compare the Simplified Version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights from page 163. What are the differences/similarities between your list and the UDHR?

*Use the following questions to draw out the learning points. The "Choices" below give options for extending the activity.


*Did your ideas about which rights were most important change during this activity?

*How would life be if we excluded some of these rights?

*Are there any rights which you now want to add to the final list?

*Did anyone list a right themselves which was not included in any of the lists?

*Why is it useful for us to make such a list?


*If you have time, ask students to put a mark next to the three rights on the "master" list which they personally think are most important, or which they think we could live without. (This could be done during a class break.)

*This activity has been used in many different countries. In countries were war is a problem, students value the right to life most highly, while in those with economic problems the right to work comes first. You can explore this issue with the students by asking question such as: "Do you think the situation in our country has affected your choices of rights? Why? Why not?"

*As a project (see page 30) this activity can be adapted so that students make a list of "classroom rights" which they think would improve their school environment. For example, the right to work in peace, the right to have your point of view respected, the right to privacy for your personal property.... Be open to their suggestions, but emphasize that all rights have corresponding responsibilities. This "living document" could be displayed in the classroom and updated as necessary. Ask the class "What do you think should happen if someone violates these rights?"

*As an action, students and teachers could agree a list of "Our school is..." which could be displayed in the schools entrance for all to see. Some students who have done this chose to focus on the problem of violence in their school. They wrote: "Our school is: a place of safety, a place where older students look after the younger ones, a place where we respect each other's rights...".

Rights in the News

(Based on a demonstration by Nancy Flowers)

Aim: This analysis and discussion activity is a good introduction to rights for older students who might already have some mental picture of what human rights are. It helps them to recognize rights and to place a human rights "framework" on everyday situations.

Learning point:

- Rights on paper relate to everyday situations.

What you need:

- Old newspapers and magazines of all kinds, enough for small groups to have at least one each.

- Blackboard or large piece of paper and pens.

- Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Simplified Version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights from Part Five of this manual.

Time: One hour.

How to do it:

*Read the following text to the class:

"In our modern world we all have access to more information than ever before. For most of us, this information comes through the media, and especially via the news. Everyday, TV screens and newspapers are filled with situations and stories which are hopeful, tragic, happy, sad, simple or complex. Usually, we look at the terrible news stories and feel powerless. However, by looking again, using the ideas of human rights, we can see patterns of success, where rights are protected and acted upon, and patterns of problems, where rights are denied."

*Ask the class to form small groups of four.

*Distribute the newspapers and magazines randomly.

*Using the whole of the blackboard/large paper draw a large circle. On the circumference of the circle write the following three phrases in such a way that they are as far away from each other as possible. (This allows lots of room for newspaper cuttings to be stuck up later).

Three phrases:

- Rights denied

- Rights protected

- Rights in action

*Ask the groups to look through their newspapers and magazines to find things which illustrate each of the three phrases. Encourage the class to use all parts of the magazines and newspapers, including advertisements, classified adverts and other items.

* If necessary, encourage the class with the following examples:

- Rights denied:

This could be an article complaining that a municipal health clinic has been closed without consulting the local community. This would illustrate the denial of the right to health or even life!

- Rights protected:

This could be a story about children who have been rescued from people who were mistreating them.

- Rights in action:

This could be a picture of a footballer scoring a goal, illustrating the rights to leisure, health, freedom of association, or even travel (if it is an international match!)

* When the class has completed the task (usually after about 10 minutes) ask them to look at the Universal Declaration of Human Rights or its Simplified Version to find the article or articles which relate to the stories or pictures which they have found in the newspapers. Allow another 10 minutes for this part of the activity.

* Now ask each group in turn to stick up the findings on the blackboard/large paper. As they do this, they should explain why they chose that example and which specific UDHR articles it illustrates.

* Some of the selected examples will involve situations where the same right or rights are denied, protected, and in action all at the same time! Use the questions below to help the class to analyze these situations.


* Was it easy to find examples to illustrate rights denied, rights protected and rights in action?

* Was one phrase more difficult to illustrate? Why?

* Were there any newspaper articles or other examples where all three phrases could be said to be relevant? Which? Why?

* Were there any examples where one person or a group had their rights protected and this resulted in someone else's rights being denied? Could the concept that "my rights end where yours begin and vice versa" be useful in such a situation? Would using this concept give a better result for all concerned? Why? Why not?


*As a project (see page 30) students could examine international efforts to protect the rights of civilians in conflict situations, or the defence of the rights of a vulnerable group in your local area. (Note: Although students need to know that rights are often denied, it is important for them to develop a knowledge of how they are protected if they are to feel that the defence of human rights is possible.)

* Also see page 35 for more ideas about monitoring media for rights stories. See page 93 for ideas about how to spread this awareness in the school.

Living together - activities about respect

These activities emphasize that the way we interact every day has a direct effect on respect for human rights. A game with rules raises questions about how laws are made, and an activity about listening focuses on the right to an opinion and the responsibility to respect the opinions of others.

These activities build on those for younger children on pages 50 - 64.

Camping Out

(Adapted from an idea in Understand the Law 1994, The Citizenship Foundation)

Aim: This game helps students understand how communities develop rules and laws to protect people's rights.

Learning points:

- Rules of conduct prevent conflict and protect rights.

- Such rules are best made democratically.

What you need:

A copy of the "situations" from pages 104 and 105 for each group.

Time: About one and a half hours

How to do it:* Form the class into small groups of five or six.

* Tell the students:

"Imagine that you are going on a camping trip with a group of friends. Someone has told you about a wonderful location for a camp, a clearing in the woods near a lake, far from civilization. You have been planning together for several weeks, and finally the weekend arrives. After a long journey, you arrive at the clearing. You have brought everything you need for your holiday, including one large tent for all of you to sleep in. There is a well nearby with good water, and you have permission to cut wood and make fires. There are no other facilities, no rules, and no adults or camp administrator. You set up camp, swim, and prepare for a week of fun!

However, by the end of the first day at the campsite, there have already been some disagreements about how the camp should be run. You all realise that it would be better if you could agree on ways to make your holiday easier. You hold a meeting."

* Ask the students in their groups to see if they can think of four or five problems that might face a group like themselves. Ask them to decide how each problem could be solved.

* Ask the students to consider the following questions:

- How did they make their decisions?

- Did anyone disagree?

- Did everyone have an equal say?

* Now read the following text to the students:

"After the meeting, all goes well and things are much better. However, after a couple of days, more problems arise, which together you have to sort out to prevent them happening again."

* If you are able to copy the "situations" from pages 104 and 105, distribute a set of them to each group. In their groups the students should place all the "situations" face down on the table and take them up one at a time. They should try to reach a decision about what to do in each "situation". If possible they should try to agree. (If you were unable to hand-copy or photocopy the "situations", read them out one by one, and try to reach a decision as a class, although this will be more difficult).

* If some groups finish the game more quickly than others, ask them to think about the questions below.

* When all the groups have finished playing the game, go through the "situations" asking the whole class what decisions they made. Don't ask every group to comment on every "situation" - that would take too long.

* Follow the activity with a discussion using the questions below.


* In this activity you used rules to protect the rights of everyone in the camp. What would have happened if you were unable to agree on rules or if everyone ignored the rules?

* What makes a good/bad rule?

* What about laws? Should you always obey laws, even if they are bad?

* Some rules and laws are unwritten. For example, "moral" or religious laws. Why do groups of people obey these rules/laws, even though they don't have to?

* Rules and laws are usually enforced by a punishment or sanction. You probably decided to use sanctions against people who broke the rules in the camp. What is the aim of sanctions? What sort of sanctions are most effective? Can sanctions be counter-productive?


* This activity could be the starting-point for making a set of class rules which are agreed by the students and the teacher in a participatory way (see page 29 for more ideas about this).

* In many countries, execution is the punishment for all sorts of "crimes", from murder to offences such as trading on the black market. This activity can be a starting-point for a discussion about whether or not execution is a real deterrent for crime.

Situation Cards for "Camping Out":

Situation One

Someone has to sleep near the door of the tent, which doesn't close properly. By the morning, this person's belongings have usually spilled out of the opening onto the wet grass. He or she complains that their belongings will be damaged. What do you do?.

Situation Two

You all agreed at the meeting how the camp should be run. Now, one of you takes no notice of what was decided. How can you enforce the rules?

Situation Three

Someone left the kettle boiling on the fire and went away to swim. The kettle fell into the fire and sparks set fire to a corner of your tent. You all realise that you have a safety problem. There may be others. What do you do?

Situation Four

Getting water from the well is a very boring job. Everyone would prefer to go swimming than fetch water. However, one of you strains your arm while swimming and can't carry water anymore. This means that the rest of you will each have to spend more time carrying water. What do you do?

Situation Five

Two of you are smokers, the others are not. The non-smokers strongly object to the smell of smoke in the tent but the smokers feel they should be able to smoke whilst they are relaxing. What do you do?

Situation Six

One of you has brought a radio and plays loud music early in the morning. This makes everyone angry. What do you do?

