Addressing the Issues

  • How can we make the world a better place?
  • Do all people tackle causes in their lifetimes? Why or why not? What causes might your generation undertake?
  • What do people do when faced with a decision between advancing a cause and doing what they believe is right?
  • Are there situations in which individuals might challenge authority? What are some responsible ways of challenging authority?

Ambition, Power, and the Common Good

  • What is the nature of ambition and power?
  • What gives a person status? Is status achieved the same way in all societies? Within a society? Why is status important?
  • How do ambition and power drive us? How do they challenge us? How do individuals acquire real and perceived power? How do people enact power? How are power and privileged aligned? How does lack of power or imbalance in power affect individuals, groups, and societies?
  •  What is meant by “the common good”? Who decides what the common good is? Is the common good best for every individual in a society? How do we attend to the common good while respecting individual goals and values?

Dealing with Universal Issues

  • What is “truth” and what is “justice”?
  • How do we define “truth”? What are important truths in life? How do we find truth?
  • How do we tell right from wrong? What challenges result from varying views of “right” and “wrong”? What are the rights of all?
  • How do we define “justice”? Why is justice often hard to achieve? Is justice fair? Infallible? Why does justice sometimes “sting”? How do we remedy injustice? Are there situations in which it is more just to treat people differently than to treat them the same?

Doubt and Fear

  • What doubts and fears do we have?
  • What special challenges do doubts and fears bring to an individual? What are ways of overcoming doubts and fears? How can having doubts and fears be an advantage?
  • How do people react to tragedy or loss in their lives? What strategies do people use to deal with tragedy and loss? How do people respond to or deal with despair? What are peoples sources of strength? How can strength and healing arise out of tragedy and loss?
  • Is it natural to feel anger and hatred sometimes? Why? How do we navigate and deal with those emotions?


  • Are there universal ideals for which we all strive?
  • How ought human beings to behave? Is desirable behaviour the same in all cultures? In all communities?
  • What is admirable? What is not so admirable? Does everyone agree?
  • Why do our actions sometimes fall short of our ideals?

Joy and Inspiration

  • What brings us joy and inspiration in life?
  • What do optimistic and pessimistic mean? How do they apply to one’s view of life?
  • What is “the good life”? Is it the same for everyone?
  • What is a happy life? What is the meaning and nature of happiness? Does happiness mean different things to different people? How might we achieve happiness in life? How might we find personal fulfilment?

Sense of Self

  • Who and what are we?
  • What does it mean to be a human being? What is human nature?
  • Do we see ourselves the same way that others see us? How does being the member of a particular group affect our identity and sense of self?
  • What is our purpose for being?

Social Criticism

  • What is social criticism?
  • What is the purpose of social criticism?
  • What is conformity? What is resistance? What is meant by “the status quo”? What is rebellion? Do different people define these differently? How are conformity, resistance, and rebellion manifested differently in different societies?
  • Why do some individuals or groups challenge the system while others abide by it? What is political protest? How do societies treat resistance? Is resistance risky? Why or why not?
**Everything taken from the Saskatchewan ELA curriculum 

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