International training centre for Human Rights and Peace Teaching
European Seminar for Teachers
Geneva, Switzerland, 9 - 15 July 1995
13th International Training Session
on human rights and peace teaching
"Education in human rights and peace:
Issues an guidelines for teaching"
Director of Publications
International Training Centre on Human Rights
and Peace Teaching (CIFEDHOP)
The opinions expressed in this work are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the official policy of the Council for Cultural Co-operation of the Council of Europe nor that of the Secretariat.
All correspondence concerning this report or the reproduction or translation of all or part of the document should be addressed to the Director of Education, Culture and Sport of the Council of Europe (F - 67075 Strasbourg Cedex).
1.1.The organisation responsible for the training session
1.2. The participants and speakers
Structure and aims of the training session
Subject matter of the training session
3.1.1 The purposes of education in human rights and peace
3.1.2 The sharing of universal values: preconditions and obstacles
3.1.3 Personal autonomy and school democracy
3.1.4 Evaluation, exclusion and social justice
3.2 Guidelines for teaching
3.2.1 Familiarisation with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights
3.2.2 Familiarisation with the International Convention on the Rights of the Child
3.2.3 Using pictures to teach human rights
3.2.4 Prejudices and discrimination
3.2.5 School democracy and co-operation in disadvantaged areas
3.2.6 School rules and democracy
3.2.7 Formative and selective evaluation
3.2.8 Beggar children
Appendix - Programme of the training session
The thirteenth international CIFEDHOP training seminar was held from 9 to 15 July 1995 in Geneva, under the auspices of the Council of Europe. The theme proposed for the three language sections was "Education in human rights and peace: Issues and guidelines for teaching".
CIFEDHOP organises an international training seminar every year in Geneva for teachers and specialists working in the field of education about human rights and peace; the seminar is divided into three language sections: English, French and Spanish. The Centre also arranges regional and national seminars in North America, Western and Eastern Europe and Africa. The documents relating to the international seminars run by the Centre are published in the series Thématique.
The International Centre for Human Rights and Peace Education (CIFEDHOP) was created in 1984 by the World Association for Schools as Instruments of Peace (EIP), a non-governmental organisation with consultative status to the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations, Unesco, ILO and the Council of Europe.
One hundred and eight teachers from 48 countries took part in the seminar's three language sections. There were 61 participants in the French section, from 26 countries (North America, North and Sub-Saharan Africa, Asia, and Western, Central and Eastern Europe). The majority of the participants were teachers in primary, secondary general and vocational schools. Their fields of specialism covered almost all school subjects. Secondary grammar school teachers, students, non-teaching members of school staffs and members of the liberal professions and NGOs also took part in the seminar. The speakers and educational organisers were specialists in social science, law, educational science, economics, politics and classroom teaching.
The programme of the international seminar held in July 1995 was made up of two distinct elements.
The first element was exchange of opinion and views, with the general aim of teasing out the issues raised by the topics being studied. This was the purpose of the opening discussion in the seminar programme, and of three round tables, since the matters addressed were intended to encourage participants to think about a range of social, political, cultural, economic and other questions intrinsic to the school situation. Another aim of this element of the training was to introduce participants to the field of international law on human rights. Among the main subjects addressed were the terms and concepts, breadth and limitations of international and regional systems of protecting human rights.
The second element was devoted to applications in teaching, by means of workshops. The principal aim of this work was to enable participants to share teaching tools and practices supporting education about human rights and peace in formal and non-formal education. Another aim of this element was to encourage participants to contextualise such education within a critical approach that sees education about human rights and peace as part of a global process of democratic participation and intercultural transferability.
In the spirit of the above, the guidelines suggested to participants at the 13th seminar re-affirmed the values expressed in the Vienna Declaration (of 9 October 1993), which stresses, inter alia, that: "All our countries are committed to pluralist and parliamentary democracy, the indivisibility and universality of human rights, the rule of law and a common cultural heritage enriched by its diversity."
The educational approach adopted by the team responsible for the seminar was also a response to the appeal made by the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe in its Recommendation No. R (85) 7, on teaching and learning about human rights in schools, where it emphasises, particularly in article 5 of the Recommendation, the importance of training teachers to teach about human rights.
At the beginning of the opening discussion, participants were reminded that education about human rights and peace has to rest on shared universal values. Such a fundamental principle was to some extent a modern affirmation of our "common humanity". It called for the development of a cosmopolitan consciousness, world citizenship and a mingling of cultures. It argued for social justice transcending particular interests, for universal history, for planetary awareness and a culture of peace. In educational terms, this basic principle could be translated into the goal of making people aware of major world problems. Moreover, such education faced stormy weather in an international context of fierce particularist opposition to universalist arguments; and it was in an attempt to reconcile these two tendencies that efforts had been made to promote intercultural education. Such education set out to demonstrate that universalist and particularist views far from being incompatible could both derive from the common goal of building a pluralistic world with shared basic values. Intercultural education went to the heart of major social, economic and political issues of the present day, but the key notions which it propounded otherness, tolerance and respect for differences were undermined by the resurgence of the old demons of xenophobia, ultra-nationalism and racism.