Situation Seven

You all share one tent, but cannot agree about keeping it tidy. Some like the tent to be neat all the time, the others don't. The arguments are affecting the atmosphere in the camp. What do you do? Situation Eight

Someone damages an expensive guitar belonging to someone else. She or he refuses to pay for the repairs. What do you do?

Situation Nine

A friend of yours joins you for a couple of days. She or he has brought their own tent, but ignores the rules which everyone else has agreed. What do you do?

Situation Ten

Two of you feel that the camp should have a rule about alcohol and drinking. They ask for a meeting to discuss the matter. Most of you are against a complete ban. What do you do?

Active listening

Aim: This listening activity helps students to improve their listening skills and to think about what makes "good" and "bad" listening.

Learning points:

- Listening is an important skill for respecting each others' right to an opinion. (See Article 12 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, and Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, in Part Five of this manual).

- We can improve our listening skills by practice.

What you need: The boxes "What helps us to listen?" and "What prevents us from listening?" from pages 107 and 108.

Time: About 30 minutes

How to do it:

* Form the class into pairs.

* Explain that, in a moment, one person in each pair will have to speak without stopping while the other person listens as carefully as they can. The speaker can speak about anything they want to. For example, themselves, their family, an interesting experience....

* Allow a moment for the pairs to decide who will talk and who will listen.

* Give the signal for the speakers to begin speaking.

* Allow the speakers a minute or two of uninterrupted speech. Then, before they begin to run out of things to say, clap your hands and ask them to stop.

* Ask the listeners to repeat back to their partner the last two sentences which that person said. This request is usually a big surprise - few people will be able to remember the two sentences perfectly!

* The pairs exchange roles, the listener now speaks and the speaker listens.

* After a couple of minutes, stop the speakers again. It is likely that the listeners this time will have been listening more carefully - so ask them to repeat the last THREE sentences which their partner said!

* Use the questions below to draw out the learning points.


*Could you remember the sentences?

* Was it easier to remember them the second time? Why?

* What did you do to help you to listen? Did you do anything special with your body? Or with your face? What about your mind?

* What prevented you from listening?

* Now show the class the information in the boxes "What helps us to listen?" and "What prevent us from listening?" from pages 107 and 108. Is there anything in these boxes which they did not think of? Why?

* Listening is an important skill for respecting and protecting human rights. It is especially important for Article 12 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child, and Article 19 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, but also for all of the other Articles. Why is this so? What do we gain from listening to each other? Have you ever been in a situation where no-one would listen to you? How do we feel when our opinion is ignored? Do you agree with the idea that we can improve our listening skills by practice?


* If you wish, you can continue the game, maybe swopping partners or increasing the number of sentences which the listener must remember each time.

* It can be fun to repeat the game, making it harder every time, over several days or weeks, so that the students can see their listening improve.

What prevents us from listening?

* On-off Listening

People think faster than they talk. This means that when you listen to someone, you have a lot of spare time for thinking. Often, we use this time to think about lunch, or what we did last night, instead of thinking about what the other person is saying!

* Prejudice Listening

In every part of the world, there are words or phrases which cause people to stop listening. Words like "capitalist", "communist", "fundamentalist". When people hear these words, they stop listening and start to plan their defence, or a counter-attack.

* Closed Mind Listening

Sometimes, we decide quickly that the person (or the subject) is boring, wrong, or not relevant, or that we know what they are going to say. Then we stop listening.

* Distracted Listening

Noise, lights, temperature, other things in the room, or what you ate for breakfast can all prevent us from listening to what people are saying. However, with practice, we can still listen well in these circumstances.

What helps us to listen?

We listen with our bodies as well as with our minds...

* face the speaker

* have good eye contact

* have an open posture (don't fold your arms, turn your back......)

* lean towards the speaker

* relax

Listen to what is being said...

* listen for the central theme, not just the "facts"

* keep an open mind

* think ahead

* analyze and evaluate

* don't interrupt

Listen to how it is being said...

* non-verbal signs (for example face expressions, body posture)

* tone of voice

Listening is important because...

* It shows people that you value their experience and what they say

* It encourages people to talk honestly and freely

* It can help you to identify areas where people agree or disagree, and helps you to think of solutions to these disagreements

Who, me? - activities about responsibility

These activities emphasize personal responsibility. A real-life moral dilemma is used to raise questions about honesty and everyday responsibility. Another activity about censorship looks at the responsible use of power. The overall aim of these activities is to show that rights have corresponding responsibilities.

These activities build on those for younger children on pages 65 - 70.

Rights and Responsibilities

Aim: This short listing and discussion activity helps students to understand the connection between rights and responsibilities

Learning point:

- Every right has a corresponding responsibility.

What you need:

- Simplified Version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (see page 163).

- Information about Rights and Responsibilities (see page 111).

Time: Forty-five minutes

How to do it:

* Ask the students to form pairs. Each student should write down five important rights which they think they should have in the school and five important rights which they think they should have at home. For example, the right to their own space.

* Ask each student to swop their list with their partner. Each student should think of the responsibilities which correspond with each right that their partner listed. For example, the responsibility to respect the space of the people they live with.

* Every pair reports to the rest of the class two rights and their corresponding responsibilities from their lists. The teacher should write the rights and responsibilities on the wall.

* Ask the students to read the Information about Rights and Responsibilities. Start a discussion using the following questions:


* Was it easy or hard to think of each right's corresponding responsibility?

* In the example about seatbelts (see Information about Rights and Responsibilities, page 111), who do you think is right, the government or the people who refuse to wear seatbelts?

* What if someone you knew was injured because a driver refused to wear a seatbelt? How might this happen? How would you feel?

* What if a sick child died because the doctor was too busy helping a driver who had refused to wear a seatbelt and was injured? Look at the Simplified Version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights on page 163. Which rights are involved in this example?

* Can you think of similar examples where other rights and responsibilities conflict?


* Because issues of rights and responsibilities are common in schools (for example the right to use equipment, and the responsibility not to damage it) this activity can be the basis for using the language of rights and responsibility in everyday situations.

* As an action, students and teachers can keep the list of rights and equivalent responsibilities on the wall. When conflicts occur, or when other rights issues come up, anyone is free to add to the list. For example, if some students have been "borrowing" other people's possessions without permission, a student might decide to add to the list: "I have the right to privacy and security for my belongings / And I also have the responsibility to respect the privacy and security of my classmates." It might be useful to write at the top of the list: "We all have the right to add to this list / And we have the responsibility not to write things which violate the rights of others".

* To help clarify rights and responsibilities, students could read the following information on "Negative" and "Positive" rights from page 111, then go through the Universal Declaration of Human Rights identifying "Negative" and "Positive" rights (they will find that many rights consist equally of "negative" (responsibility) and "positive" (right) elements.

Information about Rights and Responsibilities

Every right has a corresponding responsibility. For example, your right to freedom of speech is limited by your responsibility not to say untrue things which will degrade another person and abuse their right to dignity and good reputation.

The balance of our rights and our responsibilities to respect the rights of other people means that we usually have to exercise our rights within certain restraints.

There are many situations where rights and responsibilities of different people conflict. For example, some countries have laws making the wearing of seatbelts compulsory in cars. Many people oppose these laws, arguing that it is a restriction of their right to act freely.

The governments of these countries argue that people in cars have a responsibility to the hospitals, doctors, and the rest of society to do everything possible to avoid getting injured while they are driving. It is argued that if people do not wear seatbelts and are injured, they take time, money and hospital space away from people with illnesses, and therefore restrict the right of sick people to proper health care.

Information on "Negative" and "Positive" Rights:

The term "negative right" is used to describe a right which stops something harmful or unpleasant being done to us. Examples of negative rights are the right not to be killed or badly treated or to have your possessions stolen. These are negative rights because they say NO to someone who might want to hurt you.

The term "positive right" is used to describe a right which declares our freedom to do something. For example, the right to be paid for your work is a positive right. These are positive rights because they tell you that YES you have this right, and they tell other people that YES they must support your right. For example, your employer has a responsibility to pay you.


(Adapted from p.82 of Understand the Law 1993, The Citizenship Foundation)

Aim: This case study uses a moral dilemma to introduce students to ideas of responsibility in society. Although the person in the case study is accidentally overpaid a large amount, many students will have been given the wrong change in a shop and had to make a similar choice.

Learning point:

- Every right has a corresponding responsibility. For example, the right to be judged equally by the law has the corresponding responsibility to respect the law.

What you need: The Simplified Version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (see page 163).

Time: At least one hour

How to do it:

* Form the class into small groups of five or six.

* Read the following text to the class:

"Every month Alexander puts a small part of his wages into his account at the local bank. It's not a lot, but it is the only way he can save enough for a holiday with his children.

Each month the bank sends Alexander a statement telling him how much he has in his account. This month Alexander sees that he has much more money than he thought. There must be a mistake. He writes to the bank to say it has given him $2,000 more than it should have.

'No,' says the bank, 'there has been no mistake. The money is yours.'

Alexander writes again. 'we have double checked,' says the bank, 'we have not made a mistake.'

