Online Resources - This is my life These are my rights

Aids education activity ideas

- It is my right to get the information I need

- It is my right to say NO

- It is my right to protect myself from unwanted touch

- It is my right to believe what I choose to believe

- It is my right to change my mind

- It is my right to say what I think

- It is my right to like myself and others

- It is my right to love who I want to love

- It is my right to say YES

- It is my right to make my own choices about sex

- It is my right to stand up for myself

- It is my right to feel proud of who I am

Activity 1: Rights

This activity is to help young people personalise their constitutional rights. Many people do not understand these rights in a way that they can apply to their own lives. They see rights as something separate from themselves.
This affects HIV/AIDS education because many young people do not feel entitled to claim their right to say no to sex or insist on a condom.


To enable learners to:

- Understand their personal rights.

-Recognise that no matter who they are, these rights apply to them.

- Claim these rights in their own lives.


Show learners the poster and have a general discussion about what it illustrates.

Ask learners to pick four rights that appeal to them and to write them down.

Instruct learners to write a few lines about what each of their chosen rights means by giving an example of how they can apply this right in their own lives. For example: It is my right to say what I think. This means I can tell my friends that I think it’s okay to be a virgin.

Activity 2 : Responsibilities


To encourage learners to:

- Recognise that human rights need responsible individuals.

- Personalise their own responsibilities as they claim their rights.


- Discuss how it is hypocritical to claim our own rights without recognising those of others. A true democracy works only when our rights are equal to, not more important than, someone else’s. For example: You have a right to decide who you want to have sex with, but this does not give you the right to force that person.

- Compromise, discussion, negotiation and acceptance can make sure that our rights promote a fair society.

- Divide the learners into small groups of three or four and give each group a few of the rights from the poster to discuss.

- Ask the groups to talk about the responsibilities that go with each right. For example: If I claim the right to love who I want to love, then I have the responsibility to respect that other people have the right to love who they want to love. People may disagree. We must accept the choices others make, e.g. accept that my friend loves someone of the same sex even though I disagree with homosexuality etc.

Ask each group to share the right that caused the most argument and have a general discussion about how to balance our rights and responsibilities. Talk about how this affects the way we behave in our relationships with others.

Follow-on Activity

- Get a copy of the South African Constitution.

- Ask learners to match the rights on the poster with their Constitutional Rights. For example: The right to say what I think is enshrined in our rights to freedom of opinion, expression and petition.

- Discuss what other rights we have that are not listed on the poster.

- Talk about how young people’s rights are often ignored or abused by adults.

Brainstorm ways of dealing with this.

—The Teacher/Mail & Guardian, May 15, 2000.

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