How One Child Can Change the World

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SWBAT examine Malala Yousafzai's dream of girls everywhere getting an education.

Big Idea

Students will examine Malala Yousafzai's dream of girls everywhere getting an education.


1 minutes


4 minutes

Education is the great equalizer and I want my students to understand and value their opportunity to obtain a free public education.  I inform them that today we will be studying about a teen from Pakistan who risked her life standing up for her right to get an education.  I write Malala Yousafzai's name on the white board, along with how to pronounce it (mah-LAH-luh yoo-suf-ZAY).  I explain to my students that in 2007, Malala's country was taken over by a group called the Taliban.  The Taliban forced the people to follow harsh new laws.  Women and children were no longer allowed to have jobs, go shopping, or go to school, but Malala defied these new laws and one day in October 2012, the Taliban nearly killed her because of it.

Malala's Dream

20 minutes

When Malala began speaking up for her right to attend school and was attacked by the Taliban, she became an inspiration to people all over the world.  She has even been awarded the International Children's Peace Prize because of her efforts to protect the rights of children.  To find out more about Malala's struggle, we read the Scholastic News article "Malala's Dream" and answer some text-based questions (see attached Powerpoint).

Thinking Stems

20 minutes

After reading the Scholastic News article "Malala's Dream," we completed a Critical Thinking Stems worksheet (see attachment).  This worksheet allowed students to independently reflect upon what they had read.


15 minutes

To close the lesson, we reviewed the information students wrote on their Critical Thinking Stems worksheet.  During a speech in New York in July 2013, Malala said, "One child, one teacher, one book, and one pen can change the world." (see attached Powerpoint slide).  I asked my students to reflect upon this quote and tell me what they think it means.