So we’ve all done it. We hear our alarm go off in the morning and think “there is not one place I want to be in less.”
We’re referring to school, and how sometimes, it can feel like a total pain to have to go to. Maybe there’s drama. Or you really can’t stand your science teacher. Or maybe you just hate having to get up early in the morning to go. We get it. Going to school can be a pain.
However, for some girls, going to school is their ultimate dream. Because for them, it’s their only way for them to have a chance at achieving their dreams and creating a better life for themselves. So, this month, we’re talking about school.
What does it mean to be a student? What do you like about school? What would it mean if you couldn't go? What happens to girls who aren’t able to get an education? And how do educational disparities affect everyone, even in America? We are diving into all of that, and more this month.
Check it out:
- What would it mean to you if only your brothers were allowed to go school? How would that affect your sense of self?
- What do you want to be when you grow up? How will an education help you get there? How would you get there if you were unable to go to school? Would you still be able to accomplish that dream?
- What are some examples of educational disparities in your own community? In your own country?
- What are some challenges that you personally experience in going to school? Is there drama? Are you struggling with a certain subject? What are some challenges your peers are struggling with? Are their ways to help with these challenges?
- How would your school day be different if you only got one meal a day? How would it be different if your school teachers didn’t know how to read?
Learn More. Grab a computer, a tablet, or a book and explore what day-to-day life in schools around the world look like. (For example, check out the Indonesian flag ceremony or Thailand’s daily school assembly or Denmark’s forest kindergartens here!) What do school lunches in other countries look like? What are unique school traditions in each country? Share what you find with your troop and for bonus points, see if you can get a teacher to try out another country’s school tradition!
- Girls think about the chores in your homes for which you are responsible, brainstorm as a group the list on the chalkboard or whiteboard.
- Let’s ask ourselves this: "Are there any chores here that may be assigned by gender within families?"
- Discuss the stereotypes and cultural values about gender, the division of labor, and our perceptions of the fairness of this division.
- Consider the following situation: What if we had so many daily chores to complete that you could not attend school? Clarify that in this particular situation, these chores are very important and help to support their parents and siblings—maybe even extended family. As there is no free, public education system, their families cannot afford to send them to school due to school fees. Instead of going to school, the students would be required to work at or near their homes during the day.
- Write a journal entry in response.
- Share your thoughts with the group.
Work in pairs or small groups and research the reasons behind why some societies and cultures choose to keep girls out of school. Answer the following questions: How many children do not have access to primary education? How many of these are girls? Name one obstacle or barrier to girls' education.
What can YOU do today to make a difference? The answers to many challenges lie in you. What can you do to help the girls around you and the girls around the world? Give a presentation to your class? Start a conversation on social media? Host a fundraiser? Whether you do something big or small, YOU can make a difference.