The establishment of social justice for all was also one of the aims of education. However, the widely accepted idea that educational systems tended to reproduce the dominant values found in the society, should should be borne in mind in this context. Such systems were said to apply a selection-rejection mechanism based on the transmission of a dominant culture through the school, one of the effects of which was to relegate the majority of working-class pupils to intellectual and social exclusion. Furthermore, some teachers had in fact escaped from the doldrums of what was sometimes called "sociological fatalism" and had demonstrated that it was possible to enable pupils from working-class backgrounds to achieve academic success. Educational experiments in this field had shown that teaching which was based less on books and more on learners' real lives gave them greater motivation and was a better preparation for playing the part of active and responsible citizens. Such a "real-life approach" acknowledged the value of using knowledge to do things and, by extension, called into question the usefulness of the knowledge capital accumulated during years of schooling which was only rarely put to the test of observation and experience. This approach, in its many variations, had been adopted by popular literacy groups, for whom education was defined as the "practice of liberty"; it was based on the notion that the true democratisation of societies rested on everyone's having access to knowledge. A number of teachers had been practising such education, particularly in Western countries, and especially in disadvantaged areas where education projects had been set up in co-operation with a range of cultural, educational and social agencies.
The third aim of education about human rights and peace was the desire to introduce democratic relationships into the teaching process itself. From this point of view, education about human rights became in a way merged with the teaching itself; the latter did not employ "formal" teaching about human rights and peace, but suggested that human rights could and must be experienced first of all in the relationships which the teacher established with the pupils, and the pupils with each other. Such an aim required that subjects become actors.
These aims called for changes at a time when our traditional landmarks were being thrown into fin-de-siècle confusion. Antonio Papisca, Director of the Human Rights Study and Training Centre at the University of Padua, began by recalling that under the terms of article 28 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, "Everyone is entitled to a social and international order in which the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration can be fully realized." This position of principle transcended the notion of geographical territoriality and gave rise to a new notion of development of universal civic virtues. Such a vision had to take concrete shape on the ground where people lived: if universal values were to be truly shared, if social justice for all was to be instituted and participatory democracy was to be built, then individuals had to make human rights their own. This process needed in turn to be locked into a world system that set out to build in interdependence between the local, where concrete action took place, and the global, which was seen as a transnational forum for solidarity. Efforts needed to be made in this direction in order to encourage the concept of local contracts by which various institutions such as schools would help to realise democratic projects over which citizens had some genuine control. People's ability to take charge of their "own sovereignty" could be seen as an indicator of social change and of the existence of a responsible civil society based on the actual implementation of international instruments.
The changes which needed to be made if the broad aims of education about human rights and peace were to be attained, included the development and affirmation of ethical awareness. On this subject, Abraham Magendzo, a researcher at the Interdiscplinary Educational Research Programme in Santiago (Chile), stressed that in the Latin American context, "the culture of otherness is an essential precondition for the strengthening of democracy and hence for the building of national cultures in which exclusion based on ethnic allegiance will no longer be rife". According to A. Magendzo, education in Latin America had, consciously or unconsciously, contributed to cultural divisiveness whenever a culture had been officially recognised in the curriculum. Once established in the syllabus and the canon of teaching texts, such a culture possessed, in Bourdieu's terms, control of "symbolic capital".
The development of an intercultural "state of mind" appeared to be the way ahead if education about human rights and peace were to be seen as the champion of plurality and equality between cultures.
In conclusion, it was seen that attainment of the broad aims of education about human rights and peace depended on the fulfilment of a number of preconditions, among which were, primarily, teaching aimed at developing a critical mind, a sense of action, ownership of one's environment and the building of relationships based on solidarity.
Ideas about teaching which revealed a desire for shared universal values were part of a debate between contradictory positions. These were framed in different registers, but all illustrated, in their various ways, the practical difficulty of international understanding. This was true of the generally accepted antithesis between two viewpoints, one of which called for new world solidarity, while the other predicted a glowing future through competition and the law of profit. A number of works including that recently published by the Lisbon Group evoked this tension. By analogy, the same applied to the interests opposing those in favour of culture and universality, as was seen particularly in the discussions at the World Conference on Human Rights held in Vienna in 1993, which re-affirmed human rights.
The globalisation of economic relations had a destabilising effect in fact, especially on the democratic states founded on the sovereignty of the people. It was here that the exercise of responsible citizenship and the learning of democracy had been taken up, starting in childhood with the implementation of educational policies which supposedly measured up to such an ideal. These policies obviously tended to be evaluated by comparing how far a particular state was from world-wide trends to which it was adjusting, thereby reinforcing the importance of such trends for the educational choices which it made. From this standpoint, the current globalisation looked like a steamroller that was weakening the state. The educational consequences of such a process of change suggested that the world of education was being subordinated to the imperatives of the world market.
