Here at Re-imagining Migration, we are currently developing an educational framework that outlines capacities and dispositions for a world on the move,
We hope this framework will help educators be intentional about the selection of texts and media for their curriculum. Our goals are to help educators create inclusive, culturally responsive, and reflective learning environments that nurture the skills and lessons students need to thrive in a world on the move. Working on this framework has strengthened our understanding of the powerful role that storytelling plays in understanding the experiences of a wide range of migrant-origin* communities — learning from each others’ stories helps us place our own in context.
- Where do we come from?
→ What is life like for people before they migrate?
- Why do people leave their homes?
→ What factors motivate people to leave their homes?
- What happens to our identities while crossing borders?
Bordercrossing is more than a legal experience, crossing borders involvesquestions of culture and identity as well. In the media that you consume and introduce to your students, how are identity struggles represented?
- Statelessness: Who is responsible for people on the move?
→ Who is responsible for displaced people?
→ How do nations decide who can settle and who cannot? And, how
do nationsreceive immigrants, migrants andrefugees?
→ How are these tensions depicted in the media you discuss with your class?
- What are the conditions in the new land and how do they shape patterns of migration?
→ What policies, attitudes & expectations exist about migrants, immigrants
→ What are the lessons that your students can learn from the characters in stories? How are certain messages emphasized to these characters? How do those reflect the climate of the time period the media piece is set in?
- What are the public stories of migration and how do they influence the way we think about the civic challenges related to migration?
→ What are people hearing about immigration through the press, social media and political & thought leaders?
→ How are the stories they are hearing both similar and different to the lives they are introduced to through media?
- How do local stories of migration relate to global patterns of people moving around the world?
→ How do localized experiences reflect the bigger picture?
→ How can we contextualize what we are learning to a larger frame?
→ In the case of media, how do stories reflect larger patterns and narratives about migration?
- How do individuals, communities and nations receive and integrate newcomers into the land?
→ How do newcomers learn about life in the new land? How do they come to understand what is expected of them? What are the formal and legal traditions designed to integrate newcomers? What are the informal messages sent about what is necessary to
→ Are newcomers supposed to give up their identities and cultures in order to fit in? Recognizing that integration involved both newcomers but the larger society as well, do the traditions of newcomers become accepted, and even adapted and adopted by society at large?
→ How are these questions playing out in the media you teach? How does it address the attitudes of belonging and inclusion?
- How can we take action toward more inclusive and sustainable societies?
→ How do people build bridges between migrants and the larger society?
→ In the
mediayou are consuming and teaching (whether literature, film, TV, etc.) where do you find examples of bridge builders?
→ Beyond that, how do your schools and surrounding communities welcome newcomers? What are you doing to build connections?
*migrant-origin: we chose to use “migrant” as we want to be inclusive of all people on the move, ranging from immigrants, migrants, refugees, asylees, displaced peoples, and others.