Lesson 3
Get Started - Finding An Issue of Interest

Finding Inspiration &
Motivation in the Story of
One Film & its Filmmaker


After this lesson, students will be able to:

  • Envision themselves as filmmakers who act as a megaphone to tell a story that they feel must be shared.


In preparation for taking informed, creative action, students will study one documentary film and the story of its development.

Guiding Questions:

  • What human rights issues am I compelled to learn more about?
  • Why do I feel compelled to learn about specific issues?
  • What compels me to take action and how can I be a megaphone to tell the story?

Recommended Time:

90 minutes

Common Core State Standards:






“Birth of After the Fall: HIV Grows Up” – Kathy Treat’s story

Film: After the Fall: HIV Grows Up

After the Fall Curriculum Guide


Technology Required:

1. Computer with internet access and projection capability or television with DVD player


Lesson Design:

  • Explain to students how film is one medium that has an incredible power to touch us, transport us, and motivate us.
  • Read producer Kathy Treat’s story, “The Birth of After the Fall: HIV Grows Up.” Discuss the following quote, “I left that trip with one image— a megaphone. I wanted to be a megaphone so that a larger audience, perhaps even the world, could hear this story—the one that they, themselves, were telling. This is where the idea of the documentary first came to be.”
  • Select certain focus questions from the After the Fall Viewing Guide for students to consider during and after viewing.
  • Show the film trailer or the first few minutes of the film. Using selected focus questions from the After the Fall Viewing Guide, model writing a response including collected information, thoughts, feelings, and questions in response to the question.
  • Show the entire film as students take notes on their thoughts/ observations about the story.
  • Discuss the impact that both Kathy Treat’s story and the film has on them as viewers.
  • Students reflect on how Kathy’s story, the film and the people presented in it may inspire them to be a megaphone.