According to Riccardo Petrella, Chairman of the Lisbon Group, the obstacles to the universalisation of human rights were part and parcel of the ideological argument underlying the globalisation of markets. The first of these obstacles was the subordination of ways of thinking and of social progress to the principle of excellence. In this could be seen the driving force behind social exclusion, that "inexorable machine" of discrimination and selection. The second obstacle was technology, seen as an unchallenged indicator of efficiency. But only very rarely were questions asked about human capacity and desire to adapt to technology. Progress through technology, which had become idealised, was turning educational systems into instruments of competition.
The associated arguments in favour of the virtues of productivity were part of the logic of the market, which was changing citizens into consumers, the aim being to pay less for products which were ceaselessly claimed to be improvements. In many cases, this "productionist" ideology was the very source of violations of human rights, especially the rights of children who were compelled, in some regions of the world, to enter into forced labour. The incessant call to compete was another obstacle to sharing universal values. It modelled production on the priorities of the law of profit. Any region of the world which did not compete was put into a waiting loop. As R. Petrella pointed out, this was the case in Africa, for example, whose needs did not include at least in the short term information superhighways.
Professor Wilhem Doise, of the Faculty of Psychology of the University of Geneva, emphasised that the tendency to wish to impose a single way of thinking ran counter to any attempt to imagine ways of actually living together in solidarity. Moreover, the priority given to the proper functioning of institutions which were guarantors of respect for the law was not always in complete harmony with respect for human rights. As was observed by Reynaldo Ty, of the University of Manila, there was a certain "idolising of the law" in this regard, which relieved some people of the further desire to ensure that it coincided with human rights. Lastly, the sharing of universal values presupposed intercultural dialogue; we often constructed our images of others on the basis of our own values, so that there was a persistent gap.
The preconditions for shared universal values based on human rights included the need to affirm the idea of a constitutional society which was broader than that of a constitutional state. The development of a world moral consciousness, to borrow R. Petrella's terms, called for "an alliance between the civil society and the enlightened classes". From this point of view, the eight billion individuals who would make up the world population in 25 years' time would have to become "subjects of history", so that there was a pressing need for a new world culture based on the principle of respect for and application of rights for all. One precondition for such a generous and ambitious project was that we should take steps to "delegitimise principles" that hindered the sharing of universal values and the convergence of pluralistic visions of the world, R. Petrella concluded.
In a certain way it could be said that this topic was part of an age-old struggle between "Ancients" and "Moderns", which appeared at the historical moment when children came to be considered as an age-group. Since then and going far beyond a straightforward quarrel between "traditionalists" and "modernists" or between "Rousseauists" and "anti-Rousseauists" children had been regarded as being at the centre of educational activity. At the beginning of this century, educational theories based on the observation and development of the child led to profound changes in teaching. The protagonists of the active school propounded the need to take into account the child's development in teaching, in opposition to what they called the authoritarian school, in which the child was required to be a passive subject. The subsequent work in developmental psychology and, more recently, in differentiated teaching, and in the field of constructivist theories, called for learning to be defined as a process. In other words, the question of what knowledge should be transmitted to learners was replaced by that of asking how children learn.
Other work, although concentrating more on the role of the school, stressed the importance of the right to speak in the process of liberating the subject from the overbearing weight of the institution. In addition, the work done in the field of cultural anthropology revealed the influence of an individual's cultural roots and historical memory on his or her relationship to knowledge.
In this context, education about human rights suggested that those rights might or indeed must be experienced first in the relationships which the teacher established with the pupils, and the pupils with each other. Secondly, education about human rights and peace had to be part of a "developmentalist" approach to education. Finally, such education set out to resolve conflicts of values, in the face of which the teacher took on the role of mediator.
Taking his inspiration from Condorcet, Michel Assemat, Director of the L. Armand French lycée in Villefranche sur Saône, recalled first of all that the culture of human rights in schools had to be supported by an affirmation that "every child has the right to become what he or she can be". In that spirit, the structure of pupil participation established in the French school system enabled them to have their voice heard. Through the election of class representatives and councils of representatives, the pupils took part in the democratic running of the school and, in doing so, were gradually being prepared to take on their roles and responsibilities as citizens. A number of factors had also reinforced that participation in the course of recent history. A new style of school architecture, more conducive to social activity, had replaced the erstwhile austere classrooms and corridors, which gave a feeling of being enclosed. The lycée pupils' movement, which began in May 1968 and still continued, had come to be accepted by political and school authorities as a partner in dialogue. The mentality of teachers themselves had evolved so that the Napoleonic military legacy had gradually given way to educational approaches marked by openness and dialogue. School projects were thus now intended to be the expression of interests which were shared by the entire membership of the school community. In terms of educational sociology, making mistakes was henceforward seen as an integral part of learning, and M. Assemat stressed that"the teachers have the duty to accompany the pupils throughout their career".
