Immigrant/Refugee Awareness Instructional Materials

  1. A Refugee Camp in the Heart of the City (Website). Doctors Without Borders/Medecins Sans Frontieres page s . 2007. English .

    This exhibit travels around the U.S. and Canada to encourage visitors to imagine that they are among the millions of people fleeing violence and persecution in, for example, Somalia, Colombia, the Democratic Republic of Congo, or Sudan. The exhibit is made up of materials used by MSF in its emergency medical work around the world, including emergency refugee housing, a food distribution tent, water pump, health clinic, vaccination tent, therapeutic feeding center, and a cholera treatment center. For those who cannot attend the exhibit, the Web site includes photos, videos, and interactive guides that can be used as educational materials for students of all ages.

  2. Against All Odds. United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) page s . 2004. English German Greek Norwegian Swedish .

    "Against All Odds is an interactive online game created to increase students' awareness and knowledge about refugee situations by putting players in the position of a refugee. Divided into three categories "War and Conflict", "Borderland", and "A New Life" - Against All Odds takes players on a journey ultimately towards asylum, but also touches on issues of understanding and intuition in different environments. Players will be challenged by a variety of obstacles and scenarios simulating struggles refugees are forced to deal with every day, from sneaking out of town to dealing with prejudices in a new place." UNHCR Description

  3. Appreciating America's Heritage: Immigration Resource Guide for K-12 Educators. American Immigration Law Foundation 12 page s . 2007. English .

    This instructional guide for teachers provides lesson plans to introduce students, especially those who may not be exposed directly to ethnically diverse populations, to the topic of immigration.

  4. Bury Me, My Love. ARTE France , The Pixel Hunt , Figs page s . October 2017. English French German .

    Bury Me, My Love is a  reality-inspired interactive fiction designed for mobile phones, telling Nour's story as she flees Syria and tries to reach Europe. Unlike other interactive fictions, your choices have an impact on the story allowing users to better understand the complex situations migrants face and the weight their choices often have.

  5. Children of War - A Video for Educators. National Child Traumatic Stress Network Refugee Trauma Task Force Children of War Production Committee page s . 2005. English .

    In this video, refugee youth tell their own stories about the experience of war. It is recommended for educators and others who work with immigrant and refugee youth and children. Because the stories are deeply moving, the video is not recommended for students younger than high school age, and any presentation to youth should be handled with sensitivity and made only after the video has been previewed. The resource guide will help educators teaching students of all ages understand the experience of refugee youth and children. It is best used in a group setting. The guide includes discussion questions for educators, suggests ways teachers and schools can help refugee students, and describes the traumatic stress than can result from wartime experiences and resettlement in a new culture.

  6. Children's Literature about Refugees. Hope, Julia 160 page s . June 30, 2017. English .

    This book explores the ways teachers can use children's books about refugees in their classes. It also offers concrete case studies and shows teachers how they can tackle this challenging topic.

  7. Choosing My Way. Cultural Orientation Resource Center (COR) page s . 2015. English .

    This video game allows refugees the opportunity to learn more about life after resettlement in the United States. In the game, players consider how to respond to opportunities and challenges that arise, while dealing with limited resources. The game is targeted for refugees overseas or in the United States who would like to interact with orientation material independently or who may not actively engage in formal orientation. The game is also designed for use by orientation providers facilitating its use in small groups, encouraging discussion and reflection. Currently suited for refugees with some English proficiency, the game may later be translated into other languages. 

  8. Creating a Refuge From Bullying. ECDC/African Community Center of Denver's Youth Outreach Anti-Bullying Project page s . 2006. English This resource may be free from your local library or purchased from the publisher.

    This video explores the refugee condition as a product of bullying on a global scale. Refugee children have experienced persecution in all its forms-causing them to lose their heritage, culture, and sense of security. When they enter the American school system, they are often bullied or excluded based on their lack of English or cultural differences. Creating a Refuge from Bullying features Amjaad and Il Gude, an Iraqi boy and Somali Bantu girl, who describe their experiences with American peers as they try to assimilate into the American school system and culture. The film also
    helps identify and address bullying on a more general level as a problem that every student can help solve, whether they are victims, bystanders, or bullies themselves.

  9. Creating Refugee Awareness. Catholic Charities of Jacksonville, Florida 41 page s . Octover 2012. English .

    This set of lesson plans for grades K-12 from Parish Organized to Welcome Refugees (POWR) of Catholic Charities Jacksonville aims to promote student awareness of the violence and human rights abuse occurring throughout the world and to understand the Holy Family's life and the reality of refugees. The goal is that students will learn to appreciate their own blessings, nourish their family lives and share their gifts with those in need.

  10. Discovery Education (Website). Discovery Education . 2010. English .

    This Web site has a Lesson Plan Library, which includes a lesson on Immigration to the United States

  11. Encouraging Refugee Awareness in the Classroom: A Guide for Teachers. Issue Paper. DeCarlo, Jacqueline , Hamilton, Virginia 43 page s . February 1994. English .

