As we look back at 2015 and spotlight our most popular education blogs, newsletters, and lessons, it is abundantly clear; the need to teach about immigration critically and factually is in high demand.
As you may know, the American Immigration Council is a non-profit organization and we rely greatly on the support of our constituents to fund the work we do.
We look forward to empowering teachers like you to help students think critically and creatively about immigration through lesson plans, professional development, creative writing contest, and teacher grants and we hope the value you see in our work is worth your monthly support or one-time gift.
Now, without further ado, our most popular resources of 2015!
Top 5 Blogs
- Building Diverse and Inclusive School Communities – Our most popular blog is a book review of Eileen Gale Kugler’s Innovative Voices in Education: Engaging Diverse Communities, which stands out for its honest and multi-layered approach to creating a pluralistic school environment for students and families.
- How Immigrant Students Strengthen American Schools – As a guest blogger, Eileen Gale Kugler writes about the benefits and values immigrant students bring to American schools.
- The Power of Poetry and the Immigration Experience – We developed and curated some poetry activities and resources to read, write, and learn about immigration experiences through the transformative and empathetic lens of poetry.
- Interpreting César Chávez’s Legacy with Students – We offer several ways educators of all levels can teach about César Chávez’s life and legacy with students including with our bilingual lesson plan which encourages students to read Chavez’s own recollections of his adolescence as a migrant farm worker and interpret how that influenced his later achievements.
- Announcing the Winners of the 18th Annual Celebrate America Fifth Grade Creative Writing Contest – We honor our fifth grade winner, Anya Frazer, and runners-up of our nationwide Celebrate America Creative Writing Contest who wrote on the theme “Why I’m Glad America is a Nation of Immigrants.” We receive on average 4,500 entries per year – and it’s not too late to participate in the 2016 contest!
- Addressing Concerns for Some Immigrant Students – We highlight resources, tips, legal and mental health concerns for educators working with recently immigrated students.
- Welcoming Immigrant Students into the Classroom – This article also published on Edutopia offers some streamlined tips and best practices for creating an inclusive, positive environment for these students.
- Teaching Freedom, Fairness and Equality – This social justice article and lesson draws on connections between the power of youth civic engagement and principals of the civil rights movement.
- Digital Learning on Immigration: Quick Lessons for Students by Students – This article introduces our digital learning guide, which matches historical political cartoons with short films produced by students on current immigration topics and then asks student-viewers to analyze and draw connections.
- A New Resource for Addressing Some Concerns of Immigrant Students – The U.S. Department of Education published a comprehensive resource guide this year to support undocumented youth with a focus on secondary student access to higher education which you can learn about in the newsletter.
Top 5 Lesson Plans
- Crossing Borders with Digital Storytelling – Using digital storytelling to capture immigration stories is a powerful way for teachers to create opportunities for “empathetic moments” among students and shape classroom environments.
- Immigration Status Privilege Walk – Students engage in an interactive activity and learn the ‘benefits’ and ‘limitations’ conferred by a fictional immigration status.
- Migrant Workers Social Justice Project – In a service-learning project, students brought awareness and assistance to migrant farm workers as a result of our community grant awarded to Delia Lancaster, a teacher at St. Joseph Catholic School in Palm Bay, Florida. Use this lesson plan to create a similar service-learning initiative in your community.
- Interpreting the Legacy of César Chávez – In this immigration lesson plan, students will understand how Cesar Chavez’s adolescence as a migrant farm worker influenced his later achievements.
- The First American Settlers and the First Thanksgiving – Bookmark this lesson for next year as students learn and discuss the myths and facts surrounding the first Thanksgiving and the first immigrants and identify dominant and resistant readings of this national holiday.
We’d love to hear how you’ve used our resources (you can send us an email) and we hope many of you are inspired to use them in 2016! We will continue to push out new materials so you can teach about immigration past and present with students of all ages.