Alexander still isn't happy. He writes for a third time, and the bank tells him again that the money is his.

After this, Alexander doesn't think he has anything to lose. He starts to spend the money on things he and his family need. He buys some new furniture, redecorates his flat and goes away on a week's holiday with his family.

A little later, the people at the bank realize that they have made a mistake. The $2,000 that Alexander has been given belongs to another customer who has the same name. The bank asks Alexander for the money back. He gives them what he has left, but he has spent more than $1,000. Alexander is charged with theft.

If Alexander is to be found legally guilty of theft, it must be proved in court that he:

- behaved dishonestly

- took or kept something belonging to someone else

- intended to keep it permanently."

* Ask the students to decide in groups whether Alexander should be found guilty of theft. To answer this, the students need to ask three questions:

- Did Alexander behave dishonestly?

- Did Alexander take something from someone else?

- Did Alexander intend to keep it?

If the student's answer to all three questions is yes, then Alexander is guilty in law.

If the students answered no to one or more questions then he is not guilty.

- If the students decide that Alexander is guilty in law of theft, what punishment do they think he should be given?

For example, in England, for a crime of this kind a judge can send a person to prison for up to 10 years or make them pay a fine of up to 2,000 (about $3000).(You can find out what the punishment would be in your country and tell the students what this is.)

- If the students decide that Alexander is not guilty, would they make him pay back the money that he spent on his family and his home?

* Now tell the class what actually happened to Alexander:

"After a three day trial, the jury found Alexander not guilty of theft. Juries don't have to give reasons for their verdict, but we can presume that Alexander's attempts to draw the error to the attention of the bank convinced the jury that he had not behaved with dishonest intent.

Although Alexander was found not guilty of theft, there still remained the question of whether he should return the money that he had already spent. It was not within the power of the court to deal with this and the bank needed to bring a new case through a different court to reclaim the money."


* What would you have done if you were Alexander? Why?

* Who was responsible for correcting the bank's mistake - Alexander or the bank? Why?

* Would it make a difference to your answer if the amount of money was smaller/larger?

* What about other cases? For example, is it the responsibility of a car owner to lock her or his car or the responsibility of everyone else not to steal it if it is unlocked?

* Imagine you were a friend of Alexander's. Would you report him to the police?

* Who is responsible for enforcing the law?

* Look at the Simplified Version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights on page 163). Which rights are involved in this case?


* Students could write a story about a situation where they had to take responsibility and make a moral decision. For example, they find some money in the street - do they hand it in?

* As a project, students can find out about the legal system in your country. Many courtrooms accept visitors. The project could result in a mock trial of a case involving rights and responsibilities.

Let Me Speak!

Aim: This letter-writing activity examines the rights and responsibilities of the individual and the state regarding freedom of expression. Because it depends a lot on trust between the students and the teacher, it is better to use it only when the students have already had experience of other activities for teaching human rights.

Learning points: - Every right has a corresponding responsibility.

- For example, the right to freedom of expression has the corresponding responsibility to respect the opinion of others.

Time: An hour and a half

What you need: The Simplified Version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (see page 163). The Information on Censorship from page 117.

How to do it:

* Ask the class to imagine that they are each writing to the local newspaper. (If your area does not have a local newspaper, you can invent one with the class, including the title, the frequency it is printed, etc) Ask them to write a short letter about something which they do not like at all in their local area. Explain that these letters will not be seen by anyone outside the class. Make sure that they are not.

* After the students have written their letters, form the class into pairs. Ask each pair to exchange their letters. Now ask them to imagine that they are all editors of the local newspaper. They have received this letter which they are worried will upset the local authorities and the Mayor. Ask them to cross out (censor) the parts of the letter which they think are dangerous. They are allowed to change the letter in any way they like.

* Return all the letters to those who wrote them. Either as a class, or in groups, discuss the questions below.

* After the discussion, go through the Information on Censorship from page 117 and ask the class to think of a scenario to illustrate each of the points. For example, under "WHAT is being censored" the information lists "artists". Ask the students why they think someone would want to censor an artist. If your country has censorship now or in the past, refer to that, giving specific examples.


* Did you use some self-censorship before you wrote your letter? Why/Why not?

* Did you use polite or offensive language?

* If you wrote a polite letter, was it because you felt responsible toward the feelings of others or was it because you were afraid of possible punishment?

* Were you thinking more about how to improve the situation or did you just want to show your anger?

* How did you feel when your letter was censored?

* How did your letter look after censorship?

* How did you choose what to cross out on your friend's letter?

* How do you think you would react if you were a local official who received a letter of complaint? What if the letter attacked your personality or used offensive language?

* Do you think a government has a responsibility to listen to all complaints, even if they are "dangerous"? Why/ Why not?

* Was your letter "dangerous"?

* Why do you think we did this activity?


* If you think this is appropriate, the activity can be altered so that the students imagine that they are writing to a school newspaper.

* As a project (see page 30) ask the class to monitor newspapers over a period. They could choose one news item and compare how different newspapers write about the same issue according to their bias.

* If students feel strongly about an issue which they see in the newspapers, they could write a polite letter to the media as a class to express their point of view.

Information about Censorship

Freedom of expression is a human right set out in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (Article 19). Many people believe that it is the heart of a democratic society. Others say that too much freedom of expression can be dangerous. In many countries, free speech is controlled when it causes violence by inciting riots, calling on people to revolt, or when it is racist or bigoted. In some countries, criticism of the government is also censored.

WHO is doing the censoring:

Aim: This, and the brief introduction to each group of activities, tells you why they are useful.
Learning points: These are the key concepts contained in the activity. Keep them in mind as you do it.
What you need: This tells you what equipment you will need and what to prepare before the lesson.
Time: The times shown are for estimates of how long it will take to do the activity and any discussion component.
How to do it: This part explains the activity step-by-step. Where specific methods are used, these are explained in Part Two of this manual.
Questions: Most of the activities use open questions and discussion to help students to think about the issues raised by the activity. Advice on using open questions and discussion is available in Part Two of this manual.
Choices: These are suggestions for further work on an issue, or ideas for adapting activities for another age group.
- official censors- the government- the law- the media
- civil servants- employers- unions- pressure groups

WHAT is being censored:

- information- access to information- expression
- collective action- attacks upon accepted values- artists.
- writers- political opposition- critics of society

WHY censorship is carried out:

- to cover up incompetence and/or information- to defend status quo
- to protect government policy - to protect privilege
- to defend the vulnerable, for example, juveniles- to preserve power

HOW censorship is carried out:

- by stopping something from being carried out (preemptive censorship)

- by punishment after the event (punitive censorship)

WHEN censorship is carried out:

- before an election

- at a time of rapid social change

- during a period of national/international crisis

- when a government is weak and under threat

What would you do?

Aim: This case study about a political killing encourages students to discuss the responsibilities of the state and of the individual.

Learning point:

- Every right has a corresponding responsibility. For example, the right to personal security has a corresponding responsibility to defend this right for other people.

What you need:

- Case Study: Luis Diaz from page 119

- Information about political killings from page 120

- Text "What happened" from page 121

Time: About one hour

How to do it:

* Read, or ask the students to read the Case of Luis Diaz.

* Tell the students that deaths like Luis's are called extrajudicial executions or political killings. Read, or ask the students to read, the Information about Political Killings from page 120.

* Luis's family want to bring the people responsible for his death to justice. The army don't want this to happen. Ask the class to discuss in groups of four or five why the family and the army have these points of view. Here are some questions to help start the discussion:

- Who do you think is responsible for Luis' death: the army, the government, Luis, the soldier who shot him?

- How would it affect other members of the security forces if the guilty soldiers are punished?

- If the guilty soldiers are punished, would the power of the government, security forces and army increase or decrease? What about their image?

- What if they are not punished? Will the army lose the trust of the people?

- Does it matter if the army loses the trust of the people?

- Do you think it is alright to say that soldiers cannot be prosecuted for killing anyone, even in these circumstances?

- If the soldiers are not punished, what effect will this have on the public's perception of the legal system (courts, judges, etcetera) ?

* Ask the class to imagine that they were hiding nearby when Luis was killed. They saw the face and the army number of the soldier who shot him, but were not seen themselves.

What would you do in this situation?

Would you:

- go home and forget all about it ? Would this be possible?

- go to a police station and report it?

- tell Luis' family or someone else what you saw?

- do something else? What? Why?

* At the end of this activity, you can read to the class the text "What happened" (on page 121).


* Ask the class to imagine that they are friends, family, or colleagues of someone who has been extrajudicially executed. Ask them to write a poem or a story or paint a picture to show how these people might feel.

* As a project (see page 30) ask the class in groups to pretend that one of them is a journalist who has come to ask Luis Diaz's family about his death. Each group should prepare a small drama about the meeting with the journalist. Some questions to think about are:

Do they want to talk to the journalist? Is it dangerous? Can they trust him/her?

What does the journalist want? What is his/her point of view about the killing?

Can the journalist help to publicize the killing? Do the relatives/friends/colleagues of Luis want this?

Each group can present their drama for the class.

