METHOD 17: Journal Writing

Having participants write down their reactions, opinions, and ideas before a discussion not only raises the level of discourse, but also provides them with a written record of their evolving ideas about human rights. Journal writing also reinforces the value of independent, critical thinking. For some participants a journal provides an outlet to express thoughts and emotions too personal to bring up for open discussion.

• Provide enough time for journal writing (10 minutes minimum) at regular intervals (e.g., end of a discussion or activity);

• Never require anyone to read from or show the journal;

• If a participants chooses to read from a journal, no one should criticize the opinion expressed.

A Collective/Community Journal: Invite participants to contribute entries from their journals to a group journal, either reproduced and given to each participant or mounted on a group bulletin board. These may be anonymous.

Examples of Method:

The Human Rights Education Handbook: "Model 2: One-day Workshop," p. 120; "Model 3: Three-day Workshop," p. 121; "Model 5: Five-day

Workshop," p. 126.