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The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind Movie Lesson Plan


  • This resource is a downloadable PDF
  • Ideal for Grades 6-12
  • Perfect for Language Arts, Social Studies, Life Skills, Character Education, or Leadership classes
  • Aligned to Common Core State Standards
  • Activities designed to help students meet Social & Emotional Learning Competencies

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind Movie Lesson Plan helps teachers show students that each of them has something inside themselves that can help their family and community.

Using The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind Movie Lesson Plan, students will learn about William Kamkwamba, who was a 13-year-old boy living on a poor farm in Malawi in 2001. He had hopes and dreams of attending a good school that would help him create a better life for himself. But when his family could no longer pay the school fees, William was forced to learn on his own.

His passion for science and technology spurred him to look for a way to help his family and community through the drought they were suffering from. Ultimately, William gained the knowledge and skills to build a wind turbine that would help pump water to their fields even when it didn’t rain. However, his father didn’t believe he knew what he was talking about and told William to give up his silly dreams.

Would you be willing to break the status quo and stand up to authority to help share your gift with the world?

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind Movie Lesson Plan teaches us that learning does not always take place in a traditional setting, that young people can engineer creative solutions when motivated, and that it often takes a lot of courage and persistence to do what we believe is right when it goes against the status quo of our culture and family environments.

Listen to William Kamkwamba’s TED talk by clicking HERE.

This amazing true story can inspire students to make a difference in the world by sharing their gifts with others!

In order to complete these activities, students will need to watch the movie The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind (watch official trailer), which has a rating of PG and a run time of 1 hour and 53 minutes.


Each of our Leadership at the Movies lesson plans includes the following activities:

✅ Reflection: allows students to journal about one of the movie’s themes prior to watching.

✅ Analysis: questions and prompts to analyze the characters, plot, and climax of the movie.

✅ Practice & Discussion: a partner/group activity that takes the principles of the movie and asks students to take action and grow in their own lives.

✅ Extension: a RAFT (Role-Audience-Format-Topic) writing prompt to help students apply their new knowledge.

✅ Lead for Impact: challenges students to pinpoint how the hero of the story exhibited The 12 Fundamentals of Impact and then synthesize how they can apply the lessons to writing their own story.


WARNING: This is a DEEP LEARNING lesson plan to help students employ a LEADERSHIP approach to SOCIAL & EMOTIONAL LEARNING.

These activities are designed to help students meet the following Social & Emotional Learning Competencies as outlined by the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) and the Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning (CASEL):

⭐ Develop SELF-AWARENESS and SELF-MANAGEMENT skills to achieve school and life success.

⭐ Use SOCIAL-AWARENESS and interpersonal skills to establish and maintain POSITIVE RELATIONSHIPS.

⭐ Demonstrate DECISION-MAKING skills and responsible behaviors in personal, school, and community contexts.


The activities in The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind Movie Lesson Plan will challenge students to move closer to mastery in the following skills: leadership, cooperation with others, creativity, critical thinking, emotional intelligence, problem solving, and judgment and decision making.


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Leadership at the Movies Bundle

With school-wide access to lesson plans and teaching resources for over 75 movies, you can help your students strive to reach their full potential!