Ideas for International Youth Day

Victoria Haughton
25th July 2017

Inspire young minds on International Youth Day using these reflective and thought-provoking activities

12 August marks International Youth Day and is designed to help highlight the achievements of young people from across the world, as well as being a platform for discussing on-going global issues. With this year’s theme focusing on conflict prevention and social justice, we’ve scoured the site and picked the very best resources to help young people engage with different societal issues.

The United Nations and global citizenship

As this is an awareness day designated by the United Nations, it’s worth taking the time to introduce students to the UN and its work using this comprehensive lesson. Similarly, these global citizenship plans are ideal for exploring the interconnectedness of the world with younger learners.

Alternatively, why not use the medium of film to help pupils think more broadly about democracy and equality with help from this handy guide?

Conflict and peace

Help younger classes to understand conflict and resolution using this selection of worksheets. Alternatively, encourage older students to empathise with individuals affected by war with this role-play activity, in which they’ll study asylum seekers and the difficulties they face.

Further reflect on the ramifications of conflict by studying Sadako Sasaki and her cranes for peace before getting pupils to create their own origami with this lesson pack.

Quick links

The UN: United Nations - Citizenship GCSE 9-1

Citizenship GCSE 9-1 resources - created for AQA but easily tranferable for OCR or Edexcel.
Includes - 1 hour PP on the work of the United Nations, worksheets and clips, differentiated fully and easily adaptable. Could be used as an introduction to the topic or a revision session.
Many more inexpensive and free resources at my shop: EC_Resources
Leave me a review and pick any other resource for free :)
By EC Resources

Global Citizenship: Activities for ages 7-11

Classroom activities on Global Citizenship themes for pupils aged 7–11. Activities develop an understanding of how interconnected our world is, the importance of challenging stereotypes, and an awareness of events occurring in the world. The lessons are designed to develop social justice, equity, and sustainability themes within the curriculum.
By Oxfam

Film, Democracy and Debate - Debating Motions

A resource produced in partnership with DebateMate featuring a selection of recommended films for primary and secondary students, and debating motions to structure a debate in your class or film club around a key issue of the film.
To find out more about starting your free Into Film Club visit
Did you find this resource useful? If so, leave a star rating, this helps other teachers to find it.
By IntoFilm

Finding Peace: Introduction to Conflict

This lesson is designed to introduce students to the concept of conflict and to create a working definition for use during the rest of this topic. This lesson also starts to explore ways in which conflicts can be resolved.
By kidogoresources

Human rights education: Refugees

A human rights education resource focusing on refugees and asylum. For use with young people aged 11-16 across a range of subject areas or as part of a cross-curricular or drop-down day- updated August 2017.
By Amnesty International

Sadako's Origami Cranes for Peace


** Update: this new edition of the pack was published in the Teach Secondary Resource Guide 2019 with an outstanding review (see **

Sadako’s Cranes for Peace is a teaching pack that enables primary and secondary students to learn the inspiring story of Sadako Sasaki, a young Japanese girl with terminal leukaemia caused by radiation from the Hiroshima atomic bomb, who became world-famous for folding 1600 origami cranes.

The issues are explored through several cross-curricular lesson activities, including storytelling, creative writing, discussions (including the meaning of peace), and of course origami! The pack comprises various lesson possibilities, with relevance to English (literacy & spoken language), History, RE, Citizenship, Art & Design (origami), Maths (symmetry), SMSC and Prevent.


Sadako’s Cranes for Peace has been given Recommended status and a five-star rating by the TES Resources team.

'A remarkable lesson pack… touching and poignant resources to engage students in thinking about world peace… make(ing) the experience of war feel personal, highly relevant and unforgettable… Beautiful and full of grace, an ideal resource for Philosophy for Children… effortlessly links peace and global education with Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Maths (STEAM)’ - John Dabell, Teach Secondary Resources Guide 2019 (see

Other endorsements include:

‘Today I taught a lesson to 16 year 7 EAL students who speak very little English all about Sadako Sasaki and Hiroshima. The lesson culminated in the entire class making paper cranes and generally loving life’ - Secondary school teacher

‘It was engaging… fun and educational, very enjoyable’ - Year 8 student, Sturminster Newton High School

‘It’s a lot of fun’ - Year 5 student, Seymour Road Primary Academy

By PeaceEducation

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