Kids, News

World Honours Young Activist With “Malala Day”

Note: This article contains information that some children may find frightening.

Image: Wikipedia
“Malala Day” will celebrate the courage of Malala Yousafzai and bring attention to education inequality around the world. Image: Wikipedia

The United Nations declared Saturday, Nov. 10 “Malala Day.”

It was a special day around the world, honouring a brave Pakistani girl named Malala Yousafzai.

Amid terrible opposition, she stood up for the rights of girls and women. Because of her beliefs, Malala was attacked and injured. She has nearly fully recovered now.

In Pakistan, a militant and terrorist group known as the Taliban believes that girls should not be educated. In Jan. 2009 they issued a ban that said girls are not allowed to go to school. They try to enforce that ban through violent actions.

When she was 11 years old, in 2009, Malala started writing in an online journal (or blog) that was part of the BBC’s news website. She wrote under the name Gul Makai. In the blog, she said girls should be allowed to go to school and learn. She told people about the things the Taliban were doing in her village to stop girls from going to school.

She wrote about how that the Taliban went into people’s houses and searched for textbooks. Malala had to hide her own books under her bed so they would not be taken away. The Taliban also destroyed many schools.

The Taliban were very angry about Malala’s writing. They wanted her to stop advocating for girls’ rights.

On Oct. 9, 2012, as Malala (now 15 years old) was riding home from school, one member of the Taliban climbed aboard her bus and shot her; she was badly wounded. The bus driver managed to speed away, leaving the shooters behind.

Malala was taken to a hospital in England, where doctors saved her life.

She fought hard to recover from her very serious injuries and is now nearly back to normal.

People the world over were touched by Malala’s bravery and her fight against injustice. Many politicians, celebrities and ordinary citizens—including many people in Pakistan—are standing up for Malala.

The United Nations declared Nov. 10 Malala Day and said people should think about the 32 million girls around the world who do not have access to education.

Malala’s bravery has brought attention to the plight of these girls.

She has been nominated for the International Children’s Peace Prize and won Pakistan’s first National Youth Peace Prize. Some people are asking that she be nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.

Malala is still recovering in a hospital in England. She has asked for her textbooks to be brought to her so she can study for an upcoming exam. She will not stop going to school and learning.

By Jonathan Tilly

Writing/Discussion Prompt
Many people have wanted to let Malala know how much they admire her and to wish her a speedy recovery.

Write a letter to Malala and let her know how you feel. If you would like to send it to her, you can use this link.

Reading Prompt: Analysing Texts
Many journalism websites, including TKN, use a person’s full name the first time they mention it in an article (for instance, Malala Yousafzai) and then use the person’s last name only (Yousafzai) throughout the rest of the article. However, TKN’s editor decided to make an exception and use Malala’s first name. Why do you think the editor made this exception for Malala?

Analyse texts and explain how various elements in them contribute to meaning (OME, Reading: 1.7).

nalyse a variety of texts, both simple and complex, and explain how the dif- ferent elements in them contribute to meaning and influence the reader’s reaction (OME, Reading: 1.7).

Grammar Feature: s’
Adding ‘s to a word makes it “possessive.”  There always tends to be some confusion about when to use ‘s or .
There are a number of exceptions, but in general you can follow these rules:

(a) For a noun that is singular, add ‘s to make it possessive (Eugene’s scarf, Chicago’s streets, the earth’s atmosphere).

(b) For a noun that is plural (in other words, it already ends in s) make it possessive by adding only an apostrophe after the s (babies’ parents, kids’ schools, buses’ drivers).

Complete the statements below using ” ‘s ” or ” s’ ”

1. The books ______ covers were all torn up.

2. The dolphin _____________ fin rose above the water.

3. The teams _______________ mascots got into a fight.

4. Malala_______________ message to the Taliban is that she will not be intimidated.

5. The sister_______________ father always had a sour look on his face.

*What helped you figure out which ending to use?