Sample Lesson

CHILD LABORERS

Millions of children around the world are forced to become laborers at a young age. They work for long hours without breaks for rest or play. Some work in physically difficult or dangerous jobs. Others endure emotional or physical abuse as servants. Children work to survive, provide for their family, or pay off parental debt. Not only do these kids miss out on childhood, but they also are denied the education needed to improve their situation. God intends for children to grow and flourish in a just society. As the people of God, we need to stand against unfair treatment of kids. Because God is looking out for the rights of children, we must also.

Scripture

Psalm 72:12
“For he (God) will deliver the needy who cry out, the afflicted who have no one to help.”
Additional references: Isaiah 10:1-2; Amos 2:6-7a; Luke 2:52

Child Labor Video

Child Labor Preview from Tami Snowden on Vimeo.

Hitting the Bricks Simulation

Reflect On It

Complete the Cycle of Poverty diagram. Fill in each blank with a word from the box:

1. Explain how poverty is both a cause and effect of child labor.
2. Discuss the advantages of getting an education. How has school helped you become the person you are now? How will it prepare you for the future?

What is God saying to me?

Prayer

Hitting Home

» Raj, a Child Laborer
Plan to do this activity on a day when all participating members of your family are home at the beginning and end of a 12-hour period. For example, choose a day when everyone is home at 7:30 am and 7:30 pm. At 7:30 in the morning, gather your family. First, set an alarm clock or watch to go off in 12 hours, at 7:30 pm. Then read Part 1 of “Raj, a Child Laborer” on page 12. When the alarm goes off at 7:30 in the evening, assemble your family again. Have each person name a few of the things he did during the day. Explain that Raj has been sitting at the carpet loom, continually tying rug knots since your last meeting. Turn to pages 12-13 and read Part 2 of Raj’s story together.

» How Does It Feel?
Find and complete the Word Search on page 13. Discuss the eight words that describe how it feels to be a child laborer. Then think of words to describe how it must feel to be released from this labor and regain your childhood.

Take A STAND!

Memorize Psalm 72:12. Use your prayer card to pray for child laborers. Find out what your church is already doing to minister to exploited children and how you might get involved. Get informed, pray, and speak up.

Visit the International Justice Mission website. Sign up to receive free updates about what’s going on around the world and find ways to join in the pursuit of justice for oppressed children (www.ijm.org).

Most child laborers in India are Dalits (dah-leets, untouchables). Considered the lowest of the low, Dalit families are denied access to jobs and education. Partner with the Dalit Freedom Network to give a child the opportunity to attend school at a Dalit Education Center. These centers teach the inherent value and dignity of all people. Your monthly gift provides for a child’s tuition, uniforms, school supplies, noon meals if necessary, and his teacher’s salary (www.dalitnetwork.org).

Find out about the history of child labor in your own country. For the United States, go to (www.historyplace.com/unitedstates/childlabor). For those living in other countries, do a web search using “child labor + your country.”