Refugees and asylum
Refugee themes can help young people explore fundamental issues across the curriculum in a rich and imaginative way.
Amnesty has produced a range of resources to explore this issue with your students:
Life Study, a film on the Human Rights Are Our Rights DVD which celebrates the 60th anniversary of the UDHR could be used as a stimulus for teaching about asylum.
An artist is creating a piece of artwork on December 10, Human Rights Day, and observes human rights issues in his community. In this clip he sees two friends sitting at a bus stop, discussing their situation. They fled persecution in their country and asked for asylum from the government, but their case was rejected. Left destitute, they are struggling to survive and to stay in the UK. They fear what might happen if they return to their own country.
Order: Life Study on Amnesty's Human Rights Are Our Rights DVD
firstname.lastname@example.org | +44 (0)1788 545 553 | Ref: English ED106 or Welsh ED107
Find out more:
Background info (pdf) Background on destitution of refused asylum seekers, the real stories behind the film and which rights are explored in it.
Age group: 11-16
A human rights education resource on refugees and asylum, aiming to help students understand why people become asylum seekers and the difficulties they face on arrival in another country. For use with young people exploring Citizenship/PSE or Geography. Available in English or Welsh language.
A Time To Flee (English) (pdf) | Amser I Ffoi (Cymraeg) (pdf)
Download sample threatening note (pdf)
Age group: 8 +
A set of playing cards commemorating the major contribution to UK society made by the hundreds of thousands of refugees who come here to seek asylum. Each illustrated card features someone with a refugee background and explains how he or she has been a 'credit to the nation'. Instructions for games and activities included.
Download + print your pack of cards
Age group: 6+
A selection of activities for primary classes to explore asylum and refugee issues in a participatory way. Created by our Edinburgh office for schools in Scotland, this is a great resource for schools anywhere in the UK.
The first activity is accompanied by Kids welcome asylum seekers. When will grown-ups catch up?, a thought-provoking two minute documentary on primary school children's experiences of asylum seekers, produced by Glasgow-based mediaco-op and funded by Oxfam Asylum Positive Images Project with support from ESF Equal Atlas Partnership.
To order your DVD email or call +44 (0)20 7033 1596 quoting product + delivery address
Education activities about a group of refugees escaping to freedom.
Age: 14 +
Product code: ED095
A powerful 2 minute film on the impact of detention on asylum seekers, suitable for use as a starter activity with students.
Email your order or call +44 (0)20 7033 1596 quoting product code + delivery address
Inspiration: Dispelling the Myths by Steve Sinnott
The Deputy General Secretary of the NUT writes about the importance of teaching about refugees and asylum seekers in schools.
- The Refugee Week website has a wide range of teaching resources, including the Simple Acts toolkit
- United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) website
Gallery of prominent refugees from around the world.
- Interactive game: Against All Odds
Through following a young person's flight from oppression in their home country to exile in an asylum country, this game has been developed by the UNHCR to increase students awareness and knowledge about where refugees come from, what situations they have faced and how they adapt to their new lives.
- Global Dimension website
Resources for teaching about refugees.
- Moving Here website
Four modules exploring why people have moved to the UK over the last 200 years, what are their experiences and what is their impact on British culture. Includes space to add your own migration story and browse stories other people have contributed.
- DVD: Who Am I?
A cross-curricular resource developed in collaboration with schools, family, friends, creative artists and others, to explore Somali history and its relevance to Somali people living in the UK.
- Book + CD: Young Diasporas, Longing and Belonging
Challenge misconceptions, highlight similarities and promote appreciation and understanding of different cultures through these stories of young people who live in Kent, but have roots and connections with other parts of the world. Suitable for KS2 and KS3 Geography, Citizenship, PSHE, and English.