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Free lesson plan to connect human rights and sustainable development

By Julien Ferdinand

Amnesty International has developed a lesson plan for the “World’s Largest Lesson” initiative. It connects the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the Sustainable Development Goals.  It is designed for teachers across the world who are looking to find the best ways to engage students in learning about human rights.

Who is it for?

Educators working with 10-15-year-olds

What will they learn?

  • What their human rights are
  • How to claim those rights including child rights
  • How to contribute to the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals
  • How to link the Universal Declaration of Human Rights with the four Sustainable Development Goals that mainly impact children, which are:

Goal 4 quality education

Goal 5 gender equality

Goal 10 reduced inequalities

Goal 16 peace and justice

How to access the lesson plan.

You can download the lesson plan for free here.

An example of how to use a lesson plan

The learning activities in Kenya were organised in three high schools. Each session took 90 minutes with 120 15-year-olds participating in the learning exercise. Learners were grouped into five groups and guided through two activities: drawing a human rights tree and building a collage on the human rights tree using the four Sustainable Development Goal cards.

The human right tree collage, Kenya, 2017 © Charles Ondabu Omote
The exercise was interactive and participatory, enabling learners to discover human rights, and the Sustainable Development Goals, and to establish a connection between the two. Learners also discovered that they had the power to change and create communities that strive to achieve the goals. They committed to organizing national and county human rights concerts, human rights art festivals, human rights debates, human rights essay writing competitions and sports events to advocate for the realisation of the goals.
The lesson plan, as a tool for teaching and learning human rights and the Sustainable Development Goals, was found to be an effective resource to enhance learners’ involvement and is user friendly.
Charles Ondabu Omote, teacher and human rights club national coordinator

Charles Ondabu Omote is a Human Rights Clubs National Coordinator at Amnesty International Kenya and currently implements the Human Rights Friendly Schools Programme. He also works as a professional teacher and curriculum implementer in Kenyan formal schools. He used his expertise and experience of the Kenyan education sector to develop a lesson plan that could complement other learning tools.

Talking about his experience working on the lesson plan and conducting the sessions, Charles said that his expectations were that the lesson plan would make the teaching and learning of the Sustainable Development Goals and human rights easier and enjoyable to both learners and educators. He thought it was essential for the lesson plan to be user-friendly and to be made available to all human rights educators across the world.

During the experience, Charles found that most young people he worked with didn’t have basic information about the Goals or the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and so this was a new topic for them, which added in creating a new and empowering experience.

Empowering young people to take action and point out who is directly responsible for the realisation of these goals is the best way of moving forward.
Charles Ondabu Omote, teacher and human rights club national coordinator

The outcome of the lesson plan was that the learners developed positive thinking towards the realisation of the goals as a shared responsibility. Charles received positive feedback from learners, saying that they enjoyed the lesson and would like to have access to more.

Charles Ondabu Omote, teacher and human rights clubs national coordinator