Child's Rights Convention

AIM:  To  introduce  kids and teachers to the United Nations Rights of
the Child Convention.
Hi, my name is Bill. I work voluntarily for UNICEF (the United Nations
Children's Fund). Over the next few sessions, you & I are going to sit
down  together  and  really  think how we can make some changes to the
world we live in. In each lesson we will be discussing  subjects  that
concern  you and other children around the globe but not just learning
about them; together, we will create opportunities for you to  present
your  thoughts  and ideas OUT THERE in your local community and ACROSS
THE WORLD. You are welcome to join us at any stage of the  discussions
which  will  include  subjects such as 'Children and Water', 'Children
and War', 'Food and Nutrition', 'Street Kids', 'Health and Education',
and 'Children and the Developing World'. However, it  might  be  worth
your  while  just  spending  some  time thinking about Child Rights in
general which is the topic of this first lesson. By the  way,  when  I
say  "lesson",  it's  not  the same as having a lesson at school. With
KIDPROJ *Unicef, YOU are the teachers and your pupils are adults  such
as little old me! So share with me your ideas and views so that we can
learn  together about Children and the World we live in now and should
live in the future.
One  more  thing  before  we start, each week we will try and organize
some group projects for you and your school or club to  carry  out  IN
THE  LOCAL COMMUNITY and sometimes for the benefit of other countries.
The first of these will be in *UNICEF: 'KIDS & WATER LESSON PLAN 1' so
look out for that in the next lesson plan!
But  to begin with let's try to understand what 'rights' you have as a
child and what 'rights' you'd like to have as you grow up.
Below are a few suggestions that might get you thinking, but remember,
try  and create other ways of presenting your thoughts on Child Rights
e.g. posters, stories, letters to friends in other countries...
A  brief summary of the Convention is available in *UNICEF: CONVENTION
LESSON PLAN 1, but before looking at the United Nation's version, have
a go at making your own list of child rights. The following  may  help
"Imagine  that your country has been invaded and taken over by another
country and its people: a country that forbids the use  of  any  other
language  or  culture than its own - one which forbids the practice of
festivals (e.g. easter, christmas) or anything else cultural  (discos,
birthday parties, sports). What things would you have to give up or do
in secret? How would you feel?"
"List  all  the  things  you  feel that children need in order to live
happy and healthy lives - think about what it would feel like to  have
all these things taken away e.g. your freedom to speak, to privacy, to
a safe, healthly environment, to freedom from punishment and degrading
Here  is  a  list of children's rights written in 1959: write your own
list before peeking at the one below!
1.  The  right to equality, regardless of race, colour, sex, religion,
national, or social origin.
2. The right to develop physically and mentally in a healthly manner.
3. The right to a name and nationality.
4. The right to adequate nutrition, housing, and medical services.
5. The right to special care, if handicapped.
6. The right to love, understanding and protection.
7. The right to free education, to play and recreation.
8.  The  right  to  be  among  the  first to recieve relief in time so
9.  The  right to protection against all forms of neglect, cruelty and
10.The  right  to  be  brought  up in a spirit of tolerance, peace and
universal brotherhood.
How does this list compare with your list?
Imagine  you  could  only have 3 out of these 10 rights. Which 3 would
you choose?
Interview  an  adult:  find out what they remember of their childhood?
Ask about their earliest memories (of going to school, of going to the
doctor).  Ask  about  their  worst  memories,   and   their   happiest
e.g. When you were a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
     Did you change your mind? What made you change your mind?
     What did you do when you left school?
     If this is different from what you wanted to do, why?
     If you had another chance, would you do the same thing again?
     What would you change?
Now  think what differences are there between being an adult and being
a child?
How did you get on? Why not send in your work so that others can learn
about  what  you  think.  Teachers, why not post your pupils' work to:
KIDPROJ @ VM1.NODAK.EDU  with  the  subject  heading:
Good  luck!  I  look forward to hearing from you all. The next subject
we'll be chatting about will be 'Water'. Look  out  for  the  message:
Happy thinking!
Bye for now,

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Patricia A. Weeg