Human Rights Activities

Introduction >> Activities >> Resources

Following are several activities designed to encourage group understanding and analysis of human rights topics.

Activity 1: Problem, Tree Solution Tree
In this two-session activity,  participants list specific problems as the ‘leaves’ of a tree. The facilitator then leads participants to search out the branches of that tree, the trunk, and the roots. The idea is to show the connections between various issues and their root causes. In the second session, participants take those root causes and brainstorm solutions, working their way out from the roots to the branches and then the leaves– things we can do today, and an ideal community we can work towards.

Activity 2: Telling Our Stories
In this two-version activity, participants use either personal stories or interviews to explore human rights issues and terms.

Activity 3: Human Rights through Sticky Notes
Participants discuss what they want for themselves, their families, and their communities and relate these desires to human rights
— those we should have as Americans but that some of us are denied.

Activity 4:  Four Theories of Poverty
These activities familiarize the participants in the idea that public policy has been shaped by different ideas about the causes of poverty.  They should be done in sequence.

  • Theories of Poverty Lesson this document ready to translate This is an overview with an article. Basically, participants read the article and discuss. It is useful to use this along with the Slides below, although they can be used separately to illustrate what the theories are. 
  • Four Theories of Poverty Slides These are useful for driving home the different theories of poverty. The first several slides define the four theories discussed in the article above. The next several slides show how these theories play out in a specific case study (Hurricane Katrina) Then there are a whole bunch of slides you should use for discussion– what theories are at play in the image, and why?

An action activity designed uncover issues affection participants through guided questions.

Activity 6:   A powerpoint presentation introducing the meaning and evolution of human rights.

Activity 7: Human Rights Bingo This activity can be used as a supplement for readings, film screenings, and presentations. Participants identify instances of specific human rights as being either upheld or violated based on the context.