Roots: Parents, communities,
and governments that work for and support
human rights for children support the
"best interests of the child."
They promote the "development of
the child's personality, talents and
mental and physical abilities to their
fullest potential" and respect
for human rights and fundamental freedoms.
They prepare the child for "life
in a free society in the spirit of understanding,
peace, tolerance, equality of sexes
and friendship among all peoples."
Governments provide assistance to parents
when necessary and ensure that children
have adequate care when parents, or
others charged with that responsibility,
don't provide it (CRC Articles 3, 18,
- experience giving care and receiving
care from others;
- practice sharing and taking turns;
- increase their understanding of
the importance of all people caring
for each other.
- understand some applications of
the United Nations Convention on the
Rights of the Child to their life;
- discover and learn about attaining
- explore ways they can support children's
learning about rights and responsibilities;
- understand how complete development
in social, physical, cognitive, emotional,
and spiritual aspects ensures best
interests of all children and adults;
- understand the state's role in
assisting parents in caring for their
- Doll clothes, soapy warm water,
- Poster-board, scissors, glue, clear
contact paper, a variety of magazine
pictures depicting children in various
- White coats, stethoscopes, scale,
tape measure, etc.;
- Adaptive equipment, including glasses,
crutches, hearing aids, American Sign
Language Finger Spelling Chart, walkers,
- White and yellow construction paper
cut into daisy petals; markers; glue
sticks and brown or green yarn;
- Janet's Playdough Recipe ingredients,
a saucepan, a wooden spoon, measuring
- Bouquet of daisies for center of
the Community Circle and parent area.
- Parent Education Handouts PE #2a,
- Chart paper and markers or chalkboard
- Standard list of classroom rights
written on chart paper;
- Pencils, name tags, and markers.
Greet each person.
Make sure adults and children get a
Parent/Child Interactive Activities
1. WASH DOLLS AND DOLL CLOTHES (SENSORY)
2. HOMEMADE PUZZLES (MANIPULATIVE,
The pictures of children doing
what children do symbolize the many
ways we play and work to develop
healthy habits for optimal growth
- Parents and children will create
homemade puzzles out of magazine pictures
depicting things children do during
a day (eating, sleeping, bathing,
brushing teeth, visiting the doctor,
reading, and so on).
- Create puzzles by gluing magazine
pictures onto tag board and covering
pictures with contact paper, then
cut into puzzle pieces.
3. HOUSEKEEPING (DRAMATIC PLAY)
This role play allows children
to try out roles in the health care
Set up the area for role play with
adaptive equipment (glasses, crutches,
hearing aides) and health care professional
clothing (white coats, stethoscopes,
and so on). Include a scale and tape
measure to see how children have grown.
4. GROWING DAISIES (CREATIVE ART,
FINE MOTOR SKILLS)
The daisy is a symbol of the
nurturing that a growing child needs.
The blossoms symbolize a person
"blooming" with potential.
Provide paper, daisy petals, yarn
for stems, markers, and glue.
Parents think of what makes a healthy
person and write their thoughts along
the stem of the daisy they are creating.
"Growth" words can be written
in the leaves and along the stem.
These might be the new accomplishments
a child has recently attained. Each
family makes its own daisy.
5. PLAYDOUGH (MANIPULATIVE, SENSORY)
Provides a time for cooperation,
for strengthening small muscles,
and for having fun together. Symbolizes
unity and wholeness and nurturing
Parents and children cooperatively
experiment with the medium of playdough
and produce varied sculptures. Preparation
needed. See below.
JANET'S PLAYDOUGH RECIPE
Combine in a sauce pan:
1 cup flour
1/4 cup salt
1 Tablespoon cream of tartar
Stir or whisk in:
1 cup water
1 Tablespoon oil Food coloring (color
darkens as it cooks)
Cook on medium heat until stiff, like
mashed potatoes. Add and stir or knead
until blended: 1 tablespoon vanilla
or vanilla extract. Store in zip-lock
bag or tightly covered container. This
does not need to be refrigerated.
6. BOOK CORNER (LANGUAGE)
Reading together promotes reading
readiness skills, learning to read,
and enjoyment of books. It also
introduces the concepts of beginning,
middle, and end. When parents read
to their children, both learn more
about themselves and the world and
children gain preparatory reading
Parents and children choose a book
to read together. Here are some selections:
More, More, More Said the Baby,
by Vera B. Williams
On the Day You Were Born, by Deborah
Designed by God So I Must be Special,
by Bonnie Sose
I Like Me, by Nancy Carlson
Owl Babies, by Martin Waddell
The Quilt Story, by Tony Johnson
and Tomie dePaola
1. Transition: Help the children
make the transition to the Community
Circle by speaking to them, touching
them on the shoulder, and singing the
2. "Welcome back, I'm happy to
see all of you." Sing: "If
You're Happy and You Know it."
