Implementation of ‘Writing home: coping with migration’ (SOI-GR-35)

How are migrants connected with the homeland? What kind of memories could an everyday treasure wake up? This Story of implementation, based on the LS “Writing home: coping with migration” gives us an example of teaching Geography, History, and Language through Europeana’s galleries.

Title: Writing home: coping with migration – implementation

Topic: Migration – Ports as a meeting point for migrants

Author: Angeliki Kougiourouki


The story of implementation was organized around the learning scenario “Writing Home: coping with migration” and as a follow-up plan of activities of the Learning Scenario: “Shall we meet at the harbour?”. During the implementation, there were some changes in the initial lesson due to the different level of education and to the start point (letters). But the main idea and modules that Mr Andreas Galanos had planned were respected.

First step: introduction to the concept of migration

The starting point of the implementation for the students of the 5th Primary School was a text from the Geography book titled: Greeks’ migration. As well as the corresponding photograph depicting the return of Greeks from Georgia, of which the writer of this SOI was a witness in 1993 at Alexandroupoli’s port. Students read about migration both from the school book and from the Wikipedia link suggested in the learning scenario (LS). They were informed about the places of Greek migration both from their own book and from the source indicated in the LS. Then, they brainstormed about feelings that an immigrant may have and created a word cloud. Click here to discover it!

Using Europeana resources to awake students’ empathy

We then visited the Europeana gallery as suggested by the author of the learning scenario. Students commented on letters, cards, photos and telegrams available on the portal. In particular, students emphasised on photographs and telegrams, which are an unknown way of communication for today’s pupils.

The second module proposed in the initial LS had as a starting point a traditional Greek song with the title: Της ξενιτιάς from students’ book: Ανθολόγιο Λογοτεχνικών Κειμένων Ε & ΣΤ  Δημοτικού (Βιβλίο μαθητή). Students discussed and identified the elements that connect the migrant with the homeland, based on the song listening.

Later, they visited the collection of immigrants’ objects suggested in the LS, reading the corresponding stories.

During the third module, students distinguished the objects and made the most of them, according to the age group and the level of education they belong to. They formed 5 groups according to the selected items in order to give them a voice:

These items inspired students to write letters or stories.

Καράβια μας καράβια σας,
 Music Library of Greece of The Friends of Music Society

Finally, encouraged by a song related to migration that they heard during the implementation of the “Shall we meet at the harbour?” learning scenario, they visited the related to migration Europeana’s song gallery and created a repository of corresponding songs which they chose from Europeana’s gallery according to the follow-up activity proposed in the LS: ‘writing home: coping with migration’.

More specifically, they chose the following songs:

In conclusion

The implementation of this LS encouraged students to share ideas, opinions and emotions while discussing the reasons that force people to migrate. They had the chance to see old postcards, letters, even telegrams discussing the ways of communication and the connection that immigrants have with the homeland. Europeana’s gallery “Everyday treasures” track their emotions and inspired them to write similar letters and to read them loudly into the classroom. Last but not least, students felt proud of creating a song gallery with songs about migration. 

Did you find this story of implementation interesting? Why don’t you read about the related learning scenario?

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Do you want to discover more stories of implementation? Click here.

The featured image used to illustrate this article belongs to the public domain. Click here to find it.

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