Dr Julia Hope: Children’s Literature about Refugees

Visiting from Goldsmiths’ University, last week Dr Julia Hope shared with the faculty her wealth of experience from her PhD research and a decade as a ‘refugee teacher’, working with children from a refugee background in the classroom.

Her paper explored the range of ways in which children’s books can support children with a refugee background to recognise themselves in fiction, as well as the opportunity for children without these experiences to develop empathy and understanding. Her examples demonstrated that even very young children can through discussion and art demonstrate a sophisticated understanding of the reasons people leave, and what it might be like to come to a new classroom, a new school, a new country.

 

Feedback from the session was excellent. One delegate stated, ‘Excellent session –   thoroughly enjoyed it. Thankyou!’ Another, who is a trainee teacher commented, ‘We need more talks like this.’ Students and staff plan to read more of the titles Julia included in her presentation, approaching them critically, and seeking to undertake research in the area. Others reflected on the way the session would help in the classroom to work with refugee families and children.

 

Language Support for Adult Refugees – A Council of Europe Toolkit

From the council of Europe website:

The Council of Europe has developed the toolkit presented on this website (available in seven languages) to support member states in their efforts to respond to the challenges posed by unprecedented migration flows. It has been produced as part of the project Linguistic Integration of Adult Migrants (LIAM) of the Council of Europe’s major Programme on language policy.

The toolkit comprises the 57 tools and other resources contained in the various sections of this website. Tools can be downloaded and adapted to meet the needs of different contexts

The toolkit is designed to assist organisations, and especially volunteers, providing language support for adult refugees. Throughout the toolkit “refugee” is understood in a broad sense and includes asylum seekers as well as refugees.

Further details are available here https://www.coe.int/en/web/language-support-for-adult-refugees

Event: Dr Julia Hope – Children’s Literature About Refugees 14th May

‘Children’s Literature About Refugees: A Catalyst in the Classroom’

DR JULIA HOPE, GOLDSMITHS COLLEGE, UNIVERSITY OF LONDON

Monday 14th May 2018 at 1.00pm, Room E1

This seminar welcomes Julia Hope, author of, ‘Children’s Literature About Refugees: A Catalyst in the Classroom’.  This book addresses one of our most pressing global issues – often called “the migrant crisis” – in a form accessible to younger children.

For child refugees to feel that their experiences are validated, and for others to understand their situation, engaging with the growing field of children’s texts on the subject is crucial.  Teachers also need to be encouraged to find ways in to tackle such challenging topics, with fiction providing the perfect catalyst.

In exploring the use of Mary Hoffman’s The Colour of Home and Beverley Naidoo’s The Other Side of Truth in the classroom, this book is indispensable for educators in the younger age range, and for researchers who are interested in controversial children’s literature.

Organised by the Faculty of Education and sponsored by I4P, this event will take place in the Faculty of Education, room E1.

More Information and Registration

Free course: Working Supportingly with Refugees

A new online course, Working Supportingly with Refugees: Principles, Skills and Perspectives, commences on Monday 21 May.  The course will run for three weeks and is free to access. Attendance is flexible and self-paced, participants can enrol any time before or after starting date to complete the course.

You can access it here – https://www.futurelearn.com/courses/cultural-mediation/1

What topics will you cover?

  • The basics about human migration, refugees and legal framework
  • Cultural diversity and interethnic relations
  • Socialisation, conflict resolution and social inclusion
  • Principles on psychological well-being and socio-emotional health in refugee cases. Strategies for the mediator to support the target group and their own self-care
  • Communication and interpreting in contexts of cultural mediation
  • The practice of cultural mediation in the reality of refugees

The course has been developed by the GRAMNet academics and practitioners  at the University of Glasgow with the support of EU Erasmus + funding for the ReCULM project led by an international team of partners from Greece – National Centre for Social Research, Italy –University of Modena and Reggio Emilia, Spain – University of Almeria  and the UK – University of Glasgow.

Syrian Mothers’ Day Event in Liverpool 25 March 2018

Written by Mayya Al Safadi Diab.

With the help of Refugee Action, an event was organised by members of the Syrian refugee community for Syrian ladies and children in Liverpool on the 25th of March 2018. Thanks to the active ladies and in co-ordination with Refugee Action, the event was a great success, it involved traditional Syrian food that was cooked by the participant ladies themselves.

It was so lovely to see the pride each lady has represented her dish with, as in Syrian culture expressing love and dedication get represented by the Syrian food that takes a long time to be made most of the times.
Some ladies shared with hand made products and presented one of their creations to the winner of one of the competitions, which was great joy to the ladies, there were some games and presents as well to give to the winners with one of the Syrian ladies doing Henna for the young children and the women which was received with great joy.
Everything was free as thanks to refugee action support the hire of the hall was covered by them which made it more enjoyable to all ladies.
Some ladies travelled from Huyton to attend the event and they felt that it made them feel much better as lots of them were worried about families and relatives in Syria but being surrounded by their friends made the nostalgia a bit easier to manage. The kids were running and laughing, as the language barrier still a big part of these womens lives it made them relax and enjoy the event by being able to express themselves in their mother tongue with people around them. The event was a success by all measures.

Young asylum seekers ‘face blanket study ban’ The Guardian 8 April 2018

This article by  highlights an important issue affecting the education of young asylum seekers. Colleagues in the FE sector have expressed great concern for the well-being and prospects for success of asylum seekers who access their adult provision.

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2018/apr/08/young-asylum-seekers-education-ban 

Prof John Diamond supports Action for Refugees

Mike Stoddart writes….

Mike Stoddart

Action for Refugees was formed as a grouping of academics, support staff and students at Edge Hill University who felt a common need to respond to the plight of refugees and asylum seekers in the UK and abroad.

The initial spark was created by a presentation given by members of staff in the Faculty of Education on their work as volunteers in the Calais Jungle. This prompted a multi-faceted response that included fund-raising, volunteering, curriculum developments and knowledge sharing and transfer events. Perhaps most importantly, the group engaged on a number of levels with refugees, asylum seekers and organisations working to support them.

We aim to promote a multi-faceted, positive, response to the refugee crisis that results in a greater understanding of and practical support for those involved.

Our intended outcomes are to:

  1. Share relevant research.
  2. Increase knowledge and understanding of the refugee crisis.
  3. Provide practical support to refugees, asylum seekers and those agencies working with them.
  4. Ensure that all teacher-training graduates from the Faculty of Education are better able to meet the learning requirements of refugees.
  5. To learn from the experiences, skills and knowledge of refugees and asylum seekers.

We are very keen to ensure that the development of the group is led by the priorities of those directly involved. It is important to us that the group is open to refugees and asylum seekers as well as representatives from the wide range of organisations working to support them.

Prof John Diamond writes…

Prof John Diamond

The work colleagues  – staff and students  – are undertaking across both the Faculty of Education and the wider University to support refugee and asylum seekers and the various NGO support groups that exist here in the North West of England are a very real and practical example of how skills, knowledge and ideas can be shared and the effect of which can be transformative.

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