Before reading the article:
On Feb. 15, thousands of students across Europe walked out of schools in a coordinated protest to demand action on climate change. These demonstrations were inspired by an unlikely role model: Greta Thunberg, a 16-year-old activist, who has been cutting class weekly since September to stage sit-ins at the Swedish Parliament and demand government action to address climate change.
In December 2018, Greta was invited to give a speech at the United Nations Climate Change COP24 Conference. Watch it below, and then answer the following questions:
• What stands out to you about Greta?
• Which lines in her speech did you find the most impactful and why?
• Do you think youth activists, like Greta, can make a difference in the world? Why or why not?
Now, read the article, “Becoming Greta: ‘Invisible Girl’ to Global Climate Activist, With Bumps Along the Way,” and answer the following questions:
1. The author begins the article by writing, “It’s complicated being Greta.” What evidence does she give in the following paragraphs to support that statement? Why is being Greta so complicated?
2. What cause is Greta advocating and how is she promoting it?
3. What are some of Greta’s most notable character traits? How do these traits make her an effective leader? According to her, how do they also make being a leader hard?
4. Why did Greta become an activist for climate change?
5. Greta has suffered from depression throughout her adolescence. What has helped her through it?
6. What kind of impact has her activism had on her family and the world?
7. How has Greta’s public role changed her life? Give three examples.
Finally, tell us more about what you think:
What do you think about Greta and her fight to stop climate change?
What issues or causes are you most passionate about? If you were to organize a campaign to bring attention to one of them, what might that look like? What changes would you be willing to make in your personal life to support your cause? How could you spread awareness about the issue to your family, your community and the world? What actions might you take to bring about change?
What impact do you think your efforts could have on your own life? On the world?