Human rights on trial

Thursday 1/25

Today’s Objective(s): SWBAT

  1. Clearly define human rights
  2. Begin identifying the 30 universal human rights
  3. Demonstrate the protections that existing laws provide related to our HR
  4. Connect one of today’s HR (#6-11) to their own lives

Do Now – 10 minutes

Clear your desks completely, and talk to your table partners to see if you can recall the first 11 human rights. We’ll discuss it as a class afterwards to see how you did.

LESSON – 40 minutes

Activity: Mock Trial

Yesterday we talked about human rights 6-11. To review, they are:

6. You have rights no matter where you go
7. We’re all equal before the law
8. Your human rights are protected by law
9. No unfair detainment
10. The right to trial
11. We’re always innocent until proven guilty

Today you’ll be in groups of 8-10 and your job will be to create and perform a Mock Trial…wait, what the heck is that?

Mock: [adj.] not authentic or real, but without the intention to deceive.

Trial: [none] a formal examination of evidence before a judge, and typically before a jury, in order to decide guilt in a case of criminal or civil proceedings. (Google Def)

Does anyone here participate in drama?  Well this is going to be a little like that. You’ll work in your groups to create a skit – a short informal performance intended to educate or inform (Google Def) – that you will act out in front of the class. Each person will play a different role in this skit, and you’re all responsible for participating in the creation of the idea that will become your skit.

The roles are listed on the roll-sheet I’ve handed out, and you’ll be responsible to divide them up within your group. Your group will have to create a skit that does one of the following:

  1. Create a scene with an unfair trial that violates the defendant’s human rights (a defendant is one who is defending himself because he has been accused of doing something wrong)
  2. Create a trial that is fair and which applies the human rights just studied (#6-11).

I’ll let you know which skit your group is in charge of creating. Regardless, you will have approximately 10 minutes to brainstorm, discuss, and rehearse your skits. After that, we’ll act them out.

Closing – 3 minutes

Look back at the definition for human rights that you wrote down previously. Read it to your table partners, making sure that each person in your group has a chance to listen to and recite the definition.


Two items for homework today…

  1. Complete your mock trial – we will perform them first thing Monday
  2. Study for your Tuesday Quiz – it will cover the HR definition and HRs 1-11

Unit Objectives

  1. Identify the 30 HRs and articulate why human rights are important to them as individuals
  2. Order and explain the historical evolution of HRs using primary sources
  3. Identify historical and/or modern day examples of HRs violations
  4. Synthesize understanding about existing HRs, and about HRs issues in our community to develop new, relevant ideas that connect to our community

This Week’s Agenda


Reading/annotating a text, and answering comprehension questions.


We’ll be reviewing the 1st 5 human rights and engaging in a problem solving activity.


Human rights 6-11 will be the focus, along with a mock trial.


We’ll finish the week on human rights 12-18, and then consider a scenario to offer some advice about.

Quote of the Week

“Surrounding yourself with people in a hurry to get where you’re going is a great way to get there.”

Seth Godin


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