The first lesson of the day was a game of hangman. The children have become much more adept and canny when playing. They used the strategy of choosing vowels first, then commonly occurring consonants. However, the challenge was trickier than expected, and we had to rely on Euanson’s knowledge of letter patterns to guess the word ‘migration’. I asked the children if they knew that the word meant and Olaseni said that he thought it was when people escaped to another country because of war. 10 house points Olaseni. His answer pleased me because it told me that he is well informed and aware of the problems faced by many people around the world but I was also saddened that he and his classmates are growing up in a world where this is a reason why people migrate.
We explored some of the other reasons why people move to a different country. Sometimes it is to escape the effects of a natural disaster, or often to flee from political oppression. Sometimes people migrate to seek better lives and opportunities, and to be near to their families.
After sharing stories of the journeys and migrations made by our families, I asked the children to imagine that they had to move suddenly to another country. We thought about where we would go, our reasons for leaving and how we would feel as we wrote a postcard to someone special to say goodbye. Ramtin, Hamza, Lubaya, Giselle, Sonny, Fatimah, Liam, Stella, Susan, Arman and Harley have really impressed me so far and I have no doubt that the finished work of many other children will also be very powerful.
This afternoon Mrs. Johnston reminded us of the other meaning of migration – when birds fly to a warmer place when the seasons change.
We began work on creating an art installation. Using a cardboard template, the children created on outline of a bird, which they filled with pattern and their base and complementary colours. 2D became 3D as the pictures were cut out and turned into models.
This impact of this project is extraordinary and our ACE community is incredibly fortunate to have Mrs. Johnston leading us on our journey.