All about Malala Yousafzai for Children

All about Malala for children

Let us pick up our books and our pens. They are our most powerful weapons. One teacher, one book, one pen, can change the world.”

– Malala Yousafzai

Malala Yousafzai has been an inspiration for all! An activist for education, she started to speak out for girls’ rights at the age of 11, when the Taliban banned girls from going to school in the Swat Valley in Pakistan. Malala was shot by the Taliban when she was 15 for speaking out in favour of a girl’s right to an education. She survived this brutal attack and has emerged as a very powerful voice for social justice in the world. Education is the future and that one child, one teacher, one book and one pen can change the world – that’s her strong belief. She has her own fund, the Malala Fund, which was created to help girls get to school. She received the 2014 World’s Children’s Prize for her courageous and dangerous fight for girls’ right to education. In 2014, at the age of 17, she became the youngest-ever Nobel Peace Prize laureate for her struggle for the right of all children (regardless of gender) to an education. Her perseverance, bravery, and activism make Malala an exceptional role model!

Here are some books and videos that you can use to introduce Malala to your children.

Books About Malala

Malala Yousafzai: Warrior with Words by Karen Leggett Abouraya

Malala - Warrior with words

Winner of the California Reading Association’s 2015 EUREKA! Honor Award, This is the inspiring true story of the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize Winner Malala Yousafzai. Author and journalist Karen Leggett Abouraya brings Malala’s story to life for young readers. Malala’s story is more than a biography of a brave and outspoken teenager. It is a testament to the power of education to change the world for boys and girls everywhere.

Watch a read aloud of this book.

For Ages: 4-6

Dear Malala, We Stand with You, by Rosemary McCarney

Dear Malala We stand with you

An inspiring letter to Malala Yousafzai, winner of the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize, that is both a show of support and a call to action for girls around the world. Dear Malala, We Stand with You captures the impact Malala has had on girls from all walks of life. In powerfully simple language and stunning photographs, the struggles from poverty and violence faced by girls everywhere become a catalyst for change. The book includes an excerpt from Malala’s UN speech and provides readers with ways they can help and participate. Malala’s bravery has shown that one person and one voice is enough to change the world. As UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said, the terrorists are most afraid of “the girl with a book.”

For Ages: 4-8

Free as a Bird: The Story of Malala by Lina Maslo

Free as a Bird

The inspiring true story of Malala Yousafzai, human rights activist and the youngest ever winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, from debut author/illustrator Lina Maslo.

For Ages: 4-8

Malala Yousafzai: Education Activist (History Maker Bios (Lerner)) by Grace Hansen (Author)

Malala Yousafzai Education Activist

This beginner biography takes a look into the life of Malala Yousafzai and her advocacy of girls’ education. Complete with full-bleed relevant and historical photographs, timeline, glossary, and index.

For Ages: 4-8

Inspirational Lives: Malala Yousafzai by Claudia Martin

Inspirational Lives Malala

Take a look at the life of Malala Yousafzai, Pakistani activist for female education and the youngest-ever Nobel Prize laureate. Find out about her human rights advocacy for education and for women in her native province of northwest Pakistan, where the local Taliban had at times banned girls from attending school and the international movement it has inspired. Discover how Malala, a schoolgirl from Pakistan, stood up to the Taliban and defended her right to obtaining an education. From her initial blogging for the BBC, to the shooting that rocked the world, to her emergence as a powerful speaker in favour of feminist rights, Malala’s story will amaze and inspire.

For Ages: 5+

Malala: Activist for Girls’ Education by Raphaële Frier (Author), Aurélia Fronty (Illustrator)

Malala Activist for Girls Education

Malala Yousafzai stood up to the Taliban and fought for the right for all girls to receive an education. When she was just 15 old, the Taliban attempted to kill Malala, but even this did not stop her activism. At age eighteen Malala became the youngest person to be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for her work to ensure the education of all children around the world. Malala’s courage and conviction will inspire young readers in this beautifully illustrated biography. This is a Batchelder Award Honor Book.

For Ages: 6-9

Malala a Brave Girl from Pakistan / Iqbal a Brave Boy from Pakistan by Jeanette Winter

Malala a Brave Girl from Pakistan / Iqbal a Brave Boy from Pakistan by Jeanette Winter

A master picture-book artist introduces quite young readers to two astonishing heroes of the world born in Pakistan. In a two-in-one book that readers can begin from either end, Winter links the lives of two courageous child activists from Pakistan—Malala Yousafzai and Iqbal Masih. This inspirational nonfiction tales about 2 children who were unafraid to speak out. He, against inhumane child slavery in the carpet trade. She, for the right of girls to attend school. Both were shot by those who disagreed with them he in 1995, she in 2012. Iqbal was killed instantly, Malala miraculously survived and continues to speak out around the world. The stories of these two courageous children whose bravery transcended their youth are an inspiration to all.