    "This lesson packet focuses on the growing situation of refugees and cultural awareness. In the document are definitions of terms, suggestions for infusing lessons on the refugees into the curriculum, and resource information. One of the purposes of working to create refugee awareness is to help ordinary students become extraordinary citizens of American society and the world community. The document is divided into the following sections: (1) "Introduction"; (2) "Overviews of Current Refugee Emergencies"; (3) "Proven Lesson Planning Ideas" (e.g., Analyzing Refugee Experience, Applying the Durable Solutions, Exhibiting a Willingness to Respond); (4) "Teacher Resources"; and (5) "Conclusion." (EH)" (ERIC Document EDED380392)

  12. Faces and Voices of Refugee Youth A Curriculum Guide for Secondary School Teachers and Counselors. Kelen, Joyce 57 page s . n.d.. English .

    Guides middle school and high school teachers through curricula highlighting the experiences and issues surrounding refugees and immigrants using an award-winning documentary photography and oral history exhibition called Faces and Voices of Refugee Youth. This exhibit, originally displayed as part of the 2002 Cultural Olympiad in conjunction with the Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City, recounts the struggles of over 1,800 youth refugee who resettled in Utah. The exhibit will reopen in 2009 at the Leonardo Museum's Center for Documentary Arts (CDA) in Salt Lake City. The curriculum guide's four sections offer: (1) an integrated guide for middle school teachers; (2) a culture, citizenship, and conflict resolution guide; (3) an analysis for ninth grade geography/social studies classes; and (4) activities for high school English classes. Exercises enhance awareness and empathy for refugees and require students to develop a definition of a refugee, to determine the organizations and personal responsibility for assisting refugees, to compare and contrast the experiences and emotions of a young newcomer, to locate native countries on a map using the grid system, to analyze conflicts, and to articulate the concepts of human rights, citizenship, asylum, racism, and culture. The curriculum guide can be used in support of a visit to the exhibition or on its own, without ever personally viewing the exhibit. (IP)

  13. Faces and Voices of Refugee Youth: A Curriculum Guide for Teachers and Counselors Grades K-6. Kelen, Joyce 24 page s . n.d.. English This resource may be free from your local library or purchased from the publisher.

    Guides elementary school teachers through curricula highlighting the issues surrounding refugees and immigrants using an award-winning documentary photography and oral history exhibition called Faces and Voices of Refugee Youth. This exhibit, originally displayed as part of the 2002 Cultural Olympiad in conjunction with the Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City, recounts the struggles of over 1,800 youth refugee who resettled in Utah. The exhibit will reopen in 2009 at the Leonardo Museum's Center for Documentary Arts (CDA) in Salt Lake City. The curriculum contains three units of learning- People, Place, and Time- designed to explore the concept of human rights and to raise awareness and empathy toward the resettlement of refugees in the local community. The People unit offers exercises examining the definition of culture, refugee, acculturation, citizenship, human rights, conflict, and peacemaking. The Place unit uses maps to identify the native countries of the young refugees, to discuss the topic of migration, and to identify the reasons people are forced to flee their homes. The Time Unit discusses the idea of history, the impact of time and events on individuals and families, and predicts future changes in the lives of the young refugees. Appropriate activities for each learning unit encompass each grade level from kindergarten to sixth grade. The curriculum guide can be used in support of a visit to the exhibition or on its own, without ever personally viewing the exhibit. (IP)

  14. Human Rights, Refugees, and UNHCR. United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) page s . 1998. English French German Spanish .

    "This teachers' kit is designed to help teachers prepare lessons which demonstrate the relationship between refugee protection and human rights. The kit includes posters and articles to prompt class discussion as well as teaching plans for children. Target Group: ages 9-18." - Publisher's description

  15. Immigration: The Changing Face of America. Library of Congress, American Memory, The Learning Page . 2003. English .

    This Web site introduces teachers and students to the topic of Immigration. This site features lesson plans, recipes and vocabulary activities which serve to show how immigrant groups have contributed to the culture of this nation, a timeline and interactive map of the United States showing pertinent dates, and the port(s) of entry and migration patterns of immigrant groups, and student interviews with immigrants who arrived in the U.S. from the mid-20th century to the early 21st century.


  16. Learning Resource to Accompany the Refugee Camp in the Heart of the City Exhibit. Medicins Sans Frontieres/Doctors Without Borders 21 page s . 2008 Summer. English .

    This learning resource material is designed to provide teachers and students with an opportunity to further expand upon their experience of participating in the Refugee Camp in the Heart of the City exhibit. They also offer an introduction to refugee and displacement issues for those students unable to attend the exhibit.

  17. Lost Boys of Sudan. Mylan, Megan , Shenk, Jon 87 page s . 2003. English This resource may be free from your local library or purchased from the publisher.

