Key stage 3, lesson plan 2

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Objectives/desired outcomes for students

  • to know about different kinds of contemporary slavery and identify common features
  • to know that there have been national laws and international conventions to challenge contemporary slavery
  • to consider why slavery continues when there are laws against it

Curriculum links

Citizenship 1.1b); 1.1c); 1.2a); 1.2b; 1.2c); 2.1a); 2.1b).Find out more about how this links to the curriculum.

Resources needed

Key vocabulary

Case study, slavery, violated


Recap from the previous session. Ask what they learned and whether there are any issues they would like clarified.

Ask students to work in groups and come up with a sentence about what they think it means to be a slave. Share the sentences that groups come up with and record their answers.


1. Case studies - reading and discussion

Remind the students that the previous class included a case study on what has been described as contemporary slavery. Explain that in this lesson they will be given other true case studies to help them identify the features of contemporary slavery.
Split the class into four groups. Give each group a case study (choose four from the case studies with the relevant questions and discussion points). Each group will need to appoint a scribe, a timekeeper and someone as the main narrator to report back. Give each group a set time to read the case study, answer the questions, discuss, and prepare a short presentation for the other groups about their case study.

2. Presentation and audience questions

Each group should make a presentation in their own words about their case, for up to five minutes (the presentation can include drama, art and so on). After each presentation invite and encourage students in the audience to ask questions or make comments.

3. Group discussion

Ask the students to identify some common features of contemporary slavery, having read the case studies, and record them on worksheet 3.2.1(pdf).

After groups have written a few statements, ask them to compare theirs with another group to identify common statements - and attempt to reach a definition of contemporary slavery agreed by the class.


Explain that all countries in the world have passed laws against slavery but some types of slavery continue. Explain that countries have tried to develop a common approach to contemporary slavery through the United Nations.

Distributeworksheet 3.2.2 (pdf) which summarises points from human rights legislation and ask groups to consider how these rights were violated in the case they studied.

Explain that human rights laws and conventions came about because people campaigned for them, and that the focus of the next lesson will be on campaigning against contemporary slavery. Introduce the homework/research task.

Homework/further research

Find out how abolitionists campaigned against Transatlantic slavery and think about which of their ways of campaigning could apply today.


What next?