Human rights in the school classroom

As many teachers and educators know, the learning that occurs inside the classroom spreads outside - to the school community, families, and to the wider community. This is why human rights education in the classroom is so important.

The Commission's education resources  - rightsEd  - are designed to help students gain a critical understanding of human rights and responsibilities, and to develop the attitudes, behaviours and skills to apply human rights in everyday life.

The rightsEd resources are mapped to the national curriculum and include interactive activities for teachers and their students. They are mainly designed for Year 9 and up (14 years and up). Some activities will be suitable for Year 5 and up (10 years and up). Learning outcomes linked to curriculum are included in each resource.

rightsED resources are free to download and can be photocopied.

Understanding human rights

 Understanding human rights

Understanding human rights is designed to help students understand basic human rights concepts, the origins of modern human rights, and how human rights apply to everyday life. The activities include exploring the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and other human rights instruments.

Subjects: Civics and Citizenship, History, Geography, Legal Studies, International Studies

Year: Year 9 and up (14 years and up)

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Child rights

 Child RightsChild rights is designed to help students explore the specific rights of children. The activities will enable students to understand the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child and what it means for children in Australia. This resource will also help students to develop an understanding of the rights of children in Australian immigration detention centres.

Subjects: Civics and Citizenship, Society and Environment (all)

Year: Year 5 and up (10 years and up)

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Bringing them home

 Bringing them home

This resource is designed to help students understand the issues surrounding the forcible removal of Indigenous people in Australian history.  It complements the Commission’s report Bringing them home: National Inquiry into the Separation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Children from Their Families, published in 1997.

Subjects: Society and Environment, English, Arts/Drama, Australian Studies, Aboriginal Studies, Civics and Citizenship, Geography, History

Year: Most activities suitable for Year 9 and up. Some activities suitable for Year 5 and up.

Warning: These materials may contain images of deceased Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander persons.

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Video: Watch on YouTube

Face the facts

 Face the FactsThe Face the Facts education resource will help students understand issues affecting Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, migrants, refugees and asylum seekers. This resource complements the Commission’s 2012 Face the Facts publication, which provides accurate and easy to understand facts about these groups based on primary research information from a variety of sources.

Subject: Civics and Citizenship, History, Geography

Year: Year 9 and up (14 years and up)

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Commemorate Human Rights Day

 Commemorate Human Rights DayThis resource is designed to help students to commemorate human rights day and to further their understanding of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which was adopted on 10 December 1948.

Subjects: Civics and Citizenship, Society and Environment (all), Design and Technology, English, Legal Studies, International Studies

Year: Year 9 and up (14 years and up)

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Voices of Australia

 Voices of AustraliaThis resource is designed to complement the publication Voices of Australia: 30 years since the Racial Discrimination Act. The activities allow for students to share ideas about each other, to explore their own family history and experiences of diversity, discrimination, race relations, friendships and signs of respect. A series of audio files have been developed to complement the resource and activity sheets.

Subjects: Civics and Citizenship, History, all Society and Environment subjects, English and Literature

Year: Most activities are suited to Upper Secondary (Year 10 and up). Some activities are suited for Upper Primary (Year 5–6).

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Listen to audio files

Disability Rights – What about Doug’s rights? 

 Disability Rights – What about Doug’s rights?

This resource will help students to explore the concepts of disability discrimination. The activities focus around the story of a school student (Doug) who returns to school after a serious basketball accident.
A video has been developed to complement the resource and activity sheets.

Subjects: Personal Development, Health, Physical Education, Life Skills, Civics and Citizenship, Legal Studies

Year: Year 9 and up (14 years and up)

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Young people in the workplace

 Young people in the workplace

This resource will help students understand the issues around workplace discrimination. The activities include exploring different types of discrimination can occur at work - including on the basis of race, age, sex and disability - and the rights and responsibilities of employees and employers. A video has been developed to complement the resource and activity sheets. The video explores a potential real-life situation of young people entering the workplace.

Subjects: Civics and Citizenship, Business Studies, Career Education, Life Skills, Legal Studies, Commerce

Year: Year 9 and up (14 years and up)

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Tackling sexual harassment

 Tackling sexual harassment

Sexual harassment is a significant issue in the Australian community including in schools. Tackling sexual harassment is designed to engage students in an active examination of sexual harassment; its causes, effects and strategies to address it. By understanding their rights and responsibilities, students can work together to identify and address sexual harassment in their school – whether it happens to them or if they see it happening to another student. A video has been developed to complement the resource and activity sheets.

Subjects: Civics and Citizenship, Personal Development/Health/Physical Education

Year: Year 9 and up (14 years and up)

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