For Educators

The Global Lives Project develops enriching content and lesson plans for teachers addressing themes of globalization and cross-cultural awareness through the lens of new media. ………..

Unheard Stories: Building Empathy through the Global Lives Project

Unheard Stories Cover This standalone two-week unit utilizes the Global Lives Project video library to engage students in storytelling activities that help them to better understand themselves and others. The unit is broken up into three parts, leading students on a continuum from self-understanding to understanding of others to empathy and social justice in society. Before trying to understand others, students first need to understand themselves, including how their values and backgrounds shape their perceptions of others. Each part contains lesson overviews with goals, main activities and assessment suggestions. Detailed lesson plans follow the overviews, and include duration, materials (including suggested GLP clips), warm-up exercises, activities, assessments, homework and resources.

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Additional Curricula Coming Soon:

Culture at Home and Around the World This week-long exercise was originally used in a 7th grade Social Studies classroom in Madison, WI, to supplement the unit on “culture.” Using a worksheet that organizes six elements of culture (food, beliefs, government, ways of expressing ideas and emotions, ways of passing down values and history, and groups), students watch a different Global Lives film each day, marking on their sheet where they see a different element of culture expressed in the film. The teacher then guides discussions around the similarities and differences in culture and the way culture is expressed around the world.

The Lives of Others

This essay prompt was originally used in a first-year college composition course, but would be useful for many secondary and university-level students. After viewing a 15-minute segment of one of the films as a class and discussing the experience of watching the film, students watched any other 15-minute segment of any film, and wrote a 3-4 page essay that reflected on their expectations, on the process of watching, and on how watching the film affected their sense of community.

Zhanna and me

The exercise was originally used in a second-grade classroom to expose students to the idea that everyone is similar and different from them. They watched a series of excerpts of Zhanna, the five year old on-screen participant from Kazakhstan. Using Venn diagrams, the students filled in aspects of Zhanna’s life and their lives where there were similarities and differences. They used the Venn diagrams to write a short essay about how their lives compared with Zhanna’s. Contact us at to receive previews of these resources or to contribute lesson plans to this list.