Re-imagining Migration’s Approach to Teaching

Re-imagining Migration’s approach to teaching is grounded in our framework and begins with the recognition that good teaching is always developed in relationship to the students that you teach, the community that you teach in, the culture of your school and classroom, as well as the academic discipline and course in which lessons are delivered and designed.

Our approach builds on a belief that good teaching, and good curriculum, is always in a dialogue between the students in our care, our learning goals, and the dispositions we seek to nurture, the content we are teaching, and the kinds of classroom practices that promote student engagement, understanding, and action.

Below we introduce four resources that will help educators adapt Re-imagining Migration’s approach in their educational settings. They include:

  • Our Learning Arc a question-based thematic sequencing of content for a study of human migration.
  • Dispositions for a World on the Move five core dispositions that we deem essential to navigate a world on increasing mobility, diversity, and complexity.
  • Our Classroom Resources including lesson plans, primary and secondary sources, visual texts, as well as audio and video content for teaching.
  • Thinking Routines thinking structures or malleable micro-teaching tools carefully designed to be used in a wide range of learning spaces to promote the dispositions we have identified below.

Classroom practice is where each of these elements overlaps and come to life.

Where to start?

If you are new to our approach, we suggest you begin by developing an understanding of Re-imagining Migration’s learning arc and then identify the dispositions that you seek to nurture in your students. Once you are clear about where you are in the learning arc and your learning goals, review our resource collection, and select content that is academically and developmentally appropriate for your students. After you have identified foundational texts and resources for your lesson or unit, turn to our collection of thinking routines to consider the teaching tools and strategies you will use to engage learners in the pursuit of inquiry and understanding.

Our Learning Arc for teaching about migration responds to the third question in our framework: “How can we best engage with the topic of migration across the curriculum?”

The Learning Arc is guided by our belief that understanding migration requires more than remembering information. Instead, we believe understanding migration entails having the capacity to reason one’s way through and respond to a situation, a media report, or mass displacement in a way that allows us to advance and consider possible explanations, interpret or contextualize perspectives, and compare present developments with past ones. To engage migration in this way educators will need to deepen their own understanding of migration, and continuously explore of key questions that arise related to making educating about migration accessible across disciplines and age groups.

To facilitate this process, our Learning Arc raises fundamental questions about our shared human experience: Who are we? Where do we come from? Why do people leave their homes? What is the meaning of borders? Who is responsible for the people who straddle more than one nation? What is my responsibility in constructing welcoming and inclusive societies?

How do I use the learning arc?

Our Learning Arc creates a suggested framework for learning and teaching about migration and does so by raising key questions that build on one another surrounding the experience of migration. We invite you to explore the Learning Arc in its entirety before beginning on your curriculum planning journey.

While we believe there is lasting educational value in following the entire Learning Arc, we recognize educators may choose to concentrate on particular questions or subsections of the arc. Our Curriculum Building Tool is intended to help you achieve this goal, and will help you use the Learning Arc to design learning experiences, interdisciplinary curricula, and academic inquiry following the design.

Print a copy of the full LEARNING ARC with additional guiding questions.

Re-imagining Migration’s EDUCATION FRAMEWORK identifies five core dispositions that we deem essential to navigate a world on increasing mobility, diversity, and complexity.  One way to think about the dispositions is as the overarching learning goals of curriculum preparing young people for a world on the move. They are briefly described below, highlighting cognitive as well as social, emotional, and ethical dimensions of learning and development. Follow the link at the bottom for more detail.

  • The capacity, sensitivity, and inclination to Understand Perspectives.
  • The capacity, sensitivity, and inclination to Inquire in a World Shaped by Migration.
  • The capacity, sensitivity, and inclination to Communicate and Build Relationships Across Difference.
  • The capacity, sensitivity, and inclination to Recognize Inequities.
  • The capacity, sensitivity, and inclination to Take Action Towards Inclusive and Sustainable Societies.

Follow this LINK to learn more about the core dispositions we seek to nurture in order to advance the education and well-being of immigrant-origin youth, decrease bias and hatred against these youth and help all young people develop the understanding and habits of mind, heart, and civic participation to nurture inclusive communities and healthy democracies.

Re-imagining Migration creates and curates resources, including lesson plans, primary sources and literary text, videos, audio stories, blogs, art, and political cartoons, for use with students to promote a deeper understanding of the experience of migration. We have aligned these resources to the Re-imagining Migration learning arc to help educators select appropriate resources to support their learning goals. Many of the resources are paired with reflection questions, pedagogical suggestions, as well as thinking routines that can be used to bring these resources to life in teaching. As you will see, our focus in suggesting classroom activities and reflection questions prioritizes inquiry, analysis, perspective-taking, and moral/ethical inquiry over suggestions for scaffolding text. We have made that choice because, not because we do not recognize the importance of these strategies, but because we recognize the wide range of learners and educational settings that are likely to access the resources we are creating and collecting.

Over time, we seek to develop a library that features the ways that educators from across learning ecosystems are using the collection. In the meantime, you can find examples of the kind of educational practices we seek to promote on our blog. Please reach out to us if you have a model practice that you would like to share with our network.

Click on any of the selections below to begin to explore our collection.

MOVING STORIES

UNDERSTANDING MIGRATION

TURNING TO ACTION

How can we, as educators, respond to the demands of a more diverse, complex, and dynamic world, nurturing among young people the habits of mind that matter through the use of powerful pedagogies and practical tools?

We have developed a competency-based framework to describe the capacities and dispositions that will best prepare students to develop their full human potential and participate in the construction of inclusive, equitable, and sustainable societies. This work draws on Project Zero’s long-standing research on “thinking routines” to offer concrete and accessible tools that you can use to nurture these dispositions across ages, contexts (classrooms, museums, community organizations) and curricular areas disciplines.

This page links to thinking routines that are aligned to the dispositions highlighted in our framework. They can be used to support the use of any of the educational resources on our site.

The thinking routines collected here promote habits of mind such as the disposition to inquire about the world, discern local-global significance, compare stories, contexts, and cultures, take cultural perspective and challenging stereotypes among others. They are thinking structures or malleable micro-teaching tools carefully designed to be used in a wide range of learning spaces. Meant to be used frequently, across content, over time, and as an integral part of a learning environment, these routines are essential contributors to creating a classroom culture where learners are engaged thoughtfully and their thoughts and voices take center stage.

A few characteristics drive global thinking routines: GTRs are:

  • Cognitively elegant thinking sequences rooted in close analysis of forms of thinking embodied in each disposition
  • Open-ended, assuming no right or wrong answer but able to make learners’ thinking visible.
  • Simple in design, low threshold for use, and high ceiling for growth and refinement.
  • Useful as informal or formal diagnostic and assessment tools– i.e., as micro-interventions that make students’ thinking visible
  • Usable by learners individually and in groups as structures to scaffold their own thinking and self-assess.
  • Useful for researchers as pre- and post- measures of students developing targeted capacities
  • Effective in contributing to a culture of  thoughtfulness, appreciation and social interactions
  • Inviting for teachers to inquire about their own practice.

Follow this LINK to access the thinking-routine collection.

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