Michel Vuille, a sociologist working at the Sociology Research Service of the Faculty of Psychology and Educational Science at the University of Geneva, set the question of autonomy and school democracy in the context of changing school policy. "Globalising" theory, according to which social origins determined success at school, was not the only explanation for the difficulties facing present-day school systems in post-industrial societies.
Social structures had changed, and the arrival of a growing number of children from different cultures presented schools with new challenges, particularly in terms of the struggle against school failure. The Geneva authorities were carrying out a complete review of schools, and were suggesting new guidelines to resolve the problem: individualising pupils' learning careers, team working among teachers, and the placing of the pupil at the heart of educational activity. This new approach, aimed at improved management of a"set of problems", was based on principles which it was sometimes difficult to reconcile, M. Vuille reminded participants. In an attempt to introduce a sense of community and social justice, the first of these principles claimed that all pupils should benefit from the education provided. The second was described as domestic, since it aimed at improving the quality of social relationships, of reception of newcomers, co-operation and grass-roots democracy. The third was of an industrial nature since it aimed at responding to demands for market skills in a spirit of competition. The last principle was that of inspiration, the driving force of innovation, somewhat after the manner of the new management style of creative enterprises. These new socio-educational parameters were accompanied by significant social changes in post-industrial societies: the loss of social integration through paid work and loss of the personal independence defined by stable employment, secure housing and the importance of the family. Today's children, with multiple cultural allegiances, were growing up in the midst of these changes. This context posed a major challenge to the protagonists of school democracy, which called for a renewal of the role of schools. They should act as mediators between the young people who attended them and the surrounding social environment, especially the parents. Social and intercultural mediation could above all enable all actors to join in a common educational endeavour, the sociologist suggested, and thereby to avoid the more widespread development of damaged identities which condemned people to isolation.
This topic led us to consideration of both the purpose and the effects of evaluation practices, with particular regard to the nature of the aims of evaluation. The fact that these might be formulated so that they met the development needs of both a society and the learner who was, moreover, expected to play an active part one day in that development was not sufficient reason to set aside certain questions which, if left unasked, could reduce evaluation to the imperatives of the moment. This was the case, for example, with types of evaluation which served to select pupils according to their expected ability to participate in the competitive development of the world economy. On the other hand, evaluation could also help to reinforce freedom in learning by promoting methods which encouraged pupils to develop a critical mind.
Seen from one particular point of view, evaluation could be as much a tool of emancipation as a means of social selection, and indeed exclusion. What were the main challenges to be faced if evaluation in schools were to be conducted from this angle and to be a "partner" of human rights?
The parents' socio-economic and cultural situation was a major predictor of children's academic success and, in the countries of the South, even of their entry into the school system. The de facto inequality resulting from this selection led us to seek to understand its causes and to propose the adoption of socio-educational policies aimed at reducing inequalities. As regards the evaluation mechanisms employed in formal education, the dominant mode of evaluation was vertical; hence, it sustained the recurrent power to select skills and to order them hierarchically. As a result, success needed failure, its obverse, in order to illustrate and proclaim the elective merits of rising up the social scale.
However, in order to make access to success more equitable, it was necessary to see learning in a larger, more complex context, namely that of change. There was no learning without a journey, stated Professor Pol Dupont, of the University of Mons-Hainault, Belgium. That journey, he said, assumed a movement from one starting place to a different place via others which implied that what was experienced could bring about a change in one's sense of development, and in this case, in the child's very sense of cultural and intellectual development. This journey was also an encounter with "the other" and with the unknown. It suggested that values regarded as certain might be called into question. It opened the door to the complexity of relationships with humanity and knowledge. If transferred to the school environment, such an approach encouraged creativity in an open system. It was opposed to rigid and ossified teaching practices.
The aim of this method of managing the complex and the unexpected made it possible to examine "how the innovations proposed give rise little by little to thinking that is both nonconformist and, as far as possible, 'poetic', in the sense that it leads every human being (pupils, teachers, directors, etc.) to question, challenge and transform existing rules". Such a method also presupposed choices of evaluation practices that took account of the complexity of learning, which was seen as a journey made up of several moves from place to place. The evaluation of learning could thus link mastery of knowledge, skills and attitudes to a dynamic process of building which remained, by definition, incomplete. Learning, speaking and thinking needed time, and were built up at every person's own pace. A closed system which fed on the illusion of "measurable efficiency" led to double failure: that of the teacher and that of the pupil, whose performance was judged to be poor in comparison with that of others at a given moment in his or her particular history. This new paradigm of learning, Pol Dupont said, invited teachers "to bring out the sense, to transform the carrying out of orders into action, to nourish networks of information, to change centralism into autonomy, sterile order into fertile paradoxes, mechanical application into anticipation".
