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Lessons for Integration of Human Rights Education in Social Studies Classrooms

  • 1.  Lessons for Integration of Human Rights Education in Social Studies Classrooms

    Posted 02-13-2016 11:08:00 AM

    Since 2013, a group of NJ social studies educators have been preparing lesson plans designed to facilitate integration of human rights education content and strategies in teaching of the NJ social studies standards. This initiative is an outgrowth of work being done by the Collaborative Action, Policy and Action Committee of Human Rights Educators USA.

    Led by HRE USA steering committee member and longtime NCSS member Bill Fernekes, project team members authored the lessons, had the lessons reviewed by peers and experts in the field, field-tested the lessons with students, and then completed final revisions based upon student and educator feedback. The lessons use a common template that highlights linkages to the 2014 NJ social studies standards, Common Core standards (history and social science connections to language arts), and which provides assistance in modifying the lessons for students with limited English proficiency and other individual needs. While the lessons are focused on meeting the NJ social studies standards, their content is broadly applicable to many other state social studies standards. Lessons are available as Word documents and in PDF format.  A second group of lessons is currently being developed, with a launch date for the second set of lessons scheduled for winter 2017.

    Interested social studies educators can access the lessons by going to the HRE USA website at and clicking on "Publications", then "HRE Curriculum Integration Guide."  The project team welcomes your comments and suggestions as the project moves forward.  Send comments and suggestions to Bill Fernekes at

    William Fernekes
    Lecturer-Rutgers Graduate School of Education
    Flemington NJ