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Global Schools Program Grade 11



Students will focus on different aspects of gender: stereotypes, the role gender plays in everyday life, and its impact on larger global dynamics.  Students will learn about the concept of positive deviance, and learn how they can promote change by identifying and supporting positive deviance in their own lives. The unit consists of five lessons.

Lesson 1 - Gender and Stereotypes

Lesson 2 - Gender in Everyday Life                 

Lesson 3 - Global Conversations About Gender             

Lesson 4 - Identifying Positive Deviance               

Lesson 5 - Project Presentation and Reflection



General Assessment

What skills does this resource explicitly teach?

The unit helps students develop those skills associated with

  • higher level thinking in a scaffolded manner
  • reflection and writing
  • community - based research
  • analysis of data
  • report presentation


If the topic of gender inequality is to be addressed by society, students must come to an appreciation of the depth and complexity of the issue. This unit contributes to that effort. The use of a guided inquiry pedagogy to help students investigate the topic has the advantage of providing a framework for that investigation, while allowing students a degree of control over their efforts.

Recommendation of how and where to use it

The resource may be used within the context of those units of study that focus on human rights, particularly within the context of citizenship education and sustainable development.

Relevant Curriculum Units

The following tool will allow you to explore the relevant curriculum matches for this resource. To start, select a province listed below.

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  • British Columbia
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    • Grade 11
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      • Social Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Explorations in Social Studies 11: Social justice initiatives can transform individuals and systems
    • Grade 12
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      • Social Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Social Justice: The causes of social injustice are complex and have lasting impacts on society
  • Manitoba
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    • Grade 12
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      • Law
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        • Canadian Law: Student Inquiry -Human Rights Law
      • Social Studies
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        • Area of Inquiry: Gender and Identity
        • Global Issues: Citizenship and Sustainability
  • Newfoundland & Labrador
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      • Law
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        • Canadian Law 2204: Human Rights Law
  • Northwest Territories
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    • Grade 11
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      • Civic Studies
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        • The Development of the Modern World
  • Nova Scotia
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      • Law
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        • Law 12: Other Areas of Law
  • Ontario
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    • Grade 11
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      • Law
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        • Understanding Canadian Law ( (Univ./College Prep.) Rights and Freedoms.
        • Understanding Canadian Law in Everyday Life (Workplace Prep.) Human Rights
      • Social Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Equity, Diversity, and Social Justice (Workplace Pre.) Equity, Social Justice, and Change
        • Equity, Diversity, and Social Justice (Workplace Prep.) Promoting Equity and Social Justice
        • Gender Studies (Univ./College Prep.): Foundations
        • Gender Studies (Univ./College Prep.): Gender Issues and Gender-Related Policy in Context
        • Gender Studies (Univ./College Prep.): Implementing Change
    • Grade 12
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      • Law
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Canadian & International Law (Univ. Prep.) Rights and Freedoms.
      • Social Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Challenge and Change in Society (Univ. Prep.) Global Social Challenges
        • Equity and Social Justice: From Theory to Practice (Univ./College Prep.) Addressing Equity and Social Justice Issues
  • Quebec
  • Saskatchewan
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    • Grade 11
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      • Social Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Social Studies 20: World Issues -Human Rights
  • Yukon Territory
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    • Grade 11
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      • Social Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Explorations in Social Studies 11: Social justice initiatives can transform individuals and systems
    • Grade 12
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Social Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Social Justice: The causes of social injustice are complex and have lasting impacts on society

Themes Addressed

Human Rights (1)

  • Gender Equality

Sustainability Education Principles

Principle Rating Explanation
Consideration of Alternative Perspectives Satisfactory

The unit assumes that gender inequity and gender inequality are a reality. Students undertake their assessment of the issue by responding to a video " We Should all be Feminists" in which the speaker makes the case for gender inequality. Contrary voices are not heard but students are asked to reflect on and discuss the video in small and class settings.

The second lesson poses a number of questions designed to have students investigate the presence of gender in their community, thereby allowing students to come  to their own conclusions about the topic.

Lesson 3 directs students to investigate the issue of gender in a world region of their choosing and again allows students to reach their own findings. Lesson 4 extends this investigation.

