Story of Our Rights and Freedoms - Tuning In and Understanding Concepts

Story of Our Rights and Freedoms - Tuning In and Understanding Concepts

Lesson 1 of 4 in this unit

  • Secondary
  • Year 9 - 10
  • Humanities and Social Sciences
  • History
  • Civics and Citizenship
  • Social
  • Equality
  • Homelessness
  • Human Rights
  • ...

Lesson summary

In this Tuning In lesson, students will be introduced to the concept of rights and freedoms. They will critically consider the supporting and opposing viewpoint on a set of provocations related to rights and freedoms. Students will use the ‘Think-Pair-Share’ visible thinking routine to explore their prior knowledge of rights and freedoms, then watch a short overview video. The class will then work together to consider what else they would like to know about rights and freedoms. Students will work independently to research a chosen question, then share what they have discovered in a facilitated class discussion.

Essential question:

  • What are rights and freedoms?

Lesson guides and printables

Lesson Plan
Student Worksheet
Teacher Content Info

Lesson details

Curriculum mapping

Australian curriculum content descriptions

Year 10 History:

  • The origins and significance of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, including Australia’s involvement in the development of the declaration (ACDSEH023
  • Process and synthesise information from a range of sources for use as evidence in an historical argument (ACHHS188

Syllabus outcomes: HT5-2HT4-6.

General capabilities: Literacy.

Relevant parts of Year 10 achievement standards: Students explain the context for people’s actions in the past. Students explain the significance of events and developments from a range of perspectives. They explain different interpretations of the past and recognise the evidence used to support these interpretations. 

Unit of work: Story of Our Rights and Freedoms – Year 10.

Time required: 90 mins.

Level of teacher scaffolding: Medium – facilitate class discussion.

Resources required

  • Student Worksheet – one copy per student
  • Device capable of audio/visual presentation to present a website to the class
  • Three sheets of butcher’s paper
  • Web-enabled device for Internet search (enough for one per four students)

Skills

This lesson is designed to build students’ competencies in the following skills:

  • Creativity
  • Communication
  • Critical thinking

Additional info

Throughout the Story of Our Rights and Freedoms lessons, students will consider Civics and Citizenship concepts through a human rights lens. They will critically assess the Australian system of government and the effect that it has on our rights and freedoms.
There is no universally accepted definition of human rights, and our understanding is continually developing. Some definitions include:

  • The recognition and respect of peoples’ dignity
  • A set of moral and legal guidelines that promote and protect the recognition of our values, our identity and access to an adequate standard of living
  • The basic standards by which we can identify and measure inequality and fairness
  • Those rights associated with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR)

When we talk about human rights we usually refer to principles that have been agreed upon by countries throughout the world. These rights have been set down in international agreements and form part of international law. They can also be written into the domestic law of individual countries. Human rights cover virtually every area of human life and activity. These include:

  • Civil and political rights, such as freedom of speech and freedom from torture
  • Economic and social rights, such as the rights to health and education
  • Individual rights, including the right to a fair trial
  • Collective rights, or those rights that apply to groups of people, such as the right to a healthy environment or to live on one’s ancestral land.

The UDHR is an international document that recognises the basic rights and fundamental freedoms to which all human beings are entitled. It was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly on 10 December 1948 and marks a key milestone in the history of human rights. The Magna Carta, though limited in who it protected, was an important precursor to the UDHR.

Click here to watch a video about the Magna Carta.

You can view the entire text of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and the other core international human rights treaties, on the United Nation’s website or by downloading RightsApp (free from the iTunes App store).

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