The Case of Luis Diaz

On 17 September 1992 Luis Enrique Landa D az, a 21 year old medical student at Carabobo State University in Aragua, Venezuela, was celebrating the medical school's 17th anniversary with fellow students and staff. According to witnesses, there was a verbal altercation - at a distance - between some of the students and the National Guards who were patrolling the area. Twenty members of the National Guard began firing teargas at the students.

At 2.30pm the guards started to shoot live ammunition in the direction of the students. The whole incident was recorded on video. Luis Landa was killed by a bullet a few minutes later. An official investigation was opened into the killing and a member of the National Guard was identified as a suspect. Proceedings were opened by the military and civilian courts.

However, in March 1993 the military courts requested exclusive jurisdiction over the case. In the past, the military courts have repeatedly exonerated members of the security forces accused of human rights violations.

Luis Landa's family, who sought publicity for his killing, were the target of systematic harassment. They received threatening phone calls and shots were fired at their house. In December 1992 Luis Landa's father was shot in the knee by a group of armed men in a car.

Information about Political Killings

The term "extrajudicial execution" describes an unlawful deliberate killing carried out on the orders of a government or with its complicity. If the authorities refuse to investigate an unjustifiable killing by the security forces or bring the perpetrators to justice, then it is an extrajudical execution for which the government is responsible. The term "political killing" can also be used as it is more easily understood and includes deliberate and arbitrary killings by armed political groups.

Political killings are different from killings which occur within a legally justifiable context. If someone is killed as the result of soldiers acting in self-defence, or by police during a riot, then the killing may be legally justifiable. Also, when someone is executed after being found guilty in a fair trial, the state responsible will argue that the killing is legally justifiable. Also, if a soldier kills for personal reasons and is punished like any other murderer, the killing he committed is not an extrajudical execution. Also, killing enemy soldiers during fighting is legal.

Many governments who use political killings are bound by treaties pledging them to respect human rights. Some governments do not try to justify their actions. Some use methods of murder which conceal the crime. Killings are carried out at night, when the victims are alone. Bodies are mutilated and hidden to avoid recognition. But most governments lie or play down the facts.

In June 1989, tanks of the Chinese army massacred pro-democracy protesters in Tiananmen Square, Beijing. Television cameras recorded it and it was headline news around the world. Thousands of people witnessed it. Hundreds of bodies were traced in morgues and hospitals. Nevertheless, the government initially said no one had been killed. This version was later amended: the government said 200 civilians had been killed in Beijing in clashes between soldiers and demonstrators, a gross underestimate of the reality.

Some governments make the excuse that violence is endemic in their societies, or results from ethnic tensions. Violence will be endemic in any society where human rights are violated. And intercommunal violence is not the inevitable product of ethnic or religious tensions. It often starts or is made worse because of official policies.

What happened

Luis' case was taken up by the human rights organization Amnesty International. As part of the Amnesty International campaign on the case, ordinary people from all over the world wrote letters to the government of Venezuela asking for action on Luis' death and for an end to the harassment of his family.

In July 1995, the National Guardsman who shot Luis was sentenced by a civilian court to eighteen years imprisonment, pending appeal.

Luis' father said that this was: "...thanks to international pressure..I had already lost hope.. The threats and attacks had nearly finished me off. That all changed with your campaign".

Rights for Life - activities about the universality of rights

These activities help students to understand that all human beings have the same rights. Our rights can be violated, but they cannot be taken away from us. We are born with them and die with them.

These activities build on those for younger children on pages 71- 78.

Wheel rights

(Adapted from Human Rights Education Workshop on Women's Human Rights and Gender Equality, presented by the Croatian NGO B.a.B.e, Sljeme, Croatia, March 1996)

Aim: This activity uses life experience as a basis for thinking about how we defend our own rights and the rights of others.

Learning point:

- In our lives we have already defended our rights and the rights of others, even if we did not use the language of "rights".

What you need: Blackboard or large piece of paper and pens.

Time: About one hour

How to do it:

* This is an activity for groups of about six people. In a large class, do the activity first with a small group (maybe during lunch). These students can then act as the facilitators of small groups.

* Divide the class into groups of about six people, with a facilitator for each group.

* The facilitator asks each person in the group to remember a time when they "stood up" for their rights or the rights of other people. (For example, students might remember a time when they were unfairly accused of something as a child.) If they wish, the members of the group can describe their memory to a neighbour. At the end of five minutes, every person in the group should have the following information ready:

1. A time when I "stood up" for rights

2. What happened

3. Where it happened

4. The motive. Why I "stood up"

5. Who or what were my sources of support

* While they are thinking, the facilitator draws a large wheel with spokes.

* The facilitator of each group now asks each member of the group to tell their story, keeping closely to the five points listed above.

* As each group member tells their story, the facilitator writes where each incident happened at the end of one of the spokes, and writes the motive and the sources of support along the spoke. (To make writing easier, the facilitator can summarize what is said, if the group member agrees.)

* When everyone has told their story, the facilitator can use the questions below to draw out the learning points.


* Were your experiences similar/different? For example, did they happen in public/private, at home/work?

* Were certain places or persons both positive and negative?

* Did anyone mention the law or authorities as a source of support? Why? Why not?

* How did you feel when you remembered "standing up"?

* Were these positive experiences? Why? Why not?

* Did many of us experience support or solidarity from our friends/ colleagues/ family? Why do you think this sort of support is useful when we stand up for human rights?


*This activity is very flexible. It can be used for analyzing any sort of past experience with any age group. It is particularly useful for showing that we share many experiences.

* Students can look at the human rights documents in Part Five of this manual to see which rights might have been relevant in their stories .

* As a project, ask students to monitor the media and their own experiences over a weekend. How many examples can they find of people "standing up" for their rights?


(Adapted from p.11 of Understand the Law 1994, The Citizenship Foundation)

Aim: This morally complex story about the right to life will help students to think about how rights work out in practice. It also links well with activities about conflict which start on page 138.

Learning points:

- Everyone has the right to life.

- There is a concept of "natural rights."

Time: About one hour

What you need: The Simplified Version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (see page 163).

How to do it:

* Show the class article three of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (see page 158), which sets out the right to life:

"Article 3. Everyone has the right to life, liberty and security of person."

* Form the class into small groups of five or six.

* Read the following story to the class:

"On 19 may 1884, four men set sail for Australia from England in a yacht called the Mignonette. They were Captain Thomas Dudley, First-mate Edwin Stephens, Seamen Ned Brooks and Richard Parker, the 17-year-old cabin boy. On 5 July a huge wave smashed into the side of the yacht. It started to sink. The men had time only to grab two tins of food and to get into an open boat before the Mignonette sank. The four unlucky sailors found themselves in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, 1,600 miles from land, with only a few tinned vegetables to keep them alive. After three days, the hungry men managed to catch a turtle. This provided them with food and drink, but nine days later that was all gone. Still 1,000 miles from land, with no food and only the occasional drop of rainwater to drink, the sailors became desperate. The Captain wrote in a letter to his wife that, if no ship should come, 'we must soon die... I am sorry I ever started such a trip...' There was, however, one chance of survival, at least for three of the crew, for a few more days. Someone would have to become food for the others. The Captain suggested that they draw lots to decide which of them should be killed, but Stephens and Brooks objected. 'if we are to die,' they said, 'we should all die together'. Young Richard Parker, lying hardly conscious in the bottom of the boat, said nothing.

After two more days without food and water, the Captain convinced Stephens that one of them ought to be sacrificed to save the others, and that the obvious candidate was Richard Parker. He was an orphan, had no wife or family, and was already on the brink of death. He woke from his coma only occasionally to drink sea-water which was making him even more ill. They knew their little boat was drifting towards the shipping lanes. They might sight a ship any day - or they might not. They agreed that if no help came to them by the next day, then they would kill the boy. None came. Seamen Brooks wanted no part in the killing. While he covered himself with a jacket at the end of the boat, Dudley and Stephens knelt over the unconscious Parker.

'Richard, my boy,' whispered the Captain, 'your time has come. Stephens stood ready to hold the boy's feet but there was no need. He was too ill to struggle as the Captain took out a pocket-knife and plunged it into the boy's neck, killing him instantly. All three men drank the blood and ate Richard's heart and liver for the next three days. On the fourth day, they were sighted by a German ship, the Montezuma. The three men were very weak. The First-mate and Captain needed to be hauled on board by rope.

The men landed in England on 7 September. Dudley, Stephens and Brooks went straight to the authorities and explained the reasons for the death of the boy."

* Ask the class in their groups to answer the following questions:

- Do you think the three men did anything wrong?

- Should they have been charged with a crime?

- Should they all be charged with the same crime?