But in order to make these moves this journey a number of obstacles must be overcome. The case of a Brazilian school gave a good illustration of the scale of the difficulties to be surmounted. Professor Iza Guerra Labelle, of the School of Social Service of the University of Rio de Janeiro, described her country's school system as elitist. The system had been designed, she added, "not as a means of national integration, but as a strategy for social exclusion". The dominant culture in schools was that of the "have" classes. In terms of school evaluation, the children from working-class backgrounds were bound to fail because the only way of measuring learning was through examinations and tests based on the mastery of knowledge. Such children's cognitive and affective processes, their experience and popular culture were removed from the area of evaluation. The field of non-formal education had, however, opened the way to educational innovation. Popular literacy and vocational training projects had in many cases enabled people to gain an insight into the world and to develop a critical approach to institutional powers. But, Iza Guerra Labelle, stressed, it was obvious that the organisers had had to overcome great difficulties in all these projects.
On the one hand, the teachers had had to make the effort to break out of their long-established ruts of theory, and the children had had to overcome, often with difficulty, the obstacles to learning created by their living conditions. But the most difficult thing of all in the educational process was to learn to think like a free being, a whole citizen. This only seemed possible if the teachers showed the will and the courage to leave their power aside in order finally to use their knowledge to recognise the worth of each person and his or her pace of learning. At a time when markets were becoming global and when hyper-selectivity was being practised in school skills, the challenge was obviously enormous.
The workshops and discussion groups programmed in the afternoons set out to encourage participants to integrate the issues identified in the morning sessions into their actual teaching. Thanks to interventions by Mr Yves Lador, from the CIFEDHOP educational staff, backed up by Mr Antoine Bernard, Executive Secretary of the International Human Rights Federation, and Isse O. Bokatola, Professor of Law at the Universities of Geneva and Lausanne, these educational activities also made it possible to emphasise the importance of a basic legal knowledge of the international and regional instruments for the protection of human rights. The subject matter of a legal nature which was presented to participants in the mornings was thus placed in context by underpinning the teaching guidelines suggested later. Moreover, in view of the cultural and geographical diversity of the participants, the workshops and discussion groups suggested an approach which set out to be both intercultural and transferable.
Workshop led by Christian Staquet, trainer, Belgium.
Key words: choice, co-operation, human rights, tolerance, values.
This workshop had the twofold aim of closely examining the subject matter of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) and, once participants had read the document, of drawing up a scale of human rights on the basis of each person's own values. The suggested approach drew on the teaching of co-operation and the clarification of values.
Participants' discussion of their respective scales of human rights assumed that everyone was able to grasp fully the meaning of each right. The approach also invited participants to be aware of human rights in daily life, to accept other people's choices in a spirit of tolerance, to agree to widen the range of their own choices, to integrate these into their everyday life and to see them as part of the universal values underlying human rights.
The workshop took place in stages: a. taking note of the UDHR; b. drawing up of a personal scale of the rights laid down in the Declaration; c. sharing with a partner; d. partial group synthesis; e. sharing of the modified scales after these exchanges; f. justification of the choices made on the basis of personal values; g. comparison and sharing of the group values; h. transcription of the choices made on to a table of individual and collective projects to be carried out; and i. drawing up of a calendar for implementation.
Materials: Universal Declaration of Human Rights, in the version published by EIP in simplified language, one pair of scissors per participant, coloured pens to distinguish original choices from later additions, sheets of paper and adhesive tape.
References: Klipper-Bertrans, Liliane: Educational dossier "Vivre les droits de l'homme", pack of materials for moral science teaching, Cedil, Brussels. Staquet, Christian: Que fais-tu personnellement pour sauvegarder ton environnement?, Entre-Vues, No. 2, Brussels.
Workshop led by Michel Bastien, Inspector at the Belgian Ministry of Education, Research and Training, and Marc Gourlé, teacher of moral science at the Jules Bordet Royal Athénée (grammar school), Brussels, Belgium.
Key words: co-operation, rights of the child, education, children, duties, appeal, violation of rights.
The aims of this workshop, which was concerned with how to enable pupils to take on board the International Convention on the Rights of the Child, were to practise differentiated teaching, and to explore, develop and master active methods which could be used at various levels of teaching and in a range of cultural contexts. The term humanistic teaching might also be used since the participants or pupils in class were to become actors in their own learning, to learn to know themselves better, and to clarify their values and improve their interpersonal relationships.
The reasoning behind the workshop was that if the aim of education was to prepare children to become active citizens and responsible, independent adults who were able to co- operate with others, it appeared appropriate and "logical" to apply learning strategies which called for co-operation, participation and interaction.
The first part of the workshop was run as follows: a. participants familiarised themselves with the Convention through co-operative learning, forming teams of four and dividing the text of the Convention into four sections, using the plain-language text indicated in the references given at the end below; b. each member of the team was given a different section of the text (each clearly marked); c. participants left their original teams to join members of the other teams holding the same section of the text with the aim of forming "groups of experts"; d. participants took note of their section of the text and exchanged views in order to deepen their understanding of it; e. the same participants worked out among themselves the best ways of teaching their section of the text to the members of their original teams; f. once back in their original teams, each participant taught his or her section of the text to the others, who took it in turn to do likewise; g. the teacher or trainer set a test to check the degree to which the knowledge had been assimilated.
