English Reading Practice

Human Right Number 15:
Right to a Nationality

1. Watch the video at the top of the page.

2. Read the story "Right to a Nationality" just below it.

3. Do the exercise at the bottom of the page.

Here is the Right to a Nationality video. You can watch it in your own language at www.youthforhumanrights.org. (Simply click the word "language" at the top of their homepage.)

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights describes 30 basic rights that each person has, simply because he or she is human.

This is human right number 15 (the simplified version):

"15. Right to a Nationality. We all have the right to belong to a country."

Now read the short story about this important human right.

Right to a Nationality  

Parker loves school, especially his social studies classes. Today, the teacher discusses nationality. Parker is a little bit confused.

When he gets home, he asks his mother, "What does nationality mean?"

His mother explains, "Our nationality is based on the nation that we live in. It means that we are citizens of this country. We identify ourselves with this country, with this nation. Does that make sense?"

Parker says, "It depends ... Is it good to be a citizen?"

"Well," his mother smiles, "you get help and protection from the country and you can participate in elections. This is when you help choose the people who will lead the country."

"That sounds great!" Parker exclaims, "Then I want to be a citizen of this house! I want to get help and protection and chose who will lead the family!"

"Hey, not so fast!" his mother laughs. "The right to a nationality is an important right and it comes with responsibility too."


"Yes, Think of a family," his mother explains. "You get to live in this house and identify yourself as part of this family. The house gives you protection and you work to make the family better. You have responsibilities. You have chores. You do things to make the family and household run smoothly. It is the same with nationality. You are a citizen of this country so you have a responsibility to be a helpful citizen."

"Oh, I think I understand," Parker says. "Nationality is pretty cool then. I am glad we have it!"

"Yes," his mother agrees, "me too!"

And now, practice:

Exercise 01

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