Invite families to introduce themselves
to the families on either side of them.
3. "Today, our goal is learning
to give care to others and to ourselves
so we can all be the best that we can
be. How many of you took care of a doll-baby
today?. . . What kinds of things did
your doll need? Who else needs those
same things in order to grow strong
and healthy? . . . That's right, all
4. "I brought some daisies for
our circle today, because the daisy
is a symbol of the care and nurturing
that is needed for healthy growth. When
you washed your dolls and doll clothes,
you were caring for and nurturing the
dolls. Do your moms or dads care for
and nurture you? Yes! That's how they
give you healthy roots."
5. Show a real daisy. "This
daisy grew out of a strong, healthy
root. From healthy roots grow strong
healthy flowers. When we have healthy
roots, you and I grow to be strong and
beautiful, like flowers!" Ask the
group to share what they wrote on their
daisies' stems. Discuss their responses
and what they think a child needs for
healthy roots, using the dolls as examples.
6. "When everyone has human rights,
children can grow up healthy. It is
our responsibility to make sure we honor
other's human rights. Remember, with
every right there grows a responsibility.
You were taking responsibility today
when you took such good care of your
dolls. You're honoring your friends
and their rights when you take responsibility
to treat them with kindness."
7. Sing "This Little Light
of Mine," to emphasize growing
strong and healthy. To celebrate rights
and responsibilities, sing as many of
the group's favorite songs as possible.
Repeat the song you sang at the beginning
of the circle, then break into separate
Separate Learning Time
Children's Learning Circle - Session
Preparation: Hang up
a piece of chart paper with a heading,
"Human Rights Agreement."
Just under that heading have two
words: "Right" and "Responsibility."
1. Gather the children near the end
of your time with a circle gathering
2. Choose from the following songs
to begin your circle together: "If
You're Happy and You Know It,"
"Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes,"
"Shake Your Sillies Out,"
3. Remind children of the discussion
they had last week about rights and
4. Make a Human Rights Agreement: "Can
you think of something people need in
order to be the best that they can be?"
Write down their answers under the word,
"Right" on your Human Rights
- "All people have the right
to those things. We can make sure
everyone in this class has their human
rights respected here because we'll
have our Human Rights Agreement to
remind us. Remember when you were
getting hungry and we had snack? We
were respecting our human right to
food. Each of us can learn to protect
our own rights and each other's rights
in this class."
- "When people treat each other
like friends, they are being responsible
and caring for each other's human
rights. Let's think about how we would
act towards a friend or how we might
want a friend to act toward us."
Write these down under "Responsibilities."
When the children seem satisfied with
the answers, add "have fun!"
Read all the rights and responsibilities
on the children's Human Rights Agreement.
- Ask the children if they agree
with everything on the list. If not,
make necessary changes. (Teachers
can have an opinion too!) When all
agree, have the children come and
sign the agreement (make a mark in
their favorite color marker, or write
their name if they are able). Then
say, "Congratulations! You've
made a Human Rights Agreement! We
have made a promise to be responsible
for caring for each other's human
5. Close the circle with more singing.
Parent Education -
Standard list of classroom human rights:
1. We have the right to have our
opinions respected and be listened
to without interruption.
2. We have the right to know what
we say will be kept confidential.
3. We have the right to pass (not
speak if we choose).
1. Greeting: "It's good
to see you again! This is our second
week together! We will be meeting ten
more times. I'd like to give you a handout
on the goals for this class so you can
see what the authors of this curriculum
hope you will learn during our time
together." Distribute Goals for
this Program (Handout
2. "During this session we want
to continue to get to know each other,
learn how this class will be organized,
and create a Human Rights Agreement
for our class. The children will also
make a Human Rights Agreement today,
so you will all have the skills to make
a similar agreement for your home. I
look forward to hearing next week from
any of you who take this action step.
Look in your Action Step Journal in
Session 2 for help doing this at home.
Distribute Family Peace Circles (Handout
PE #2b), will help you be more successful
3. Action Steps and Journaling Report
Who would like to share anything
they learned about rights and responsibilities
from discussion with their child?
Who has anything they would like
to share about action steps?
Who clipped some articles and would
like to share their thoughts?
Who read or has comments about the
4. Creating a Human Rights Agreement
for the Class: "Now let's
develop a Classroom Human Rights Agreement,
regarding how we want to treat others
and be treated when we are together."
