Take Action

In FIRE IN OUR HEARTS, BYkids filmmaker Janu Jayshree Kharpade sheds a personal light on how the widespread availability of a good education can contribute to economic development, civil rights and socio-economic upward mobility.

When thinking about the human right to universal access to education, consider Article 26 in the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights:

(1) Everyone has the right to education. Education shall be free, at least in the elementary and fundamental stages. Elementary education shall be compulsory. Technical and professional education shall be made generally available and higher education shall be equally accessible to all on the basis of merit.

(2) Education shall be directed to the full development of the human personality and to the strengthening of respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms. It shall promote understanding, tolerance and friendship among all nations, racial or religious groups, and shall further the activities of the United Nations for the maintenance of peace.

(3) Parents have a prior right to choose the kind of education that shall be given to their children.

For Teachers: Research

Ask your students to research the availability of education in the United States, India and Kenya. In each country, compare what kind of education is available to the lower classes versus the middle and upper classes. How does the widespread availability of a good education contribute to economic development, civil rights and socio-economic upward mobility? In what ways is access to a good education a class issue? How is it a human rights issue? Explain.

For Students: Reflect

After watching FIRE IN OUR HEARTS, consider how your view of your own right to an education has perhaps changed. How might this new understanding affect your studies as you continue your education? Why is “the right to an education” a basic, universal human right? How does your attitude towards your own education differ from the attitudes of the girls featured in FIRE IN OUR HEARTS? To what do you attribute this difference?

For All Of Us: Respond

  1. Host a community or private screening of FIRE IN OUR HEARTS to raise awareness of the challenges facing the tribal girls in India and how storytelling through film can deepen our understanding of global issues. Email info@bykids.org for more information.
  2. Write a letter to the editor of your local paper. Explain in the letter what you learned from FIRE IN OUR HEARTS regarding the importance of equal access to an education and why everyone should care. See: www.campaignforeducationusa.org/get-involved
  3. Blog about how the universal right to an education is an international and domestic human rights issue at www.actionaid.org/what-we-do/education.
  4. Sign a petition or start one of your own to raise awareness about the inequality surrounding educational access at: www.change.org/topics/education.

Created and written by Big Picture Instructional Design for BYkids.