    Records the lives of two young men, Santino and Peter, members of the "Lost Boys of Sudan," as they spend their first life-altering year as refugees in America. Santino and Peter, members of the Dinka tribe, joined with 20,000 other young boys orphaned during the Sudanese civil war and walked across the desert, ultimately settling in the Kakuma Refugee Camp in Kenya. They were granted asylum in America and were sent to Kansas and Texas. Using the boys' own words and voices, they narrate their struggle to acclimate to modern conveniences, high school, employment, and paying the bills. Peter learns about financial accountability when his rent payment is lost, and Santino is pressured by his sister back in Africa to send money. They seek social acceptance on sports teams and in religious youth groups, yet they still feel isolated and ache for the friends and comfort they had in the relationships with the "Lost Boys." They graduate from high school and seek higher education while always trying tohelp those left behind. (IP)

  18. Our World Our Rights. Amnesty International USA 174 page s . 2000. English .

    This book is designed to introduce elementary school children to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR). It includes classroom activities, stories, case studies, action opportunities and a list of additional resources. 

    Recommended for ages 5-10.

  19. Passages: An Awareness Game Confronting the Plight of Refugees. United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) 75 page s . 1995. English .

    "This UNHCR's educational tool is a simulation game designed to create a better understanding of the problems of refugees. By playing the game "Passages", participants will discover the concrete problems which confront refugees; feel the psychological anguish caused by separation and flight; see what forces people into refugee situations and the train of events that brings them to refugee camps and beyond; think about possible solutions to refugee problems, particularly with regards to integration within the country of asylum and repatriation to the country of origin; adopt a more welcoming attitude towards refugees in their own countries; become motivated to undertake actions on behalf of refugees. Passages can be played in various situations: with young people of different ages and ethnic backgrounds; with groups of different sizes; with schools groups, youth organizations, community groups, etc.; both indoors and outdoors." - Publisher's description

  20. Podcasting the Immigrant Experience. Teach Immigration page s . July 25, 2016. English .

    This resource from Share My Lesson teaches students how to create a podcast to tell an immigrant's story. The goal of the lesson plan is to have students more fully understand the immigrant experience.

  21. REACH: Refugee Education for Awareness, Change, and Hope. ECDC/African Community Center . 2001. English This resource may be free from your local library or purchased from the publisher.

    Presents a social sciences curriculum for elementary, middle, and high school classes to inform students about refugee experiences, the international agencies providing refugee support, and how they can make a personal impact on the issue. Programs in history, civics, and geography are provided at each instruction level. The elementary program includes: international refugee topics, child soldiers, world cultures, and child rights. The middle school program includes: refugee and United States foreign policy, famous refugees, the Rwandan conflict, and refugee camp experiences. The high school program examines: the role of the United Nations, the refugee process, perceptions of Middle Eastern cultures, designs for an effective refugee camp, and requirements of an emergency response team. Each curriculum level attempts to connect the physical location with the human responses and culture of the people living there. Power point presentations, maps and tables, and group projects enhance the overall goals of the curriculum. (IP)

  22. Resources and Lessons for Educators. Re-imagining Migration page s . 2017. English .

    Re-imagining Migration provides interdisciplinary resources and lessons to teach about migration, immigration, refugees, and civic empowerment through history, literature, and the sciences.

  23. SHARED Futures, DVD and resource pack. Salusbury WORLD page s . 2008. English .

    This resource promotes the integration of refugee children and young people in school and the wider community. It can support practitioners working with children and young people in schools, youth groups, community groups, etc. The DVD contains nine short films with training workshop activities. (Description from source.)

  24. Teaching Children About Refugees. Marke, Jessica page s . March 2, 2017. English .

    This article from the Refugee Center Online (RCO) shares some tools that can be used to help teach children about refugees, whether at home or in a school setting. Additionally, it offers a few tips and recommendations to make the lesson go smoothly.

  25. Teaching with Folk Stories of the Hmong: an Activity Book. Cha, Dia , Livo, Norma J. 109 page s . 2000. English This resource may be free from your local library or purchased from the publisher.

    This book is designed as a guide for teaching students about Hmong culture while building appreciation of worldwide cultural diversity. After providing an overview of the distinct history and customs of the Hmong, co-author Dia Cha shares her experiences growing up in Laotian villages, escaping from communist soldiers, living in refugee camps in Thailand, and coming to the United States.

    Recommended for ages 4 and up.

  26. The Uprooted: Refugees and the United States: A Multidisciplinary Teaching Guide. Donahue, David M. , Flowers, Nancy 224 page s . May 10, 2002. English This resource may be free from your local library or purchased from the publisher.

    The Uprooted helps students middle school age and older to understand the plight of refugees through activities that provide information, build empathy, and stimulate social action. (Description from source)

  27. Thinking about the refugee experience: Classroom activities for Refugee Week. Languages and Multicultural Education Resource Centre (LMERC) 6 page s . August 2002. English .

    AUSTCARE Refugee Week aims to develop awareness of refugee issues and of the contribution refugees make to our society, and to offer all Australians the chance to make a difference. The activities described in this resource have been collated to assist teachers in providing activities for all students during or in the lead up to Refugee Week. - Publisher's description

  28. To Be a Refugee. United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) . 2008. English .

    Children's video. To be used at schools and in general with young audiences. A teaching guide for the video is available upon request.

    Recommended for ages 10 and up.