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.
PLAIN LANGUAGE VERSION:
When children are born, they are free and each should be treated in the same way. They have reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a friendly manner.
What is special about us is our humanity, our being human. As humans, we can think and articulate thoughts; we also have a sense of right and wrong, which is our conscience.
Equal does not mean that we are all the same. Each of us is different in our own special way. But we also have the common qualities that make us all humans. So each of us should be treated with respect and dignity and treat others in the same way.
To be born free means that all people have an equal right to freedom. But freedom does not mean that we can do anything we want, nor can freedom for some mean limiting the freedom of others. Though we are born free, we live in a community that functions because there is an understanding among its members; in other words, it has rules and requires responsibilities.
The Finger Print World
Take one large sheet of paper. Ask each student to make only one thumb print on that single sheet, with a range of colors picked by or distributed randomly among students. Ask students to describe the overall result in one sentence. Point to a few individual prints and ask a each student to describe an individual print. In the description, several qualities, such as the color, the lines of the thumb print, the location on the paper, etc., will come out. Then discuss the following issues: are these the same or different? what makes each of them unique? what makes them similar? shall we look at them as a group of things or as individual things? Relate this to human beings.
Hint: emphasize the individual uniqueness of each print while recognizing that each thumb print also belongs to a wider category (thumb, human thumb).