* Now read the next part of the story to the class:

"Incidents like this had happened before, and so Dudley, Stephens and Brooks were very surprised when they were immediately charged with murder - although the charge against Seaman Brooks was later dropped. There was a lot of public interest in the story as it was reported in detail by the newspapers. Money was collected to pay for lawyers to defend the men in court. At the trial, everyone agreed about the facts of the case, but the jury were faced with a difficult task. They sympathised with the three men, and would have liked to agree that it was not wrong for someone to kill another to save his or her own life. But they did recognize that to kill someone intentionally who was not threatening your own life must be murder. The judge offered the jury a way out of this problem by allowing them to take the unusual step of a 'special verdict'. In this, the jury stated the facts of the case, but left a panel of five judges to decide whether Dudley and Stephens were guilty of murder."

* Ask the class in their groups to answer the following questions:

- If you were one of the five judges, would you find Dudley and Stephens guilty or not guilty of murder?

- Why?

- If they are guilty, how should they be punished?

* Now tell the class what happened:

"The court passed a verdict of murder on Dudley and Stephens. The sentence for murder was death, but in this case it was changed to six months imprisonment. By the standards of the time, and compared with the treatment given to other sailors in a similar position, this was still thought by many to be severe."


* Richard Parker's right to life was violated. What about the right to life of the other men in the boat?

* What would you have done? Would you die rather than kill someone else?

* This story happened 64 years before the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was made. Does this make any difference to Richard Parker's right to life?

* Some people argue that there are "natural" laws and rights which have always existed, and which are common-sense and fair. For example, the right to be free would be a "natural" right. Do you agree that with this idea?

* What other things, apart from life itself, do you think we might have a "natural" right to? Make a list and compare it with the rights in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.


* What if the men had not told the authorities that they killed the boy? Ask students to make a play, stories, poems, or imaginary letters in which they imagine that they are the three men ten years after the story. How would they feel about what they did? Would they feel guilty? Why/Why not?

* How would you react if you were a friend of Richard Parker?

* As a project, students could make a survey of their friends and family, asking

" What do you think are your natural rights? " The resulting data could be collated and used for discussion or as the basis for maths work, for example, by displaying it as a pie chart.

Irina's Story

Aim: This case study about someone whose rights were systematically violated aims to improve students' knowledge about human rights violations and to develop the attitude that violations can be opposed by ordinary people.

Learning point:

- Individuals and especially groups of people can act to successfully oppose human rights violations.

What you need:

- Irina's Story from pages 129 and 130.

- Simplified Version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights from page 163.

- Information about prisoners of conscience.

Time: About one hour

How to do it:

* Ask the class to quickly think of all the reasons why a government might legitimately imprison someone. For example, for murder, robbery, etc. Write these down on the wall. Don't spend more than five minutes on this part.

* Read, or ask the students to read, the Information about prisoners of conscience from page 130.

* Read, or ask the students to read, Irina's story from pages 129 and 130.

* Form the class into groups of five or six. Give each group a copy of the simplified version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights from page 163. Ask them to find which of Irina's rights under the Universal Declaration of Human Rights were violated (if you are not able to copy the Declaration, read each the rights out one by one and ask the class whether Irina had that right violated).

* If some groups finish quickly, ask them to identify the methods which the Milwaukee Amnesty International group used to get Irina released.

* Use the questions below to start a discussion about Irina's case.


* Do you think it was correct to imprison Irina? Why? / Why not?

* Which of Irina's rights were violated? What do you think the authorities were trying to do by treating her like this?

* The people from the human rights organisation Amnesty International did not know Irina personally, and were not from her country. Why do you think they cared about what was happening to her?

* What effect, if any, do you think the actions of these people had on the Soviet government, the US government, and Irina? Why?

* The authorities who imprisoned Irina, and other governments which have abused human rights, use the argument that enemies of the state forfeit their human rights when they act against the state. The preamble of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights says that we all have "equal and inalienable rights". Who do you think is right? Why? Why is this important?

* How would you like the world to react if you were put in prison unfairly?


* For older children, use the standard, unsimplified version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in this activity.

* As an action, ask older students to write a poem from the point of view of a prisoner in solitary confinement, or to perform Irina's story as a play for the rest of the school.

* Irina wrote poems in soap. Younger children could experiment with writing poems using water on earth, or sticks etc....

Irina's Story

A day after her 29th birthday, on 5 March 1983, Irina Ratushinskaya, a poet from Ukraine, was sentenced to seven years' hard labour and five years of internal exile for anti-Soviet agitation and propaganda. Her sentence was based on five poems, which her husband said were as much to do with politics as is the Lord's Prayer. She had also participated in demonstrations calling for greater governmental respect for human rights.

She was imprisoned in the Small Zone, a special unit for women political prisoners at Barashevo in the Mordvinian Autonomous Republic, in the Russian Federation. The Small Zone had the harshest regime of imprisonment allowed for women under Soviet law.

Irina went on hunger strikes to protest against the unheated cells and lack of proper food and medical attention. She suffered from numerous medical problems, yet her family could neither visit nor send medication. In response to her hunger strikes, Irina was transferred to the punishment facilities at the Yavas prison. Upon arrival, she was beaten unconscious, left overnight in her underwear on the stone floor and was not allowed a prison cot for recuperation. After attempting to bring charges against the wardens who had beaten her, Irina was put in solitary confinement for "pretending to suffer from concussion."

In a book called "Grey is the Colour of Hope", she described her prison life: "All those norms of human behaviour which are inculcated in one from the cradle, are subjected to deliberate and systematic destruction. It's normal to want to be clean? Then take your portion of salted sardelles through the hatch in your cell door with your bare hands! You will not be given plates or knives, not even a sheet of paper to put it on. And then, wipe the fish innards off your hands against your clothes, because you can't have any water! Contract scabies and skin fungus, live in filth, breath the stench of the slopbucket, then you'll regret your misdemeanours! Women are prone to modesty? All the more reason to strip them naked during searches, and when they're taken to the bathhouse while under investigation, a whole group of leering and jeering KGB officers will enter 'by chance'... a normal person is repelled by coarseness and lies? You shall encounter such an amount of both, that you will have to strain all your inner resources to remember that there is, there is another reality!"

In 1983, Irina's case was taken up by the human rights organisation Amnesty International, which began to campaign for Irina's release. The Amnesty International Group in Milwaukee, USA, organized a major campaign to publicize Irina's plight in magazine and newspaper articles and radio interviews, including an interview with Voice of America which was broadcast many times into the USSR. They sent petitions and postcards about Irina to Soviet officials and tried to get the assistance of US officials, including the President. They also contacted Irina's husband and mother-in-law.


Irina's Story continued...

In 1985, Amnesty International found that Irina had been transferred to an unknown location. The Milwaukee group organized a sold-out concert for Irina's birthday and International Women's Day. At the concert, her poems were read aloud by a famous poet, and descriptions of her case and letter writing instructions were given to the audience.

By 1986, Irina's case had become well known. Senator Edward Kennedy discussed the case with Secretary General Mikhail Gorbachev on his visit to the USSR. A hunger strike supporting Irina was held in England, and in Israel, Amnesty groups distributed brochures about Irina. Students in Denver, Colorado, held a birthday party for Irina and wrote to her every day. Irina was finally released early on October 9, 1986. The Soviet authorities also allowed her to travel abroad for medical treatment. Irina was forbidden to write poetry in prison and was denied paper and things for writing. However, she scratched poems into a large bar of soap in her cell, memorized them, then washed them away. She wrote 300 poems in this way. The poems were later published after her arrival in the West.

Information about Prisoners of Conscience

Prisoners of conscience are men, women and children detained for their beliefs, colour, sex, ethnic origin, language or religion who have neither used nor advocated violence.

All over the world, hundreds of thousands of people are in prison, not because they are criminals, but for what they believe in. They are often held without trial, or after a secret trial, or a trial carried out in their absence. Such imprisonments are against the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Many prisoners of conscience have their freedom taken away for disagreeing peacefully with their government.

What's fair? - activities about justice

These activities about justice use the discrimination faced by women and minorities as a way to examine everyday injustice.

The aim is to show that large numbers of people are unfairly denied their human rights in everyday situations, and that this should be opposed and overcome.

These activities build on those for younger children on pages 79 - 84.

Vesna's Story (Adapted from p.16 of Understand the Law 1995, The Citizenship Foundation)

Aim: This case study about racial discrimination aims to explore issues of justice and human rights.

Learning point:

- Discrimination, including racial discrimination, is a violation of human rights.

Time: About an hour and a half

What you need: A copy of the Simplified Version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (from page 163) for each group.

How to do it:

* Form the class into small groups of five or six.

* Explain to the class that many countries have laws against unfair discrimination on the grounds of race or sex. Also the Universal Declaration of Human Rights contains articles against discrimination.

* Ask the class in their groups to look at different parts of the simplified version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights to find which are the relevant articles against discrimination. (Note: Almost every article is relevant in some way.)

* After ten minutes, go round the class, and ask each group to tell the class about an article they think is relevant. Ask them justify their choice by giving a practical example of how that article counters discrimination.

* Read out Vesna's Story:

Vesna is a Roma woman. This is her story.

"I saw a job for a sales assistant advertised in the window of a clothes shop. They wanted someone between 18 and 23. I'm 19, so I went in and asked about the job but was told by the manageress to come back in two days because not enough people had applied.

