the world, 250 million children are working to earn money
for their families, 125 million work full time.
Many work in the sex trades. The conditions under
which they labor are often brutal --including the traffic
of children for pornography and prostitution. The
conditions under which these children work are brutal,
and they have no way out, unless they risk death, yet
they risk death from sexually transmitted diseases or
violence from their handlers or customers.
CORE QUESTION: What
economic conditions forced children to seek prostitution
and pornography? Why do parents put their children
up for collateral to repay debts? Are there ways out of
it? Are there ways to stop it? Why has there been
limited success in ending child sexual trafficking?
TIME REQUIRED: Two
40-minute period-- with homework and presentations that
could extend the discussion into additional days.
SUGGESTED GRADE LEVELS:
This lesson is useful for mature high school students
in a World History or Global Issues classroom setting.
The topic needs the seriousness to be effectively discussed,
but please be aware that the topic may not be appropriate
to be discussed in all settings.
Visual arts – when
used in conjunction with the photo essay lessons on this
JERSEY CORE CONTENT STANDARDS: 6.1: 10-13; 6.2:
9-11; 6.3: 9,12,14; 6.4: 9-13; 6.5 13-5; 6.6 13-15; 6.7:
11-12; 6.8: 12-17.
will be able to describe the extent of the problem as
the international community sees it; evaluate the
analysis of the various international agencies and organizations;
determine whether national sovereignty ("it's my
country--you stay out of our affairs") is a valid
answer to not allowing international agencies to monitor
or remedy the problems. Students will be able to
synthesize responses to the critical needs of developing
countries that are troubled by child sexual trafficking
A basic discussion of the issue of child labor should
have been done prior to this...this is NOT a topic that
you would want to lead with. PUSH and PULL factors
Human Rights Watch offers
first hand testimony and recommendations for action on
specific international agreements and protocols. PROMISES
BROKEN is a good start. International
Labour Organization's report from their International
Programme on the Elimination of Child Labour.
Clicking the link will bring up Adobe Acrobat Reader (this
is a PDF document). The document is 78 pages long--pages
24-26 of the document deal with the topic of sexual trafficking
of children and can be printed out to provide the students
the basic information to establish a foundation for discussion.
If you have access to a computer
lab, have students access a database
on sexual trafficking in various countries in the world.
The database is managed by EPCAT (End Child Prostitution,
Child Pornography and Trafficking in Children for Sexual
Purposes), an agency funded by the European Union and
UNICEF. It displays economic statistics, information
about that country's sexual trafficking of children, international
agreements that the country has signed and is supposed
to be following. Students would research a particular
country and develop a presentation about it. This
EPCAT page has a list for basic FAQs
Agencies with an interest in eliminating the trafficking
Human Rights Watch--they
have several large country reports which can be gleaned
for information on the subject....such as NEPAL.
Save the Children
International Labour Organization
An excellent documentary
film, SACRIFICE, on Burmese women and children who are
trafficked into Thailand for the sex trades. The
film can be ordered at this web
site. Then there is a statement
by the Royal Thai Embassy in Washington on this issue.
The United Nations Education,
Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO)
has a list of agencies concerned with the issue.
Country presentations (or cooperative regional presentations-since
much of the trafficking of children for sex takes place
within regions--suppliers and consumers) could be arranged.
A homework assignment based
on the suggested questions above or additional questions
that you add--can be in the form of an interpretive essay
or a DBQ (Document-Based Question format for those familiar
with the AP Exams). Since students are being asked
to interpret, allow them the flexibility of coming up
with ingenious solutions to the enforcement problems.
A quiz on the whole issue of children's rights (if you
have used more than just this lesson) could be constructed.
A further enrichment exercise could be constructed to
allow students to research other labor-related abuses
in different countries around the world through a coordinated
effort to use the resources of Human Rights Watch, Amnesty
International, Save the Children and other organizations.
Classroom presentations could follow.