Citizenship (Ages 11-14)
Citizenship: Democracy & Human Rights
Miriam's Vision Citizenship Guidance
Different Needs, Common Ground


Miriam’s Vision is about building an inclusive, non-violent society, respecting fundamental rights. This cannot be over-emphasised to students, whenever the opportunity arises.

This module works well with:

For ease of reference, we will often refer to the 2005 London bombings as “7/7” (seventh day of the month of July).

All modules in Miriam’s Vision use the four-part Miriam’s Story video package (total 8 minutes) to set the context of the resource for students. It is housed on Youtube.

The Miriam's Vision Citizenship module consists of a set of lesson plans with incorporated guidance notes, intended to be used flexibly.

Downloadable electronic resources and others are listed at the beginning of each lesson plan and highlighted within the plans for ease of reference. We have provided bespoke resources that are not dependent on internet access in the classroom. You will need projection equipment. You have everything you need on this website to deliver Miriam's Vision in your classroom.

Timings are not included, as we know you will wish to adapt and select according to the needs of your class. We have assumed consecutive sessions delivered as your timetable permits.

We have not included suggestions about differentiation other than to offer some variety of input / expectation in places.

You will need to be aware of possible sensitivities around this topic. Some students may have been directly or indirectly affected by terrorism themselves and there are potential religious sensitivities.

The Miriam’s Vision Citizenship Scheme of Work may be preceded by the Miriam’s Vision PSHE module (two to three sessions). You may choose to focus on one or other curriculum area, or teach both together. However, the PSHE sessions (about personal response to inevitable adversity) do help to provide context for the Citizenship module (about democracy).

The module subtitle, Different Needs, Common Ground refers to the balance that must be achieved between different interested parties in the areas of human rights and democratic process.

Module overview

Sessions one and two introduce the Human Rights Act and ask students to think about how we should protect human rights in an age of extremism.

Sessions three to five concern democratic change. Students consider how to make change in ways that are non-violent, democratic and respect the rights of others. These ideas are developed through a case study of campaigns for and against a third runway at Heathrow airport. The case study has been chosen to illustrate the diversity of strategies available to affect change.

Session six requires the group to generate a topic that is of interest to them (personal or local to the school or its area) and apply principles they have explored in the previous sessions to a role-play debate. There is also a vital opportunity for reflection at the end of the Scheme of Work.

Themes are stand-alone sessions that have been added in response to feedback. Thematic sessions that particularly complement Citizenship include

  • Terrorism: What? When? Where? can be used if students express interest in the context of the 7/7 London bombings. The issue of violent extremism is not directly tackled in the curricular Miriam's Vision lesson plans. However, curiosity is natural, and this Add-On looks at the context of terrorism and some historical precedent for violent extremism. Five concise case studies of organisations and individuals include that which relates to 7/7.
  • Risk / Benefit can be used if students express anxiety, for example about using public transport in light of the content of this module, or about being in crowded public spaces after the Manchester Arena attack in 2017. It explores the nature of risk and the relationship between risk and benefit.


National Curriculum requirements covered

Purpose of study

A high-quality citizenship education helps to provide pupils with knowledge, skills and understanding to prepare them to play a full and active part in society. In particular, citizenship education should foster pupils’ keen awareness and understanding of democracy [and] government... Teaching should equip pupils with the skills and knowledge to explore political and social issues critically, to weigh evidence, debate and make reasoned arguments. It should also prepare pupils to take their place in society as responsible citizens.



  • acquire a sound knowledge and understanding of how the United Kingdom is governed, its political system and how citizens participate actively in its democratic systems of government
  • develop a sound knowledge and understanding of the rule of law and the justice system in our society and how laws are shaped and enforced
  • develop an interest in, and commitment to, participation in volunteering as well as other forms of responsible activity, that they will take with them into adulthood
  • are equipped with the skills to think critically and debate political questions.

Key Stage 3

Teaching should develop pupils’ understanding of democracy, government and the rights and responsibilities of citizens. Pupils should use and apply their knowledge and understanding while developing skills to research and interrogate evidence, debate and evaluate viewpoints, present reasoned arguments and take informed action.

Pupils should be taught about

  • the development of the political system of democratic government in the United Kingdom, including the roles of citizens [and] Parliament.
  • the precious liberties enjoyed by the citizens of the United Kingdom
  • the nature of rules and laws and the justice system, including the role of the police and the operation of courts and tribunals
  • the roles played by public institutions and voluntary groups in society, and the ways in which citizens work together to improve their communities (including opportunities to participate in school-based activities)