The unit concludes with students envisioning a gender free society and challenges students to undertake an action plan that would allow for a more equitable society.

The unit assumes that gender inequality exists but allows the student to determine the manner and degree to which it exists.  

Consideration of Alternative Perspectives:
  • Satisfactory: absence of bias towards any one point of view
  • Good: students consider different points of view regarding issues, problems discussed
  • Very good: based on the consideration of different views, students form opinions and  take an informed position
Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions Good

While not explicitly directed, students may be expected in their investigations to recognize evidence of gender inequality in the economic sphere (pay inequity, job promotion, glass ceilings); in the political sphere (number of women who occupy political office); and in the social sphere (social standing and influence, domestic abuse.)

Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions:

Effectively addresses the environmental, economic and social dimensions of the issue(s) being explored.

  • Satisfactory: resource supports the examination of  these dimensions
  • Good:  resource explicitly examines the interplay of these dimensions
  • Very Good:  a systems-thinking approach is encouraged to examine these three dimensions
Respects Complexity Very Good

Student investigation into the status of women in the local and global contexts will reveal the complexity of this issue, as will their efforts to imagine a gender-blind society and an action plan that would allow for a more equitable society.  

Respects Complexity:

The complexity of the problems/issues being discussed is respected.

Acting on Learning Good

The unit concludes by challenging students to create an action plan that would allow for a more equitable society, and by conducting interviews outside class to test the merits of their action plan.

Acting on Learning:

Learning moves from understanding  issues  to working towards positive change — in personal lifestyle, in school, in the community,  or for the planet

  • Satisfactory: action opportunities are included as extensions 
  • Good: action opportunities are core components of the resource
  • Very Good: action opportunities for students are well supported and intended to result in observable, positive change
Values Education Very Good

The unit may be expected to have students consider issues of fairness, discrimination, and justice within the larger context of human rights but with specific attention to the rights of women.

Values Education:

Students are explicitly provided with opportunities to identify, clarify and express their own beliefs/values.

Empathy & Respect for Humans Very Good

The study of gender is part of the larger study of human rights and social justice. Students should emerge with greater sympathy for those who have been the victim of inequality and with a greater commitment to support the changes necessary to end that inequality.  

Empathy & Respect for Humans: Empathy and respect are fostered for diverse groups of humans (including different genders, ethnic groups, sexual preferences, etc.).
Personal Affinity with Earth Poor/Not considered

The unit focuses on the human condition rather than the natural world.

Personal Affinity with Earth:

Encourages a personal affinity with -the natural world.  

  • Satisfactory: connection is made to the natural world
  • Good: fosters appreciation/concern for the natural world
  • Very Good: fosters stewardship though practical and respectful experiences out-of-doors 
Locally-Focused Learning Very Good

Lesson 2 is organized around a community-based research on gender dynamics and gender roles so that students may better understand how issues of gender manifest themselves in different aspects of everyday life. The collective effort by students is presented in a Community Gender profile.

Locally-Focused Learning:

Includes learning experiences that take advantage of issues/elements within the local community. 

  • Satisfactory: learning is made relevant to the lives of the learners
  • Good: learning is made relevant and has a local focus
  • Very Good: learning is made relevant, local and takes place ‘outside’ , in the community 
Past, Present & Future Good

The unit has students investigate current realities with respect to gender equity both locally and globally and concludes with a final exercise in which students imagine a future that is gender blind.

Past, Present & Future: Promotes an understanding of the past, a sense of the present, and a positive vision for the future.

Pedagogical Approaches

Principle Rating Explanation
Open-Ended Instruction Good

Each of the lessons is driven by a set of open-ended questions that students are challenged to respond to through discussion and research. The conclusions they arrive at will be shaped by their individual and collective efforts.

Open-Ended Instruction :

Lessons are structured so that multiple/complex answers are possible; students are not steered toward one 'right' answer.

Integrated Learning Very Good

The study of gender equality is part of the larger study of human rights, which is a central theme in Social Studies curricula and in particular citizenship education and the responsibilities attached to citizenship locally and globally. The struggle for women's rights is also part of this countries historical narrative and any study of the developing world today must include the role of women in that world if we are to build a more sustainable society.