I returned twice, and was always told the same thing. Nearly a week later I went back to the shop. The job advertisement was still in the window. The manageress was too busy to see me, but I was told that the vacancy had been filled.

After I left the shop, I was so upset that I asked a non-Roma friend if she would go in and ask about the job. When she came out she said that she had been asked to come for an interview on Monday."

* Now read out the manageress's response:

"I felt that Vesna would find it difficult to work here, because of the distance that she would have to travel in to work each day. It would be an eight-mile journey on two buses. It makes it very difficult to run the shop if staff are always late. I'd much prefer to appoint someone from this area.

The person to whom I offered the job seemed just right."

* Ask the class in their groups to decide:

- Do you think Vesna was discriminated against? Why?

- If so, what do you think the shop should have to do?

- What could Vesna do about this situation? Do you think her non-Roma friends should help her to get justice? How?

* Now tell the class what happened:

"Vesna took her case to a special European court which enforces the law about discrimination. The court agreed that she had been discriminated against. Several other people who lived far away from the shop had been interviewed. The girl who got the job was only 16, white, and lived the same distance from the shop as Vesna. The shop had to give Vesna some money for the injury to her feelings."


* Vesna was unfairly discriminated against because of her ethnicity. The manageress didn't really know anything about her. Which groups of people are discriminated against in your country? Why? Do you agree with this discrimination?

* Do you know anything about these groups? Do you think this knowledge is accurate?

* "Ignorance encourages prejudice and makes discrimination possible". Do you agree with this statement?


* As an action, ask the class to write stories, poems, a play or make cartoons/pictures about a time when they felt unfairly discriminated against. For example, because of their sex or age. What would it be like to be discriminated against all the time? If the students agree, display these in the classroom.

* As a project (see page 30) students could study a group in your country which is discriminated against, focussing on the question "Is this discrimination justified?"

She doesn't work

Aim: This project activity aims to draw students' attention to discrimination against women and to encourage them to challenge it.

Learning point:

- Discrimination against women is a violation of human rights.

What you need:

- Simplified Version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights from page 163.

- Text "She doesn't work" from page 136.

- Advice on project work from page 30.

- Blackboard or large piece of paper

Time: Two lessons and homework

How to do it:

* Read, or ask the students to read the text "She doesn't work".

* With the whole class, make a quick list of all the jobs which the wife has to do.

* Now brainstorm reasons why the husband doesn't think his wife "works". Encourage the class to think of as many reasons as possible why the husband might think like this. For example, it might be because she is unpaid, or because he thinks his work is harder. (for advice about brainstorming see page 27. Spend about five minutes on this part.

* Now, brainstorm reasons why the wife's responsibilities are work. For example, her longer working day. Spend about five minutes on this part.

* Tell the students that Articles 1 and 2 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, or it's summary, specifically mention sexual equality. Read these articles - either the full or simplified versions. (See Part Five of this manual).

* Ask the students to form pairs. Each pair should make a list of all the work which has to be done in and around their home.

* After five minutes, go around the pairs, asking for one item from each pair's list until there are no more suggestions. Write all the suggestions up on the wall.

* Ask the students to form groups of four or five. Ask each group to write their own questionnaire about household work. The aim of the questionnaires is to find out about housework in their own area. They will need to phrase the questions in such a way as to find out as much as possible about the subject from the people they interview. They could include questions such as:

- Who makes the meals in your house?

- Do men and children help around your house?

- How long does housework take?

- Do the women have other jobs to do in addition?

Each questionnaire will probably be different. Alternatively, the class could work together to make one questionnaire.

* Allow a week for students to make a survey about housework in the community, using their questionnaires. Remind them to question both men and women!

* After the survey has been done, have a report-back lesson. This could be done as a mathematical analysis of the survey answers, or a verbal report, or as a quick Talking-Stick exercise (see page 68 for advice about this method), where each student is allowed to say one thing which they discovered through the survey.

* During or after the report-back, use the following questions to help students to analyze their results:


* Did you discover anything surprising?

* How did you feel about what you found?

* Did your discoveries change the way you think about the work women do? Why/ Why not?

* Did you discover any tasks which could only be done by men?

* Did you discover any tasks which could only be done by women?

* Boys, would you like to do all the work that women do? Why/ Why not?

* Is it right for women to have to do all this work?

* What can we do in this classroom, or in our homes, to treat each other more equally? Which tasks could be done by men or women? Which tasks could be done together?


* As a project, ask the class to work out how many hours there are in each week and then to calculate for their family how much time each person spends sleeping, working, relaxing, playing, and so on. The results could be made into a statistical chart, or calculated as percentages. Then ask questions like those listed above to draw the student's attention to the burden of housework which women carry, and maybe the differences between boy's and girl's lives. It is likely that the girls will have less leisure time than the boys. Concentrate on examining whether the students think the present situation is fair.

She doesn't work

"Have you many children?" the Doctor asked.

"Sixteen born, but only nine live," he answered.

"Does your wife work?"

"No, she stays at home."

"I see. How does she spend her day?"

"Well, she gets up at four in the morning, fetches water and wood, makes the fire and cooks breakfast. Then she goes to the river and washes clothes. After that she goes to town to get corn ground and buy what we need in the market. Then she cooks the midday meal."

"You come home at midday?"

"No, no. She brings the meal to me in the fields, about three kilometres from home."

"And after that?"

"Well she takes care of hens and pigs. And of course she looks after the children all day. Then she prepares supper so that it is ready when I come home."

"Does she go to bed after supper?"

"No, I do. She has things to do around the house until nine o'clock."

"But you say your wife doesn't work?"

"No. I told you. She stays at home."

Advantages and disadvantages (Adapted from Amnesty International USA HRE Resource Notebook: Women's rights)

Aim: This activity helps students to examine their own attitudes and perceptions about the differences between the way men and women are treated in society.

Learning point:

- Discrimination against women is a violation of human rights.

What you need: The Simplified Version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Pens and paper

Time: One hour

How to do it:

* Ask the class to form small groups of males and females. Ideally, there will be an equal number of male and female groups. Explain that each group will be asked to make a list and that this will be used for a discussion.

* Ask each group of males to make a list of the advantages and disadvantages of being female. Females do the same for males. Allow ten minutes for this.

* The lists should have an equal number of advantages and disadvantages.

* Now pair each group of males with a group of females. Each female group reports its list to a male group and responds to the male group's reactions.

* Now each male group reports its list to a female group and responds to the female group's reactions.

* If necessary, use the following questions to start a discussion.


* Was it easy to think of the advantages and disadvantages of being a male or female? Why? Why not?

* Did you find yourselves listing things which could be called sexist?

* Do you thing those sorts of generalisations about people are realistic? Do they apply to the people you know?

* Was it a useful activity? Why? Did you learn anything that you didn't know before?


* This activity can also be used to examine other differences apart from gender, such as ethnicity, social class, religion...

My rights / Your rights - activities about situations where rights conflict

These activities use imaginary situations to help students to understand that where one persons' rights end and the rights of the next person begin, conflicts can occur. In the game 'What now', students must cooperate to find solutions to these situations where rights conflict.

These activities build on those for younger children on pages 85 - 90.

What Now?

(Adapted from p.19 of Understand the Law 1994, The Citizenship Foundation)

Aim: This exciting game teaches two important lessons:

- That tensions can exist between the needs of the community as a whole and the rights of the individual.

- That to solve this tension (and other tensions in society) it is important to discuss carefully to reach an agreement with which as everyone is happy.

Learning points:

- Sometimes people are in situations where their rights come into conflict.

- These conflicts are best solved by open discussion.

Time: About one hour

What you need:

- The story "The crash on Mobius" from page 141

- The gameboard from page 145

- The problem cards from pages 141 - 144

(You will need one copy of the gameboard and one set of problems for every four students in the class. Either ask the students to copy them by hand, or photocopy them.)

How to do it:

* Ask the class to form groups of about four.

* Give each group a copy of the gameboard from page 145 and a set of the problems from pages 141 - 144. Each problem must be on a separate piece of paper

. * Read the story "The crash on Mobius" from page 141.

* Read out the following rules of the game:


* Mix the problem cards together and put them face down on the table.

* Lift up one problem at a time. Read out the problem. Each problem has two options: 'A' or 'B'. Your group MUST choose one of these options.

* As each decision is made, colour in the relevant part of the gameboard, starting at the bottom and moving up towards the rescue beacon at the top. If you make an 'A' decision, colour in ONE square. If you make a 'B' decision colour in TWO squares.

* Only move on to the next problem when you have finished with the last one.

* Although 'B' choices score higher than 'A' choices, you must not choose B answers just to move faster. Always do what the group thinks is right, even if this slows you down.

* You don't have to finish on the exact number of squares.

* When your group reaches the rescue beacon, count how many moves you made. Enter the total of 'A' and 'B' moves in the box at the bottom of the gameboard.

* The students now play the game. Watch to make sure that they understand the rules, but do not interfere unless absolutely necessary.

* Some groups will finish more quickly than others. Ask these groups to discuss the questions below until the others are finished.

