Refugees: contributions, creativity and resilience

These resources celebrate 20 years of Refugee Week helping learners to build empathy and understand the contributions, creativity and resilience of refugees. 

Refugees in workshop
Lesson Plan
Refugees and migration

These session plans mark Refugee Week and can also be used throughout the year to help learners increase their knowledge and build their understanding of what life can be like for refugees and asylum seekers.

Activities are differentiated for primary and secondary learners and include discussion questions, a walking debate, creative activities and video case studies. Key facts and terms are included for educators, along with guidance of how to manage discussions sensitively.

Resource overview

  • Key facts for educators
    An overview of the key terms commonly used when speaking about refugees and asylum seekers, plus background information to help educators feel more confident when talking about this subject.

  • Overview
    An introduction to the suggested learning pathway, how to get the most out of the resource and curriculum links.

  • Activity 1: Initial views
    In this walking debate activity, learners have the chance to consider how they feel about the topic before learning more about it.

  • Activity 2: Developing understanding and building empathy 
    Learners explore the terms used in discussions about refugees and asylum seekers, learn about the reasons why people may leave their homes and watch a short film about a young refugee from Syria. 

  • Activity 3: Thinking about resilience
    Learners consider some of the challenging circumstances that refugees and asylum seekers may face on a daily basis and how these can be overcome. 

  • Activity 4: Coping through creativity
    Through watching a short film about a young refugee choir, learners will discuss how creativity can help strengthen resilience and apply this to their own lives. 

  • Activity 5: Shifting positions and hope for the future
    To sum up what they have learned, learners will consider one simple act they can do to contribute to Refugee Week 2018 and will compare how their ideas and attitudes towards refugees and asylum seekers may have changed. 


Video: Everyday People


These resources were written by Rob Bowden and Rosie Wilson of Lifeworlds Learning and published in May 2018.

The video of Everyday People © British Red Cross.

With thanks to Music Action International, who initiated and funded the Everyday People group. This charity helps people around the world to use the power of creativity to overcome the effects and causes of war, torture and armed conflict.