The second part contained the following: a. case studies of violations of the rights of the child; b. comparison between the situations presented and the rights contained in the Convention; and c. a quest for suitable means of protection which might be implemented in the light of the cases studied.
The third part consisted of a piece of drama. Having chosen a photograph, the actual context of which was not necessarily known, participants described it to others while a. trying to identify the character in the photograph; b. attempting to work out where the scene was taking place; c. describing the character's situation in relation to the rights of the child; and d. finally choosing one or more of the characters presented and drafting a message of hope and solidarity for them.
Materials: International Convention on the Rights of the Child, sheets of paper and coloured pens, photographs of children suffering discrimination, case studies.
References: Amnesty International: Annual Reports and Emergency Letters to Members. Bastien, Michel and Gourlé, Marc: Découvrons les droits de l'enfant, Labor publishers, Brussels, 1995.
Workshop led by Hugh Starkey, Professor of French and French and British Civilisation at Westminster College, Oxford, United Kingdom. Council of Europe Expert in human rights teaching.
The aims of this workshop were to explore the value of drawings and photographs for stimulating discussion and thought on human rights questions, and to learn how to carry out similar activities with pupils.
Key words: rights, freedom of opinion and expression, stereotypes, universality.
The educational approach suggested drew on work done in the United Kingdom over twenty years by the promoters of "World Studies".
The workshop ran as follows: a. presentation by the workshop leader on cartoons and humorous drawings in the context of human rights teaching. Examples of stereotypes, violent images, etc.; b. discussion in small groups on a varied set of pictures handed out to participants, and drawing together of comments; c. use of the album Dessine-moi un droit de l'homme published by EIP and comparison of the pictures suggested with the European Convention on Human Rights; d. comments to the group on their choice of pictures to teach human rights; evaluation of the discussion.
References: Richardson, R: Learning for Change in World Society, 1976. Osler, A: Development Education: Global Perspectives in the Curriculum, 1994.
Workshop led by Rosa Klainer, teacher, member of the Ecumenical Human Rights Movement, Buenos Aires, Argentina.
The aims of this workshop were: a. to explore what brings us closer to or alienates us from"others" in a group; b. to experience building a group identity on the basis of awareness of differences; and c. to acknowledge the value of the contributions of all group members in the process of identity creation.
Key words: discrimination, universality of human rights, identity, interculturalism, interdependence, prejudices, values.
The activity fell into two parts. The first part was made up of the following stages: a. a brief introduction of participants and the aims of the exercise; b. individual preliminary work in which each participant "pinpointed" three other participants and noted his or her impressions of them and wrote a short report of these; c. formation of two sub-groups according to identity markers suggested by the workshop leader (e.g. vegetarians/non-vegetarians, intellectual/sporting types, etc.). The members of one sub- group had to give their views of the other group, and vice versa; d. discussion of what people felt and the perceptions and attitudes which the members of the sub-groups demonstrated during the exercise; e. formation of groups of four to six persons who felt they would be able to work together to carry out a joint group project; f. creation by each group of a wall chart illustrating its identity markers; and g. pooling of the wall charts and collective discussion.
The second part: a. participants went back over their process of making choices about others and decisions about themselves in carrying out a common project; and b. they gave their personal views and criticisms of the suggested approach; they discussed the possibilities of transferring it to their own professional contexts.
Materials: pens and large sheets of paper.
References: The experiential method of teaching human rights and the Diseño Curricular Problematizador, Interdisciplinary Educational Research Programme, Santiago, Chile; Enrique Pichon Rivière's concept of a teaching matrix.
Socio-educational discussion group led by Stoly Pascos, specialist teacher, Collège Courbet, Romainville, France, and Véronique Truchot, specialist teacher and consultant in international education, France/Canada.
The aims of the group were: a. to identify obstacles to school democracy (internal regulations, administrative norms, etc.); b. to identify conditions necessary for the institution of democracy in schools; c. to assist participants to identify ways of actually implementing school democracy; and d. to encourage the creation of democratic educational projects suited to participants' varying contexts of development.
Key words: attitudes, citizenship, co-operation, awareness- raising, school democracy, self-esteem, project teaching, participation, relationship to authority, responsibility.
The activity was run in five stages. The first consisted of setting the scene by a. each participant suggesting three "basic components" of school democracy; b. in the light of the list thus arrived at, each participant making an individual selection of three components and then choosing a partner with whom to exchange reasons for the selection; and c. all participants pooling thoughts suggested by the different selections. The second stage was devoted to the presentation of the group leaders' experiences in running a school democracy project with pupils of general and applied vocational education. The basic outline of this presentation showed how pupils passed from being governed by desires to being governed by rights and rules. Pupils' awareness of their place in the school (the "institution") developed through their complete participation as actors in the implementation of an educational project grounded in the local reality of Romainville, a small town in the outer Paris suburbs. Between 1992 and 1995, the pupils were able to produce a Guide to the paths of Romainville, an exhibition on the development of the town and a film that told its history.
