A Case Study – Explore the Reality of Life in a Community Township on the Cape Flats

Developer’s Name:

Sally Hooper, Ph.D.

Lesson Description – Overview

“We’ve got a voice. We’ve got that right.”

This lesson is based on a case study that used a participatory approach to research. This method emphasizes collective inquiry grounded in experience and social history and seeks out unheard voices by creating safe spaces where they may be heard.

Lesson Objectives:

  • analyze ways in which people can contribute to their community
  • understand the significance of agency and voice in claiming human and civil rights
  • discuss the concept of Ubuntu

Relevant Ontario Curriculum:

Civics and Citizenship Grade 10

A: Political Inquiry and Skill Development

  • A1. Political Inquiry: use the political inquiry process and the concepts of political thinking when investigating issues, events, and developments of civic importance
  • A2. Developing Transferable Skills: apply in everyday contexts skills developed through investigations related to civics and citizenship education, and identify some careers in which civics and citizenship education might be an asset
  • B1. Civic Issues, Democratic Values: describe beliefs and values associated with democratic citizenship in Canada, and explain how they are related to civic action and to one’s position on civic issues (FOCUS ON: Political Significance; Political Perspective
  • B3. Rights and Responsibilities: analyse key rights and responsibilities associated with citizenship, in both the Canadian and global context, and some ways in which these rights are protected or may be infringed upon (FOCUS ON: Political Significance; Objectives and Results)

C: Civic Engagement, Service, and Action

  • C1. Civic Contributions, Inclusion, and Service: analyse the importance of various contributions to the common good, and assess the recognition of diverse beliefs, values, and perspectives, in communities in Canada (FOCUS ON: Political Significance; Stability and Change; Political Perspective
  • C2. Engaged Citizenship and Creating Change: analyse a civic issue of personal interest, and propose and assess methods of creating positive change in their community (FOCUS ON: Political Significance; Objectives and Results; Political Perspective)

English Grade 9 and 10


  1. Developing and Organizing Content: generate, gather, and organize ideas and information to write for an intended purpose and audience
  2. Using Knowledge of Form and Style: draft and revise their writing, using a variety of literary, informational, and graphic forms and stylistic elements appropriate for the purpose and audience;
  3. Applying Knowledge of Conventions: use editing, proofreading, and publishing skills and strategies, and knowledge of language conventions, to correct errors, refine expression, and present their work effectively;
  4. Reflecting on Skills and Strategies: reflect on and identify their strengths as writers, areas for improvement, and the strategies they found most helpful at different stages in the writing process.

Relevant Ontario Curriculum Documents

Human Rights Instruments:

Article 1

  • All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with
    reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.

Article 2

  • Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, colour, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status. Furthermore, no distinction shall be made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or international status of the country or territory to which a person belongs, whether it be independent, trust, non-self-governing or under any other limitation of sovereignty.

Article 13

  1. Everyone has the right to freedom of movement and residence within the borders of
    each State.
  2. Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and to
    return to his country.

Article 23

  1. Everyone has the right to work, to free choice of employment, to just and favourable conditions of work and to protection against unemployment.
  2. Everyone, without any discrimination, has the right to equal pay for equal work.
  3. Everyone who works has the right to just and favourable remuneration ensuring for himself and his family an existence worthy of human dignity, and supplemented, if necessary, by other means of social protection.
  4. Everyone has the right to form and to join trade unions for the protection of his interests.

Article 25

  1. Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control.
  2. Motherhood and childhood are entitled to special care and assistance. All children, whether born in or out of wedlock, shall enjoy the same social protection.

Article 26

  1. Everyone has the right to education. Education shall be free, at least in the elementary and fundamental stages. Elementary education shall be compulsory. Technical and professional education shall be made generally available and higher education shall be equally accessible to all on the basis of merit.
  2. Education shall be directed to the full development of the human personality and to the strengthening of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. It shall promote understanding, tolerance and friendship among all nations, racial or religious groups, and shall further the activities of the United Nations for the maintenance of peace.
  3. Parents have a prior right to choose the kind of education that shall be given to their children.


  • The research study featured in this lesson plan is an excerpt from:Hooper, S. A. (2013). Small Space for Meaningful Participation in Democratic Life? A Community’s Perspectives of Their Involvement in an Early Childhood Education and Care Program. (Unpublished doctoral dissertation). University of Toronto: Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
  • The information at the PowerPoint link below is by Sally Hooper © 2013 all rights reserved:

Preface to the YouTube Video:

The video produced by eNCA (eNews Channel Africa), a 24-hour television news broadcaster, focuses on South African and African stories.

In the series South African Heroes, the featured teachers describe how a preschool in a township on the Cape Flats, a community oppressed and subjugated during Apartheid, became a place of hope, “a place of healing” for all participants – parents, teachers, young children, and members of the larger community – after 1994. Through the teachers’ commitment to their own professional development and dedication to improving their community, the preschool won a Western Cape Education Department award for excellence in grade R (kindergarten) education. The preschool went on to win an award from the national Department of Education.

Materials and Resources:

Lesson Plan Details by Stages of African Epistemology:



Reflect and Communicate

Reflect and Communicate

Lesson Extension

Research and write a report on an individual or group in South Africa that contributed to improving their community and enhancing democracy.



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Mandela Global Human Rights: Peace, Reconciliation and Responsibility Copyright © by Dolana Mogadime (Ed.) Project Lead is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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