* When all the groups have finished, ask the groups for their scores, then read the following text.

What sort of group were you?

"8-10 moves: Your decisions have helped the whole group quickly reach the beacon but some people might have been lost on the way.

11-13 moves: You have tried to move the group on as quickly as possible but you haven't ignored the needs of certain members of the group.

14-16 moves: You have put the wishes of the individual members of the group before the needs of the whole group. This has meant that the journey has taken longer."

* Now look back at the aim of the game, then ask the following questions to draw out the important lessons of the game.


* Was it difficult to make some decisions in your group? Which ones? Why?

* Were some decisions easier than others? Why? Were there some decisions that most of the class agreed upon? Were there some decisions that your group could not decide about? Were some people in your group more forceful in their opinions? Did everyone have a chance to say their opinion? Did you ever resort to voting to make a decision?

* The problems were all about individual and group rights. Which rights were involved? (Students can identify the relevant parts of the Simplified Version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights from page 163.)

* Many of the problems from the game also occur in real life. For example, about sharing money. The group of survivors was like a mini version of our own society. How are decisions like these made in real life? Do you think these ways of making decisions are fair? Do they result in "good" agreements? What is a "good" agreement? How else could decisions be made?


* Every one of the problems is a starting-point for a big discussion. Several are related to issues such as abortion, disability, power, global distribution of wealth...Students could examine the real-life parallel of one of the imaginary Situation Cards as a project (see page 30).

* Ask the class to make a play, poem, story or painting about one of the problem situations. For example, they could pretend that they are the mother from Problem Five. How does she feel? What is she thinking?

* Imagine that your group decided to stay on the planet. Based on the problems, what sort of rules could you have to protect the rights of the poor, the sick and the old? How would these rules be agreed and enforced?

The crash on Mobius

The Cosmic Holiday's Spacecruiser Voyager on the way from Earth to the holiday planet of Funfaria has run into a meteorite storm. The craft has been severely damaged and all communications systems are destroyed before a distress signal can be sent. The pilot has managed to crash-land on Mobius, the nearest planet.

The planet is almost unexplored but the survivors of the crashed ship know that it has an oxygen atmosphere similar to that of earth and that past travellers installed a rescue beacon at Mobius's Northern pole. Unfortunately, the spacecraft has crashed near the opposite pole. The journey to the beacon could take months.

You are amongst the large group of survivors who are beginning the journey to the beacon. You have managed to salvage some food and supplies but, as you travel, a number of situations arise which you have to solve together. If the problems are not solved quickly, the whole group may suffer and you may never reach the beacon.

"What Now" Problems:

Problem One

One member of the group enjoys singing. Unfortunately, she sings all the time. Some people don't mind but a few say it's making them mad. Do you:

a. Do nothing and allow her to sing whenever she wants to?

b. Demand that she stops singing when others are near by?

Problem Two

A few people who were injured in the landing are slowing things down. you fear that you may not make it to the beacon before your food runs out. Do you:

a. Slow down to their pace and risk the lives of everyone?

b. Leave them, possibly to die?

Problem Three

There are disagreements about who should lead the group. It is wasting a lot of time giving everyone a chance to speak. Do you:

a. Keep the system in which everyone has the chance to say their opinion?

b. Vote for one leader who can take decisions quickly?

Problem Four

Members of one family with a badly disabled child claim that they can't look after her properly. The child is suffering. Do you:

a. Provide the family with an extra person to help them?

b. Do nothing. Leave the family to sort out its own problem?

Problem Five

A baby is born to one of the group. It is ill, and will probably die if moved. Do you:

a. Hold up the group until mother and child can travel?

b. Carry on and hope that the baby survives?

Problem Six

An old lady dies. It is discovered that she was carrying a large amount of money which her daughter claims is now hers. Do you:

a. Allow the daughter to keep the money?

b. Make her hand over the money, so she can't use it to buy unfair amounts of rations?

Problem Seven

The group finds a pond containing a pale green liquid. the liquid has the effect of making people feel happy people, but some people are drinking too much which makes them lazy. Do you:

a. Allow them to drink it?

b. Ban all drinking of the pond water?

Problem Eight

A 14-year-old is behaving very badly, disrupting the progress of the group. His parents can't control him but refuse to let anyone else try. Do you:

a. Respect the parent's wishes?

b. Put the child with another family?

Problem Nine

One of the leaders of the group has become ill and needs a blood transfusion. Several people have the same blood group but no-one wants to volunteer, for the fear of infection. Do you:

a. Allow people to refuse if they want to?

b. Force people to give blood?

Problem Ten

One person is always criticising the way the group is being led. His comments are affecting the attitudes of others. Do you:

a. Allow him to continue?

b. Tell him to keep quiet and separate him from the others?

Problem Eleven

One member of the group is refusing to carry out the tasks given to her. She says there is no point - they are all doomed. She is very depressed. Do you:

a. Leave her alone and let her do want she wants?

b. Threaten to punish her if she doesn't work?

Problem Twelve

An elderly couple, who feel the are holding the group back, volunteer to be left behind. Do you:

a. Help them to cope with the travel?

b. Accept the offer?

Problem Thirteen

You discover that the person you have put in charge of the food stores has spent six years in prison for theft. Until now he has been doing a very good job. Do you:

a. Trust him and let him carry on with the work?

b. Take no chances and put someone else in charge of the food?

Problem Fourteen

There is an argument between two members of the group. They plan to have a fight tonight. Do you:

a. Let them fight?

b. Stop the fight in case others join in?

Problem Fifteen

The weather on the planet is very cold. Some of the passengers lost their warm clothing when the spaceship crashed. Do you:

a. Allow people to keep their own clothes, as sooner or later things will start to wear out?

b. Make everyone share out clothing equally?

Problem Sixteen

Someone has been stealing. A woman is caught taking money from a bag. Do you:

a. Punish her for one crime you know she has committed?

b. Punish her very severely to make an example of her?

Refugee roleplay

Aim: This activity uses a roleplay where refugees and border officials express different points of view on the rights of refugees to increase students' knowledge about refugee rights.

Learning point:

- Refugees are a specially vulnerable group who have specific rights.

What you need:

- "Immigration officers' arguments and options" from page 148

- "Refugees' arguments and options" from page 149

- Information about refugees from page 149

Time: One hour

How to do it:

* Start with a brainstorm to find out what students think about refugees. Write the word "refugee" on the wall, and ask the class to say the first things which the word makes them think of. (The advice on brainstorming from page 27 may be helpful here).

* Read the Information about refugees from page 149 to the class to introduce the subject.

* Consulting the advice on using roleplay from page 24, help the class to play the following roleplay.

* Read out the following scenario (if you wish, you can invent imaginary names for countries X and Y):

"It is a dark, cold and wet night on the border between X and Y. A column of refugees has arrived, fleeing from the war in X. They want to cross into Y. They are hungry, tired and cold. They have no money, and no documents except their passports. The immigration officials from country Y have different points of view - some want to allow the refugees to cross, but others don't. The refugees are desperate, and use several arguments to try to persuade the immigration officials."

* Ask one third of the class to imagine that they are the immigration officers from country Y. Give this group the "Immigrations officers' arguments and options" from page 148.

* Ask another third of the class to imagine that they are refugees. Give this group the "Refugees' arguments and options" from page 149.

* Tell the players that they can use the arguments on their cards and any other relevant arguments they can think of. If it helps, draw a line along the floor to symbolise the border. Tell them that when the roleplay begins, they have ten minutes to reach some sort of conclusion, which may be one of the options listed, or another solution.

* It is up to you and the class to decide whether the "refugees" and the "immigration officers" will put their arguments as a group, or whether they will individually take responsibility for putting individual arguments.

* Ask the remaining third of the class to act as observers. (Half can monitor the "immigration officers", and half can monitor the "refugees".)

* Give the "refugees" and the "immigration officers" a few minutes before the roleplay to read through their arguments and options and to decide on tactics.

* Start the roleplay. Use your own judgement about when to stop.

* After the roleplay, discuss it using the following questions. This is important to draw out the points which the students learnt.


* How did the situation work out? What happened?

* How did it feel to be a refugee?

* How did it feel to be an immigration officer?

* Refugees have a right to protection under the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees. Were these refugees given their right to protection? Why/why not?

* Do you think that a country should have the right to turn away refugees?

* Would you do this yourself? What if you knew they faced death in their own country?


* If there is time, play the roleplay again, but the students who were immigration officers must now be refugees.

* The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) is responsible for protecting the rights of refugees. Ask the class in groups to pretend that they are an official team sent by UNHCR to help the refugees from country X. Ask the students to write an official report including the following issues:

- What arguments could you use to persuade the immigration officers to let the refugees in?

- Are the immigration officers doing anything wrong?

- Are any of the articles of the Human Rights Documents in Part Five of this manual relevant?

- What could be done with this report to make country Y protect the rights of the refugees?

* As a project (see page 30), refugees in your country could be useful resources for your students to find out more about the problems of securing rights as a refugee. (See page 36 for advice about how to interview someone with a class.)

