Jump to Content or Main Navigation

Paul D. Coverdell World Wise Schools

Paul D. Coverdell World Wise Schools

You Can Dream; Stories of Moroccan Women Who Do

Africa, Morocco
Grades 9-12
Cross-Cultural Understanding, Gender, Let Girls Learn, Social Studies & Geography

This lesson is designed to support exploration of the issue of gender equality and traditional gender roles. By viewing the introductory slideshow and using class discussion questions which accompany the 25 minute video “ You Can Dream; Stories of Moroccan Women Who Do ,” students travel to the fascinating country of Morocco and learn first-hand how several Moroccan women are transforming not only their own lives, but their entire community by becoming role models and ensuring equal opportunities are available for all. By engaging students in the discussion questions, students are given the opportunity to share their own thoughts on this global issue and offer personal insight into how the experiences highlighted in the film can be used to overcome gender inequality worldwide.


More about the work of Peace Corps Volunteers with Gender Equality

More about Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment



Introduce the issue:

1. Have students view the slideshow - You Can Dream; Stories of Moroccan Women Who Do .This slideshow will introduce them to Cortney Healy- a Peace Corps Volunteer in the country of Morocco who describes her experiences and why she made a film about the empowerment of women.

2. Create a class discussion around how we in our own culture view the role differences between male and female. To do this, create two columns on the board, one titled "female" and the other "male". Ask students to describe these two roles with phrases or short sentences. Do these words always describe one or the other? Why do we associate some of these words with a specific gender?

3. Have students work in groups and answer the following questions.

  • What is meant when we say "traditional" gender roles?
  • Why do cultures (including ours) still have "traditional" gender roles?
  • What are some examples of "traditional" gender roles?
  • What "traditional" roles were highlighted in the slideshow?

After the students have been given enough time to answer the questions, provide an opportunity for each group to share their answers with the class.


View the film:

4. The film - You Can Dream; Stories of Moroccan Women Who Do consists of 6 interviews with women in Morocco who overcame traditional gender roles and successfully changed their lives and in doing so, became positive examples for others. Provide each student with a copy of the discussion questions. Because this film contains subtitles the students will need to read, it is important that you pause the viewing after each interview to allow time for students to discuss the questions provided.

5. Once you have finished viewing the film, allow time for your students to share their answers to the discussion questions. Conclude the class discussion with the following questions.

  • What key characteristics or skills do these women share?
  • What does it mean to be a community leader and role model?
  • The United States has had many struggles for equality throughout its history. Who were some American women who also broke traditional gender roles and helped ensure equality for future generations of women? 

Frameworks & Standards


Enduring Understandings
  • Gender equality issues vary across cultural contexts.
  • Gender equality and women’s empowerment influence numerous global issues.
  • Globally, there is a persistent gender gap in the areas of economic participation, education, health, and political empowerment.
Essential Questions
  • Why is it important to promote gender equality and women’s empowerment?
  • Why is gender equality a global issue?

National Curriculum Standards for Social Studies


Thematic Strand I: Culture

  • Ask and find answers to questions related to culture
  • Explain how patterns of behavior reflect cultural values and beliefs

Thematic Strand IV: Individual Development and Identity

  • Examine the relationship between individual identity and social, cultural, and historic contexts
  • Describe ways in which family, gender, ethnicity, nationality, and institutional affiliations contribute to individual development, and personal identify.
  • Describe similarities and differences in individual development across cultures.

Thematic Strand IX: Global Connections

  • Explore the causes, consequences, and possible solutions related to persistent, current, and emerging global issues
  • Identify concerns, issues, conflicts, and possible resolutions related to issues involving universal human rights 
Browse More Lesson Plans