Gender equality is also an issue of relevance for the Economics teacher who would want to examine the economic costs of our failure to fully take advantage of the talents of half the population and to the Political Science teacher who is examining the role of women in government.

Integrated Learning:

Learning brings together content and skills  from more than one  subject area

  • Satisfactory: content from a number of different  subject areas is readily identifiable
  • Good:  resource is appropriate for use in more than one subject area
  • Very Good:  the lines between subjects are blurred 
Inquiry Learning Good

Each of the lessons in this unit is guided by a set of questions that students are charged with investigating. Student research and the subsequent discussion is intended to make the student responsible for finding the answers to those questions.

Inquiry Learning:

Learning is directed by questions, problems, or challenges that students work to address.   

  • Satisfactory: Students are provided with questions/problems to solve and some direction on how to arrive at solutions.
  • Good: students, assisted by the teacher clarify the question(s) to ask and the process to follow to arrive at solutions.  Sometimes referred to as Guided Inquiry
  • Very Good:  students generate the questions and assume much of the responsibility for how to solve them.  . Sometimes referred to as self-directed learning.


Differentiated Instruction Good

There is a good range of student activities in the unit. These include interviews as part of a community research project, presentations or reports on completion of research, writing and reflecting on their findings, and small and large group discussion. A selection of videos is also included so as to introduce students to the topic and stimulate their interest.

Differentiated Instruction:

Activities address a range of student learning styles, abilities and readiness.

  • Satisfactory:  includes a variety of instructional approaches
  • Good: addresses  the needs of visual, auditory &  kinesthetic learners
  • Very Good: also includes strategies for learners with difficulties
Experiential Learning Very Good

Students conduct interviews in the local community to assess the role of women and report on their findings. A later lesson requires students to select a region of the world to investigate the status of women there and to identify common denominators that describe the challenges that women face both locally and globally.

Experiential Learning:

Authentic learning experiences are provided

  • Satisfactory: learning takes place through ‘hands-on’ experience or simulation
  • Good: learning involves direct experience in a ‘real world context’
  • Very good: learning involves ‘real world experiences’ taking place’ beyond the school walls.
Cooperative Learning Good

There is considerable opportunity for students to share their research findings, to plan cooperatively and to respond to the presentations of their classmates.

Cooperative Learning:

Group and cooperative learning strategies are a priority.

  • Satisfactory:  students work in groups
  • Good: cooperative learning skills are explicitly taught and practiced
  • Very Good: cooperative learning skills are explicitly taught, practiced and assessed
Assessment & Evaluation Good

Assessment opportunities include evaluation of student participation in class and small group discussions, the Community Gender Profile report submitted by students, and the final piece of student work in which they write a blog about the people or projects they discovered in their individual study.

Assessment & Evaluation: Tools are provided that help students and teachers to capture formative and summative information about students' learning and performance. These tools may include reflection questions, checklists, rubrics, etc.
Peer Teaching Good

Different lessons require students to discuss their thoughts in small groups,  share their community gender profiles with classmates, present a report on their findings on the status of women in another country, and create a class blog on the topic of gender equality. 

Peer Teaching:

Provides opportunities for students to actively present their knowledge and skills to peers and/or act as teachers and mentors.

  • Satisfactory: incidental teaching that arises from cooperative learning, presentations, etc.
  • Good or Very Good: an opportunity is intentionally created to empower students to teach other students/community members. The audience is somehow reliant on the students' teaching (students are not simply ‘presenting')
Case Studies Good

Students gain an appreciation of the challenges faced by women by conducting local interviews with an individual women or organization and come to a larger understanding of the global situation by investigating the role of women in a country of their choosing.

Case Studies:

Relevant case studies are included.  Case studies are thorough descriptions of real events from real situations that students use to explore  concepts in an authentic context.

Locus of Control Good

The unit of study establishes a framework within which students are to investigate questions about gender inequality. Students have considerable choice in pursuing their investigations. In investigating the situation at the local level, students select an individual or organization to be interviewed about the role of women in the community. At the global level, they select a country to investigate the status of women in that country. The collective efforts of the students provides both a local and global picture of gender equality or inequality.

Locus of Control: Meaningful opportunities are provided for students to choose elements of program content, the medium in which they wish to work, and/or to go deeper into a chosen issue.