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Human Rights Education in Asian Schools Volume II

Working with Children

Yagya Bahadur Limbu

I am a teacher at the Shree Bhanu Secondary School in Dhankuta district, Nepal. The school is on the top of a hill. It has about 400 students.

I have been teaching there for seven years. Three years ago, I had a chance to work with children on children's rights. I have been working with them ever since. I organized a child awareness group (CAG) in my school. I am its guardian teacher.

It is wonderful to work with my students. I notice that they are more polite and friendly than before. They are especially enthusiastic about working for children's rights.

As my students and I often discuss their problems and rights, I learn their psychology, which then helps me teach them more effectively. We have also developed a close relationship.

CAG programs include cleaning the school compound and beautifying the garden. The headmaster and teachers are happy about our activities and the students are satisfied with their work.

The CAG publishes a monthly magazine containing articles written by students on children's rights and discrimination between sons and daughters. Students exchange ideas through the magazine. They also learn how to write well and develop their language skills.

The CAG also hosts debates, quizzes, poetry writing contests, sports competitions, and so on, which help students develop their mental and physical abilities, leadership capacity, and discipline.

The CAG has done much to raise our community's awareness of children's rights. The students took a questionnaire to the community to get to know it better. The questions related to children's development, children's protection, exploitation of children and women, community management, sanitation and governmental bodies. After learning about the community, the students then put up posters in public places to make people aware of children's rights, vaccination, nutrition and so on.

The weekly market near my school has a community communication center, where the students perform a serial drama, the theme of which is pariwartan (change). I wrote and directed the play. It focuses on the exploitation of children and women, and on the bad effect of alcohol, the dowry custom and other practices that should be changed. We always draw a big, enthusiastic crowd.

I am very fortunate. Besides teaching, I have the opportunity to help my school and community through the CAG. I love working with the children. And the subject of children's rights as taught by INSEC is the subject that I like most.

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