Invite participants to review the
above standard list of rights (that
you have on chart paper), and then
ask for suggestions of changes or
additions they feel are necessary.
Everyone must agree to all the items
chosen for the final Human Rights
How do you think a similar agreement
could be useful in your family?
Have you made a family agreement
like this together with members of your
Have you made an agreement together
with your children's input? Or have
you made the rules yourselves?
How does it honor human rights to
make an agreement with everyone's input?"
Do you think your children would
want those rights as well?
6. Comment: "We all have different
points of view. Let's remember that
each of us has the right to have his
or her opinion respected, and let's
see what we can learn from each other.
If we stay open-minded, we will all
learn and our children will benefit
from our deep thinking."
Communicate the following message
in your own words: "As you know,
the title of this class is ‘Raising
Children With Roots, Rights, & Responsibilities.'
If you refer to Handout
#2a, you'll see that the roots
are what we provide to our children
through our love, understanding, and
protection of them. When we honor
our children's human rights, we provide
the roots they need in order to honor
the rights of others and take their
own responsibilities. We are largely
doing this through our role modeling.
We believe that children grow up to
be healthy adults when they are raised
in healthy, loving environments. A
healthy society depends on access
to these rights for all children.
Therefore, all children need to learn
about and experience their rights.
When they receive respectful and humane
treatment, they will be more capable
of behaving in ways that reflect their
own associated responsibilities. That's
why we talked about what makes children
grow up to be healthy when we made
the daisies. That's why we gave our
children affirmations on their rainbow
chains last week."
7. The Daisy Experience:
This activity is designed to help
us understand how people grow to their
fullest potential. "The United
Nations Convention on the Rights of
the Child defines this ‘full potential'
as a basic right and need for all
children. We are going to start out
by exploring what it means to achieve
one's fullest potential and how understanding
potential will help us prepare our
children for the future."
a. Begin by drawing a seed on the
chart paper or chalk board. Invite
parents to copy what you draw and
add their own personal notes if they
wish. Explain as you draw. "Through
the gift of life (represented by the
seed), a child holds all the potential
of what he or she can become. While
still unborn, a child is physically
nourished and with proper prenatal
care will be more likely to be born
physically healthy." Draw a root
system symbolizing how we are rooted
in our human spirit. Our essence of
being is inherent at birth.
b. "With the first cry, we witness
the world of vitality and the human
spirit. As those first few months
pass, parents and others quickly observe
that this baby is his or her own person.
This ‘daisy seed' is beginning to
grow roots and become familiar with
the world." (Draw the stem coming
up from the seed.)
c. "The child begins to grow,
nurtured by parents who attend to
his or her physical needs for food,
clothing, and shelter. However, for
a child to realize full potential
in life, more than physical needs
must be met."
d. Draw a center to your flower,
with the below inscriptions: Life
Cycle, Sense of Time and Space, and
Purpose or Personal Life Role. Draw
two-way arrows between each label.
e. "This represents the common
aspects of each human being. The three
variables; life cycle, sense of time
and space, and purpose or personal
life role are common to all, but have
f. Draw nine petals of the daisy
for the components that make up the
aspects of human experience. Distribute
Reaching Our Fullest Potential (Handout
PE #2c.) "The petals of the daisy
symbolize the things human beings
need to reach their fullest potential."
g. "Let's go through each of
the nine aspects you see on the handout,
starting with nature and the environment,
and brainstorm some concrete examples
of what we could do to integrate nature
and the environment into our lives
and our children's lives." Go
through all aspects and list a few
ways to conceptualize each one in
h. Explain: "It is essential
for us to integrate these various
aspects of development throughout
our life if we wish to reach our fullest
potential and encourage our child's
i. Continued discussion if time:
Invite participants to share with
the group one of the petals from their
daisy that they feel is particularly
While others were sharing, did you
think of some things you wanted to add
to your own daisy?
8. Closing Comments: "Remember
we all have many facets of our being
that make us a whole persons. We are
whole when we consider and integrate
all the aspects of our human spirit.
The daisy is never perfect or complete,
but we can work toward being well
balanced and achieving fullest potential
by spending time with the gifts in
each petal. This was a lot of work
for us. Congratulate yourself and
another person as we leave today.
Take your daisies home, display them
somewhere, and think about what you
could do to provide for growth.
"Human rights are at the root
of children's rights. They are the
root of the healthy daisy. We all
must have basic human rights as roots
for our healthy development. When
we nurture human rights we create
a circle of love and care for our
9. Journal Assignment:
Reflect and write on the question:
"How can I help my children to
nurture all the aspects of themselves?"