International Day of the Girl Child Lesson Plan

Multimedia Resources and Lesson Plan for Elementary, Middle and High School Students. Includes discussion guide and learning outcomes.

International Day of the Girl
Credit: MY HERO

International Day of the Girl was established by the UN in 2012 to bring awareness to the needs of the 1.1 billion girls in the world. These needs include the right to education, nutrition, legal rights, and medical care, as well as protection from discrimination, violence and child marriage. The day aims to promote their empowerment and the fulfillment of their human rights. 

Recommended Multimedia Resources, Discussion Questions and Activities for Middle School and High School Students


Students watch one or all of these short films about remarkable heroes who devote their lives to making things better for young girls.

Then consider the discussion questions and activities. 


He Named Me Malala - Official Trailer

Produced by:Laurie MacDonald

HE NAMED ME MALALA is a portrait of Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Malala Yousafzai.

Ten Thousand Girls

Producer: Adams Sie

Viola Vaughn runs "10,000 Girls," a project in Senegal, Africa, to help girls with education and vocational training.

I'll take it from here... Because I'm a Girl

Produced by:Raj Yagnik, Shona Hamilton
One in three girls around the world is denied an education by the daily realities of poverty, conflict or discrimination.

Educate Girls

Produced by:Skoll Foundation

In India, Educate Girls works to make education accessible to girls, mobilizing communities to help girls achieve their full potential.

Learn about the lives of these featured girls and the challenges they face. 

Ada Adam Story

By: Mendy Kanu
It's a short documentary about Ada Adams a student at the Children's Foundation Of Technology school in Sierra Leone. In this documentary Ada Adams tells about her life, what she does every day and her family.


Produced by:Cheikh Seck (Mentor)
A film about Oumy, a junior high student from Dakar, Senegal. Oumy speaks about her pursuit of education and the hardships that women in her country face.


Students read the story and watch the films about how having access to a bicycle helps girls go to school in certain parts of the world, and consider the discussion questions and activities. 


A Way Forward

Jacob Seigel-Brielle & Isaac Seigel-Boettner |
A Way Forward tells the story of how something as simple as two wheels empowered these incredible young women to pursue their own dreams.


Produced by:Jacob & Isaac Seigel-Boettner
An Indian girl gains a bicycle, and the will to achieve.

Armene Modi

By: Amanda Molinaro

Armene Modi provides bicycles to girls in rural Indian villages so they can continue their education.

Not only do girls around the world not have equal access to education, there are places where young girls are forced to be child brides and mothers. The film Just a Girl tells the story of three young girls in Nigeria who had their childhoods stolen from them when they became child brides and mothers. 

Just A Girl

By: Yassa Khan
The emotive film shares the voices and stories of three young girls whose childhoods were stolen when they became child brides and mothers in Nigeria.


Additional stories honoring those making a positive difference in the lives of girls. 


Pashtana Durrani

By: Deborah Neff
Pashtana Durrani, who received the Malala Fund Education Champion award for her work on behalf of education for Afghan girls, is determined to continue providing educational opportunities for women and girls, even if she has to resist the Taliban and go underground.

Hazviperi Betty Makoni

By: Wendy Jewell
Hazviperi Betty Makoni founded the Girl Child Network to transform lives.

Emma Watson

By: Maryn Imus
Emma Watson is an English actress who created the HeForShe campaign, which encourages both men and women to fight for gender equality.

Listen & Read Along

Erica Fernandez

By: Daniel Chavez
Erica Fernandez gave a voice to the voiceless and saved her neighborhood.

Discussion Questions

1. What are the challenges girls in countries like Senegal and India encounter when seeking access to education?

2. How do the lives of girls change if they have the opportunity to go to school and receive an education? 

3. How have the groups featured in these films addressed the challenges to education girls face?

4. Do you know of any other people or organizations working to address issues that may be preventing girls from receiving an education? Who are they? Share their story with MY HERO.


Learning Outcomes

Students will develop critical thinking skills as they discuss the barriers girls around the world face regarding education. They will evaluate obstacles that impact the girls' ability to go to school. Students are encouraged to create an action plan. 

A poem written by a 5th-grade student in honor of the International Day of the Girl

The Exquisite Pearls

By: Madhulika Manoharan



Students analyze the art below and discuss the message the artist is conveying.


Celebrating We the Future-Amanda Gorman by Kate Deciccio

By: Kate Deciccio
Amanda Gorman , Young Leader of Social Change- she was named 2015 National Youth Poet Laureate and she is a community leader. Art for the Amplifier Foundation

Save the Girl Child

By: Sathya Raja

Who Run The World? Girls.

By: Kelsey Ghantous

A fun representation of girl power.

Students create an original piece of art using text and images to portray an issue facing girls around the world or to portray an activist working towards a solution to submit to MY HERO. 



Emma Gonzalez and Tyra Hemans were students at Stoneman Douglas School and are gun control advocates working to prevent violence.


Emma Gonzalez

By: Madeline Chu, Boys & Girls Club LB

Gonzalez is a Spokesperson for March For Our Lives.

Tyra Hemans

By: Mariam Tehari, Boys & Girls Club LB

Hemans is an Advocate for March For Our Lives.

Whom do you admire who works to prevent violence?

Create a portrait of your hero to submit to MY HERO.

Resources and Activities for Elementary Students


Students read the story about hero Malala by Avery and review her adjective web. Then analyze the Malala's portrait by Sophie before considering the discussion questions and activities.

Students are encouraged to write a story about their hero with original illustrations to submit to MY HERO. 


Malala Adjective Web
Credit: by Avery

Malala Yousafzai

By: Avery

Malala Yousafzai is a young Pakastani activist for girls' education and won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2014.


By: Sophia Schaefer, Boys & Girls Club LB

Malala, Advocate for Global Girls Education

Discussion Questions and Activities

1. What makes a person a hero?

2. Why do you think Sophie and Avery chose Malala as their hero? 

3. Who is your hero? Create an adjective web like Avery did about your hero. 

4. Create a portrait or other artwork representing your hero and write a story about him or her to submit to MY HERO.

5. Have a Hero Celebration by creating a  display of students' adjective webs, portraits or artwork about heroes, and invite parents, other family members or students to view the display and listen to students' hero stories.  



Laura Nietzer

The International Day of the Girl lesson plan was created by MY HERO Education Outreach Director Laura Nietzer.

Related Pages

Credit: MY HERO
Viola Vaughn
Credit: MY HERO

MY HERO Calendars for use in the Classroom

MY HERO's Teachers Calendar Features Lesson Plans and Multimedia Resources

Teachers Calendar
Credit: MY HERO

Learn about a New Hero Every Day of the Year: Use the MY HERO Calendar in the Classroom


UN International Day of the GIrl
Credit: UN
Day of the Girl
Credit: Day of the Girl


Outstanding essays submitted to MY HERO will be considered for a certificate/t-shirt prize or be featured on the Story Homepage.

Submit your artwork to be entered in the MY HERO art contest or to be exhibited on our Gallery Homepage.


Students can share their Hero Essays, Films and Art through our Create Program

Organizer created on 9/5/2019 1:51:31 PM by Laura Nietzer

Last edited 12/11/2023 3:31:10 PM by Laura Nietzer