What Can One Person Do?

6, 7, 8

Young people read or watch the stories of individuals (motivations, background, values) who have received the Nobel Peace Prize and analyze the importance of their actions for the common good.

PrintOne 45-Minute Session

The learner will:

  • analyze how choices made by the recipients of the Nobel Peace Prize improved the common good.
  • lyrics and link to song (see Bibliography) "What Can One Little Person Do?" (handout)
  • copies of Research Outline (handout)


  1. Anticipatory Set:

    Play the song, “What Can One Little Person Do?” by Sally Rogers. Display the lyrics (see handout). Discuss how one person can have an impact on the world today and in the future.

  2. As an example of one person's legacy related to peace, play an excerpt from a Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech (Malala Yousafzai linked in the Bibliography below). Discuss the message and a brief explanation of the peace prize. 

  3. Individually or in groups, youth may research one person who has won the Nobel Peace prize. The Website https://www.nobelprize.org/ may be used as a reference site. The handout Research Outline can guide their exploration. 

  4. After learning about one prize winner, youth share with the whole group what their person did and why is it important to the common good.

    After listening to all presentations, discuss: Did the winners of the Nobel Peace Prizes have any characteristics in common? What can we learn from them about promoting peace in the world?

Philanthropy Framework

  1. Strand PHIL.I Definitions of Philanthropy
    1. Standard DP 01. Define Philanthropy
      1. Benchmark MS.4 Give examples of how individuals have helped others.
  2. Strand PHIL.II Philanthropy and Civil Society
    1. Standard PCS 01. Self, citizenship, and society
      1. Benchmark MS.4 Describe the characteristics of someone who helps others.
  3. Strand PHIL.III Philanthropy and the Individual
    1. Standard PI 01. Reasons for Individual Philanthropy
      1. Benchmark MS.4 Identify and describe the actions of how citizens act for the common good.