* Ask students to write an imaginative account of the scene at the border. The account could be from the point of view of a refugee child.

* As an action, students could gather essential items and deliver them to refugees who are sheltering in your country.

Immigration officers' arguments and options:

You can use these arguments and any others you can think of:

* They are desperate, we can't send them back.

* If we will send them back we will be responsible if they are arrested, tortured or killed.

* We have legal obligations to accept refugees.

* They have no money, and will need state support. Our country cannot afford that.

* Can they prove that they are genuine refugees? Maybe they are just here to look for a better standard of living?

* Our country is a military and business partner of country X. We can't be seen to be protecting them.

* Maybe they have skills which we need?

* There are enough refugees in our country. We need to take care of our own people. They should go to the richer countries.

* If we let them in, others will also demand entry.

* They don't speak our language, they have a different religion and they eat different food. They won't integrate.

* They will bring political trouble.

Before the roleplay, think about the following options:

* Will you let all of the refugees across the border?

* Will you let some across the border?

* Will you split them up by age, profession, wealth...?

* Will you do something else instead?

Refugees' arguments and options:

You can use these arguments and any others you can think of:

* It is our right to receive asylum.

* Our children are hungry, you have a moral responsibility to help us.

* We will be killed if we go back.

* We have no money.

* We can't go anywhere else.

* I was a doctor in my home town.

* We only want shelter until it is safe to return.

* Other refugees have been allowed into your country.

Before the roleplay, think about the following options:

* Will you split up if the immigration officers ask you to?

* Will you go home if they try to send you back?

Information about refugees

Every year tens of thousands of people have leave their homes and often their countries because of persecution or war. These people become refugees. They nearly always have to move suddenly, leaving their possessions behind, tearing families apart. Many are never able to return to their homes. In 1992 there were almost 19 million refugees in the world.

Most refugees seek safety in a neighbouring country. Others have to travel great distances to find safety. Refugees often arrive at airports and sea ports far from their native land, asking for entry.

In 1951, the United Nations adopted the Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees. More than half of the countries in the world have agreed with the Convention. They give protection to refugees and agree not to force them to return to their country to risk persecution or death. Article 33 of the Convention says: "No Contracting State shall expel or return a refugee in any manner whatsoever to the frontiers of territories where his life or freedom would be threatened on account of his race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion."


Information about refugees continued...

This also applies if a government wants to send a refugee to another country from which the refugee might be sent home. Also, governments must hear the claim of a refugee who wants to find safety (seek asylum) in their country. This principle applies to all states, whether or not they are party to the 1951 Convention.

According to the Convention, a refugee is someone who has left their country and is unable to return because of a real fear of being persecuted because of their race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group, or political opinion.

The 1951 Convention also says that refugees should be free from discrimination and should receive their full rights in the country where they go to be safe. Also, many articles of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights protect refugees. However, countries disagree about who is a "genuine" refugee. The media and politicians often demand limits on the number of refugees, saying that they cause racial tension, and shortages of housing and jobs.

In recent years the governments of many of the world's richest countries have reduced the number of refugees they allow in, for two reasons. First, air travel has become cheaper, meaning that more refugees from developing countries want to enter developed countries. Second, the world economic downturn has reduced the need for large workforces. This means that refugees who used to come as migrant workers now have to apply for refugee status.

To justify restrictions on refugees, rich countries often say that refugees are not victims of oppression, but just want a better standard of living. They call them "economic migrants". To protect the rights of refugees the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) based in Geneva, was established by the UN General Assembly on 14 December 1950.

Governments often argue that refugee's fears are exaggerated or untrue. Refugees are protected from this argument by organisations who use evidence of human rights violations in the refugee's country to persuade the government to let them apply for asylum.

Action! - taking human rights beyond the classroom

These activities help students to think of human rights as something which they are able to defend and fight for, wherever they live. There are also suggestions for action in the "Choices" parts of many of the activities in the preceding pages.

These activities build on those for younger children on pages 91 - 93.

The Power of Action

Aim: This case study about a famous human rights campaigner aims to show the power of action by giving an example of someone who acted successfully to obtain their rights.

Learning point:

- Individuals, and especially groups, can act to successfully oppose human rights violations.

What you need: Mahatma Gandhi's Story from page 153.

Time: About half an hour

How to do it:

* Read, or ask the students to read, Gandhi's story.

* Use the questions below to start a discussion (the advice on discussion from page 28 may be helpful here).


* The Indians protested without violence. Why do you think this was?

* If they had protested violently, for example, by killing British soldiers, what do you think the British would have done? Do you think many Indians would have died too?

* Gandhi asked for "world sympathy in this battle of Right against Might". Do you think that the other people of the world would have been so sympathetic if the Indians had attacked the British? Why?

* Do you think that peaceful protest was the right choice in this case? What about other cases? For example, in your own country?


* Give the class an example of a person or a group from your own country who acted to obtain their rights. As a project (see page 30) students could research this person or group and make a poster picture, story or play to show what they found out.

Mahatma Gandhi's Story

The Mahatma (Great Soul) gave a new meaning to non-violence. He said that anything gained through violence was not worth having.

Born Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi in Gujarat, India in 1869, he qualified as a lawyer in England before practising in South Africa. There he experienced racial discrimination for the first time. There were laws to stop people without white skin from doing many things, such as becoming a lawyer or travelling in the first class compartments of trains. Gandhi saw that many black people in South Africa were poor and they were treated badly by the whites. He organized protests and went to prison fighting against injustice.

From the beginning of his life as a protester Gandhi was directed by his deep religious convictions. He believed that violence was always wrong.

Gandhi returned to India in 1915. There was a great poverty among the Indians too. The British were ruling India harshly, taking taxes that the people could not afford, preventing Indians from ruling their own country, discouraging their industry and using force to control the people.

In 1930 Gandhi chose an issue to protest about that at first did not worry the British because it seemed so minor - the tax on salt. Salt can be taken from sea water but in India all salt was made and sold by British government who made money out of it. Gandhi said that the salt belonged to India and that he would break this law.

First, he asked to discuss the issue with the head of the British government in India the Viceroy. The Viceroy refused, thinking it was unimportant. Then, on 12 March 1930, when he was sixty years old, Gandhi set out with his followers to march 322 kilometres from his home to the sea to make salt. For twenty-four days the people of India and the rest of the world followed his progress. The anticipation was intense. On 6 April, with thousands of onlookers Gandhi walked into the sea and picked up a handful of salt. This act of defiance was a signal to the nation. All along the coast of India people made salt illegally. He wrote, "I want world sympathy in this battle of Right against Might." A month later Gandhi was arrested and tens of thousands had been put in prison.

Gandhi and the people of India spent many years protesting before the British finally left. They continued to march, to refuse to cooperate, and to stretch British resources by allowing themselves to be imprisoned.

Finally India achieved success in 1947 when the British gave up their rule and India became independent.

Action Roleplays

Aim: This roleplay activity aims to encourage children to apply their rights in real situations.

Learning point:

- Human rights violation occur in everyday situations and can be opposed by everyday people.

What you need:

- Simplified version of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, from page 163. (enough for one copy per four or five students - these can be hand-copied).

- Advice on using roleplay from page 24.

- Roleplay situations from page 155.

Time: One and a half hours

How to do it:

* Ask the class to divide into small groups of three or four. Read out roleplay One and ask the class to identify the articles of the Simplified Universal Declaration of Human Rights which are relevant to it. Below are some likely answers, but this list is not exhaustive. Allow five to ten minutes for this.

* Repeat for roleplays Two and Three.

In roleplay One, the most relevant articles are:

Article two, articles six and seven, and article thirteen.

In roleplay Two, the most relevant articles are:

Article twenty and article twenty-three.

In roleplay Three, the most relevant articles are:

Articles nineteen and twenty, and article twenty-four.

* Now re-arrange the class into three groups, and give each group one of the roleplay situations. Ask each group to roleplay their situation, with their own ending. They will need to decide who will play each role, and how to play the end of the situation. (For step-by-step advice on how to run roleplays, see the advice on page 24)

* Ask each group in turn to play their roleplay for the whole class. After each roleplay performance, ask the players how it felt, then ask the whole class to think of other possible endings. Encourage them to think about ways in which the people in the situations could prevent their rights being violated.


* If the class is small, or there is a lack of time, a few students could perform one roleplay for the whole class.


One: Ida wants to cross the border into the neighbouring country to visit her daughter, who has married someone from that country. The border officials refuse to let her in. They say that she is too poor to pay for a hotel in their country.

Two: Ivan is a cleaner in car wash company. In the winter his hands are hurt by pieces of ice. His boss said he will not buy gloves for Ivan because they are very expensive. Ivan can't afford to buy them for himself. He asks his Union to help. When his boss finds out, Ivan loses his job.

Three: The last park in town is going to be made into a carpark. Ten people from the neighbourhood demonstrate peacefully in the park, saying they need a place to relax and for their children to play in. The Police come and say that they are not allowed to demonstrate and that they should go home. The demonstrators sit down on the ground and refuse to move. The police move them by force, hurting some of them.