Children who have changed the world quiz | Child protester
It's not just adults who can change the world, as we discover in this quiz.

Children Who Have Changed The World Quiz

Greta Thunberg has been in the news a lot of late. Last week she criticised politicians and businessmen for ignoring scientists’ warnings to stop using fossil fuels. But not everybody agrees with her. Donald Trump said, “‘Doom-mongers are the heirs of yesterday’s foolish fortune tellers” and his Treasury secretary said that, “Thunberg should go study economics before offering advice.”

In the face of climate change deniers like these, Greta, an autistic schoolgirl, refuses to give up her fight to save the planet. But she is not the first child to have battled the powers that be in order to change the world.

In this quiz we look at ten children who have changed the world for the better. Some took on the Nazis or other oppressive governments, others campaigned for freedoms we now take for granted. But how many of them do you remember? Have a go at this quiz and let’s see if their names have gone down in history.

1.
Joan of Arc was a child heroine in medieval France, leading them to victory against the invading English. She was eventually captured and executed on what grounds?
She was a traitor
She was a murderer
She wore men’s clothes
She ate meat on a Friday
Joan was given men’s clothing by her captors. At first she refused to wear it but at last relented. She was then burned at the stake as a heretic for doing so! She was 19 years old
2.
Sophie Scholl was a schoolgirl in Nazi Germany during the 1930s and 40s. She founded a non-violent protest group to denounce Hitler’s movement. What was this group called?
The White Rose
The Red Lion
The Grey Wolf
The Black Sheep
Sophie, her brother Hans and their friend Christoph Probst, were executed by guillotine in 1943. She was 21 at the time of her death
3.
Anne Frank was a Dutch Jewish girl who hid from the Nazis but was eventually captured and killed. How old was Anne when she died?
15
18
21
24
Anne was not captured until August 1944. She was then sent to a concentration camp, where she died 6 months later. Her diary has served as a warning to future generations about the dangers of nationalism
4.
Ruby Bridges was only 6 years old when she advanced the cause of African Americans in the USA. What did she do?
She gave a speech alongside Martin Luther King
She refused to give up her seat on a bus to a white man
She wrote a letter to the President of the USA, saying that segregation was unfair
She was the first black child to go to a white-only school in the southern states
Segregation in schools had been outlawed by the US government. Still, many schools in the southern USA refused to admit black children. Ruby went to the William Frantz Elementary School in Louisiana, and had to be escorted by four federal marshals for an entire year, to ensure her safety
5.
In 1982, when she was 10 years old, American schoolgirl Samantha Smith wrote to the leader of the Soviet Union about what?
The fall of the Iron Curtain
Her fear of nuclear war
The dangers of communism
The Soviet invasion of Afghanistan
Anti-nuclear protests were becoming common, which made some Americans take a disliking to Samantha, seeing her as a troublemaker. She died in a plane crash in 1985 when she was just 13. Officially this was an accident, though some believe that Samantha was killed for her anti-nuclear stance
6.
Iqbal Masih was a Pakistani campaigner against child labour. He was made to work 120 hours a week, for which he was paid one rupee. How old was Iqbal when he started work?
He was 4
He was 6
He was 8
He was 10
At the age of 10, Iqbal escaped his slavery. He then went on to help 3,000 Pakistani children free themselves from forced labour. He died in 1995, aged 12. He was shot by, some believe, an assassin employed by the Pakistani carpet industry who relied on child labour
7.
Om Prakash Gurjar also campaigned against child labour, but in which country?
Bangladesh
The USA
India
The UK
Om Prakash Gurjar was taken from his family at the age of 5 and forced to work as a farm labourer. He was rescued and, from then on, campaigned to help others in the same situation. He was awarded an international peace prize for his work battling forced slavery, human trafficking and child marriage
8.
Malala Yousafzai campaigned for the right to education for girls in Pakistan. In 2012, when she was 15, she was shot whilst doing what?
Collecting signatures for a petition
Handing out leaflets
Giving a speech
Riding a bus
As she rode home from school after taking an exam, a masked gunman boarded Malala’s bus and shouted, "Which one of you is Malala? Speak up, otherwise I will shoot you all”. She did speak up and was shot and severely wounded, but thankfully, she recovered
9.
Swedish climate change activist Greta Thunberg published her first book in May 2019, when she was 16. What is the book called?
Can You Hear Me?
No One Is Too Small to Make a Difference
Our House Is on Fire
Our Lives Are in Your Hands
The book is a collection of Greta’s speeches made to the UN, the EU, and the World Economic Forum. The title is apt: Greta started campaigning when she was 15 and the world (at least some of us) has indeed listened to her
10.
Melati and Isabel Wijsen are sisters from Indonesia. They are famous for their campaign against what?
Animal abuse
Plastic pollution
Child labour
Nuclear testing
Indonesia is responsible for 10% of the plastic in our oceans. The sisters began their campaign when they were 10 and 12 years old
Author:  Graeme Haw

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