Participatory, Multimodal Approaches to Child Rights Education in Global Contexts: Reflections on a Study with Schoolchildren in Uganda and Canada


  • Shelley Jones Royal Roads University
  • Kathleen Manion


child rights education, rights and responsibilities, child participation, multimodality, Uganda, Canada


Globally, we have much to learn about fulfilling international child education rights, particularly in times of crisis, as evidenced during the global COVID-19 pandemic. Although the right of children to know their rights is enshrined in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, and other documents, such as the African Charter on Rights and Welfare of the Child, child rights are rarely introduced to children as part of their formal learning experience in school, because children are deemed unable to understand the concepts of rights (and responsibilities) (Alderson, 2008; Jerome, 2018). This lack of child-rights education means children are denied opportunities for empowerment: e.g., awareness and knowledge needed for self-advocacy, advocacy for other children with respect to the ability to claim and exercise their rights (Covell et al., 2017; Wabwile, 2016). Drawing on a case study conducted in Uganda and Canada, this paper discusses how participatory, empowering, multimodal, and contextually-responsive/sensitive approaches to child rights education enables children to engage meaningfully in learning about their rights.

Author Biographies

Shelley Jones, Royal Roads University

a Professor at Royal Roads University, has teaching experience at all levels (pre-primary to tertiary) in diverse international contexts (Tanzania, Uganda, Canada, England, and Japan). Her research and publications are focused on the areas of children’s rights, gender and education, girls and women’s empowerment, and feminist participatory action research. Email: 

Kathleen Manion

is a Professor at Royal Roads University and an Associate at the International Institute of Child Rights and Development. With thirty years experience in research, social and community services and academia, Kathleen’s academic and practice interests focus on systems that support children to thrive. 



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How to Cite

Jones, S., & Manion, K. (2023). Participatory, Multimodal Approaches to Child Rights Education in Global Contexts: Reflections on a Study with Schoolchildren in Uganda and Canada. Engaged Scholar Journal: Community-Engaged Research, Teaching, and Learning, 9(2). Retrieved from

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