The transferability of activities to a context outside school led to the creation of a Unesco club whose members (i.e., the pupils) made a film on drug addiction. The projects were considerably helped by support from the local authority, the local police, the local community centre and residents of the Gagarin estate in Romainville, the voluntary movement and a number of ministries. The third stage of the activity was devoted to discussions in sub- groups on the means that participants could use to develop an educational project in their own schools. Fourthly, each sub-group presented a summary of its discussions, and the participants pooled their views, their selection of basic components of school democracy and their suggestions of how to implement democratic projects. Lastly, at the end of the workshop, the participants agreed to set up an exchange network in order to improve the dissemination of information and to combat their isolation.
Materials: pens, large sheets of paper, summary overview of the stages of the Romainville project (available on request: Stoly Pascos, Collège Courbet, 93230-Romainville, France / Véronique Truchot, EIP, 5 rue du Simplon, CH-1207 Geneva, Switzerland).
References: Jeunes Projet Foundation: Le projet pédagogique comme outil pédagogique, Montreal, 1994; Legrand, L.: Une école pour la justice et la démocratie, PUF, Paris, 1995; Rueff Escoubès, C., Moreau, J.-F. and Desgenette, G.: La démocratie dans l'école. Une méthode d'expression collective des élèves sur leur vie scolaire, Syros Alternatives, Paris, 1987; UNESCO: Recommendation on education for understanding, cooperation and international peace relating to human rights and fundamental freedoms, 1974.
Workshop led by Marc Gourlé, teacher, Belgium, with the support of Mame Diarra Bousso Fall, teacher, Thiès, Senegal, and Yasmina Kessir, teacher, Constantine, Algeria.
The aim of this workshop was to suggest how participants might, as a team, work out a number of articles for a set of school rules in which the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Convention on the Rights of the Child would be applied.
Key words: democracy, rights and duties, education, justice, fundamental freedoms, participation.
The workshop ran as follows: a. participants were asked to read extracts from school rules pinned up on the wall and to take note of the above-mentioned Declaration and Convention; b. participants formed four groups with the aim of discussing what they had read and noting their comments on paper. Each group appointed a secretary; c. each group then studied transcripts of case studies on sheets that were pinned up on the wall. Each case represented a situation experienced in schools in different countries and continents (e.g. "children terrorised by older pupils extracting money with menaces"; "a teacher constantly baited by pupils in the classroom"; "a teacher openly ridiculing pupils experiencing learning difficulties"; "a school director unquestioningly accepting adults' versions of events without hearing the pupils' side," etc.); d. in the light of the cases presented, participants were called on to react by playing the role of parent, pupil, teacher or director; the participants thereby formed four groups: parents, pupils, teachers and school authorities; e. each of the groups identified the rights and freedoms which they regarded as having priority in schools; these rights and liberties were compared with articles of the above-mentioned Declaration and Convention; f. on the basis of this selection, the groups wrote four articles of a proposed set of internal rules; g. the different groups came together to decide in common on the final contents of the set of rules. This was then put up on the wall for the concluding summary of the activity.
Materials: Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Convention on the Rights of the Child, case studies, coloured pens and large sheets of paper.
References: Council of Europe: Teaching about human rights in schools: concepts, attitudes and skills, Strasbourg, 1985; Hart, Roger A.: What does children's participation mean? in: Education for Development Bulletin, Unicef, Vol. 3 No. 1, Geneva, May 1992. Leduc, C. and Massy, P.: Pour mieux vivre ensemble. Quebec discussion guide on human rights and duties for young people in schools, Modulo publications, Montreal, 1988.
Discussion group led by Maria-Grazia Parini, educational psychologist, Milan, Italy and Elia Contoz, teacher trainer, Val d'Aosta, Italy.
The proposed aim was to equip participants with tools of educational evaluation so that they could become resource persons in their own working environments.
Key words: change, cultural contexts, evaluation, training, innovation.
The starting point for the proposed work was the following question: in the light of articles 28 and 29 of the International Convention on the Rights of the Child (the child's right to education, and the aims of that education), how can a pupil accept a negative evaluation of his or her learning without there being unfortunate affective and social consequences? In an attempt to answer that question, it was proposed that evaluation should be broken down. It is a complex procedure involving: a. taking into account the psychological, sociological and pedagogical dimensions of teaching; b. understanding the affective aspects of evaluation; c. making the necessary distinction between formative and summative evaluation; d. defining the concept of equal opportunities; e. distinguishing between what was formative and summative; f. being aware of the diagnostic and predictive functions of evaluation; and g. establishing a continuity between evaluation and guidance. Evaluation can be seen as supporting pupils in carrying out their learning. It helps in resolving problems and finding solutions. Thus, evaluation is a factor in building the pupils' identity; it is not, in this sense, discriminatory or selective. Furthermore, in order to maintain its democratic character, evaluation may not be carried out in a closed environment since to educate means to interpret needs and to see them as part of a plurality of skills and interventions. The diversity of resources required for evaluation indicates inclusion rather than exclusion. To this end, there is a constant need to identify obstacles to constructive evaluation: the convictions, symbolic images and values of the learner, the normative influence of organisations, and resistance to change.