For Ages: 6-10

For the Right to Learn by Rebecca Langston-George

For The Right To Learn

Everyone should know who Malala is and now through this book, children of younger ages can learn and appreciate her tremendous, honorable and valuable work, and her incredible story. This book is a great read for every young kid and is a very vivid and forward retelling of what happened. An excellent way to introduce thought-provoking issues of education, women’s rights, discrimination and the simple ability to learn.

For Ages: 8-12

Who is Malala Yousafzai? by Dinah Brown

Who is Malala

This book is the remarkable story of Malala. It starts at birth on and tells all the details of her getting shot and after. It is an amazing story of courage and one that not many could or would do. Lots of info jammed in this book of over 100 pages! Lots of great sketches too. Great book for all ages not just for kids.

For Ages: 8-12

Books By Malala

I am Malala: How One Girl Stood Up for Education and Changed the World by Malala Yousafzai

I am Malala - Young Readers Edition

The bestselling memoir by Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai. This book is reimagined specifically for a younger audience and includes exclusive photos and material, we hear firsthand the remarkable story of a girl who knew from a young age that she wanted to change the world — and did. Malala’s powerful story will open your eyes to another world and will make you believe in hope, truth, miracles and the possibility that one person — one young person — can inspire change in her community and beyond.

For Ages: 11 +

I am Malala: The Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban by Malala Yousafzai and Christina Lamb

I am Malala

In simple words and stunning prose, this book takes the reader on the extraordinary journey that Malala has taken from a remote village in Northern Pakistan to the posh halls of the United Nations. A symbol of bravery, she has become a global icon for peace and human rights and is the youngest recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize, ever in history. This is a bestselling memoir of the youth icon who fought all odds to stand by the right. It was even accorded as the non-fiction book of the year in 2014 when it was first published. This is essentially the same book as the previous one, but with more historical context and detail surrounding the medical interventions used to save her life when she is shot.

For Ages: 12+

Malala’s Magic Pencil by Malala Yousafzai

Malalas Magic Pencil

As a child in Pakistan, Malala made a wish for a magic pencil that she could use to redraw reality. She would use it to give gifts to her family, to erase the smell from the rubbish dump near her house, to sleep an extra hour in the morning. As she grew older, Malala wished for bigger and bigger things. She saw a world that needed fixing. And even if she never found a magic pencil, Malala realized that she could still work hard every day to make her wishes come true. This beautifully illustrated picture book tells Malala’s story, in her own words, for a younger audience and shows them the worldview that allowed her to hold on to hope and to make her voice heard even in the most difficult of times. The book inspires readers and makes them realise even though there is no “magic pencil” one could “still work hard every day to make her wishes come true.”

Watch a read-aloud of this book.

For Ages: 5-7

Videos About Malala

Women’s History for Kids: Malala Yousafzai the girl shot by the Taliban (Educational Videos)

Celebrating women in history watch our spotlight on Children’s and Women’s Rights Activist Malala Yousafzai. Malala would not let a hateful group called the Taliban to stop her from seeking education for herself and many other girls after going to school was banned in Pakistan. This educational video for students celebrates the life and accomplishments of Malala including winning the Nobel Peace Prize at the age of 17 and more.

He Named Me Malala

HE NAMED ME MALALA is an inspiring documentary by National Geographic. This is an intimate portrait of Nobel Peace Prize winner Malala Yousafzai’s life, story, and personal journey as a leading campaigner for girls’ education around the globe. This video tells the story of Malala Yousafzai, with interviews, live footage, interspersed with an animated story of the Afghani folk hero that is her namesake. It discusses the Taliban and shows how they moved into the Swat Valley. Finally, the film shows the evolution of her, emerging as a global voice for the education rights of children.

Age: 13+

Speeches by Malala

  1. Nobel Peace Prize Acceptance Speech

This video shows Malala’s Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech in 2014. This is one of her most eloquent speeches.

  1. Malala addresses the United Nations Youth Assembly

In this video, Malala Yousafzai addresses the United Nations Youth Assembly. The speech was made only 9 months after she was shot and she had just turned 16! It was her first high-level public appearance and she discussed nonviolence, forgiveness, and the importance of education for all.

Even today many girls face many barriers to receiving an education. Issues such as poverty, religion, social expectations, war and conflict prevent girls from going to school. This Malala Day let us advocate for girl’s right to education and show how providing an education to one girl can empower families and positively impact communities.


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