Rosetta Primary School, Tas: United Nations Assembly

For Celebrating Democracy Week, Rosetta Primary School held a model United Nations Assembly. This was the culmination of five weeks' work investigating the Convention on the Rights of the Child and effectiveness of the work of the United Nations. The project was undertaken by 52 Year 5 students.

by Tony Poynter

The UN General Assembly in session

Teacher Planning

Focus question: How can countries cooperate to improve children's rights?

Year level: 5

Tasmanian Essential Learnings Framework
Related Essential Learning: Social
Responsibility – Acting Democratically

  1. Brainstorm
    Students brainstorm their ideas to the question: 'What do we need to lead a happy and healthy life?'

  2. What is the difference between material and non-material needs and wants?
    Students categorise their lists into material (eg shelter, food) and non-material (eg love) items.

  3. Introducing the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CROC)
    Share the 10-point summary of the CROC (Look Global: Global Perspectives in the Upper Primary Classroom, p 97). Students compare the CROC with their list. What is the same/different?

  4. CROC
    Share the picture book For Every Child – the Rights of the Child in Words and Pictures.

  5. Case Studies
    Students read online case studies from the AUSAID and UNICEF websites and discuss the following questions in groups:

    • Summarise the main problems the children in the case study are experiencing
    • Which right/rights from the CROC does the case study refer to?
    • Is any support available to change the situation for the better? What else could be done? List your ideas. (UNICEF) (AUSAID)

  6. What is the United Nations?
    Students research the United Nations and present their findings as an one-page report.
    Inquiry questions:

    • Purpose – What does the United Nations do?
    • Who – Who are some of the member countries? What do they have to pledge to do?
    • How – How is the United Nations organised? What tasks does each part of the United Nations do?
    • Opinion – What are your thoughts on the effectiveness of the United Nations?

  7. Is the CROC being supported around the world?
    Students research one of the United Nations member countries to find out how well they are following the rights agreed to in the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

    Present the following information on your chosen country as a speech to a Model United Nations Assembly:

    • A brief introduction including LOCATION, POPULATION, HISTORY and ECONOMIC background
    • Statistical information on the standard of HEALTH and EDUCATION and how it compares to Australia's
    • CASE STUDIES of children's lives and experiences related to the Rights of the Child
    • PROGRAMS to solve the main problems facing children in your country
    • YOUR VIEWS on why the Rights of the Child have/have not been followed in your country and the best ways to improve the situation in your country and around the world. (Statistics) (Case Studies) (UNICEF programs)

North Korea delivers their speech.

The Italian delegation give their speech to the UN General Assembly.


Guy, Roslyn 1999, Look Global: Global Perspectives in the Upper Primary Classroom, Curriculum Corporation.
For Every child – the rights of the child in words and pictures 2000, Random House.

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