Participants were then asked to consider a. what determines the choice of subject matter to be evaluated; and b. what forms of evaluation should be used: methodologies, strategies, procedures and instruments.
In conclusion, participants discussed the situations which predominated in the cultural contexts of their own teaching and related their assessments to articles 28 and 29 of the Convention.
Materials: International Convention on the Rights of the Child, and texts by Maria G. Parini, available from the author.
Workshop led by Michel Bastien, Inspector, Belgian Ministry of Education, and Saliou Sarr, lecturer in history and geography, Thiès Teacher Training College, Senegal.
The aims of the workshop were the following: a. to raise awareness of situations of exclusion in the world and in each participant's professional environment; and b. to suggest action which could be taken against various forms of exclusion in an educational setting.
Key words: co-operation, dignity, rights of the child, exclusion, international governmental organisations (IGOs), international non-governmental organisations (NGOs), partnership, protection of rights.
Workshop stages: a. five case studies were presented, corresponding to actual situations experienced in Romania (among Roma children) and Senegal (the Talibés: beggar children in Koranic schools) on which the workshop leaders had worked developing projects to support and protect the rights of children as part of their respective professional activities; b. each working group was given one case study; c. participants were asked to compare the case studies with the content of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Convention on the Rights of the Child. The aim of the exercise consisted in emphasising the violations of the rights and fundamental freedoms of the children seen in the case studies; and d. participants were then asked to identify the legal means of protecting the rights of these children, and the governmental and non- governmental organisations which were competent to intervene.
The second part of the workshop set out to invite participants to pool their professional experiences in order to make a list - which was not exhaustive - of educational action which could a. make their pupils and parents aware of cases of violations of the rights of children; b. link their school into the project; c. make the local and national authorities aware of the issue; and d. encourage intervention by IGOs and NGOs in the field of violation of rights.
Materials: Case studies available on request from the workshop leaders. UN: Collection of international instruments.
References: Bastien, M., Gourlé, M., Hamaïde, I. and Jospin, B.: Découvrons la Convention des droits de l'enfant, Labor publishers, Brussels, 1995. Apprendre à coopérer in: Entre-Vues, No. 1195-25, Brussels, 1994.
The sum of the activities offered to participants enabled them to identify some useful criteria for interpreting the varied situations that were presented throughout the training seminar.
The first criterion was reflected in the concept of diversity. This expressed above all the differences in behaviour, attitudes and perceptions which reflected our manifold images of reality: witness the extraordinary cultural mix among participants and speakers, in which they were both actors and subjects. Such an awareness should be built up, as too often our interpretation of phenomena and events reflected an ethnocentric view of things. Breaking away from fixed mind-sets opened the way to the culture of otherness at a time when people were turning in upon their own identity.
The second criterion was that of disparity, along a number of axes: North-South, East-West, local, national, international, global, etc. This disparity was a sign of economic, cultural, political and social fractures. Because of the inequality in the protection given to human rights - or quite simply their absence - we had to reinforce the action of the international community in an atttempt to achieve complete respect for them. It was true that protection mechanisms existed, but it was also well known that it was difficult to enforce them in several regions of the world. This touchy issue was brought out particularly in the introductory sessions of the seminar concerning international law on human rights. Disparity endangered social justice for all, as was emphasised by Mr Pierre Adossama, former Minister of Education of Togo and Vice- Chairman of EIP, and by the economist Mr Driss Dadsi. Social justice was thus being undermined by market imperatives, under the influence of which social skills were being eroded and some Third World countries were being condemned to structural dependency.
The third criterion was the paradigm of complexity. Linear models of interpreting phenomena were not sufficient if we were to try to explain the dynamics of changes arising from the interaction of a number of factors which were transforming reality. Their interdependence produced complex pictures of which we could not hope to make sense unless we employed analytical matrices which took the notion of globality into account. To this end, in order to understand and interpret "macroscopic" reality, it appeared apposite to develop teaching methods which encouraged the integration of knowledge into a holistic vision.
The picture that emerged at the end of the seminar also made clear the need to act. The real human rights situation gave cause for concern in a number of ways. Protection of rights was part of a system in which those who invoked them or defended them were largely dependent on the approaches adopted by states whose interests were frequently opposed to such rights. The strengthening of civil society by citizens at the grass-roots appeared to be one of the best methods that could be used to counter arbitrary action and to develop participatory democracy in a spirit of international solidarity that matched the intentions of the International Charter of Human Rights. In this respect, the promotion of education about human rights in formal and non-formal education was to be recognised as one of the main foundations for the legitimacy of democracies. Actions which took root in people's daily lives would help to bring about the vision of a projected world society in which the right to be different was no longer a pretext for staying as one was. "Ethical rights", to borrow the term used by Mr Bokatola to illustrate the notion of future rights - "germinating rights" - could take us a little further along the road to learning a common, planetary language.
© CIFEDHOP 2007