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Debate: Are Leaders Born or Made?

Before the recent Russian attack, Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky was unpopular. With a background in acting and little political experience, he did not inspire confidence among many citizens. Zelensky’s leadership since the attack, however, has drawn admiration from many, at home and internationally. He has demonstrated courage, empathy, and patriotism, inspiring his own people to fight and winning support from countries throughout the world. Were Zelensky’s leadership skills already present, or did his circumstances shape him into an effective leader? Listen to hear an expert analyze Zelensky’s leadership style and then debate: Are leaders born or made?


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Story Length: 6:32

Listen to the Story:

Listening Comprehension Questions

  • What was one of Malala Yousafzai’s first experiences with the dangers of religious extremism?
  • After miraculously surviving her attack, what has Malala focused her work on?
  • What is the message that Malala is trying to send to those in power?
  • What does Malala want to do in the future?
  • What are the goals of Malala’s mission to support girls?

Discussion Themes

  • What is your opinion on Malala’s message about the power of education?
  • Why do you think that ISIS might want to silence people like Malala?

Socrative users can import these questions using the following code: SOC-1234