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Different Approaches to Learning About Sanctuary

Nelson Mandela Community Primary School, Birmingham

‘Echo Eternal’ is a commemorative arts, media and civic engagement project inspired by the testimony of British survivors of the Holocaust recorded in interviews by Natasha Kaplinsky for the UK Holocaust Memorial Foundation. Children across the school listened to the words of Kurt Taussig, responding through artwork to his plight as he left his home and family as a refugee travelling to Britain. During their journey to become a Schools of Sanctuary, Nelson Mandela Community Primary School then organised learning activities to connect the themes and issues raised during their exploration of the Echo Eternal project to the experiences of today’s refugee children and the importance of making sure all children enjoy their rights.

Other learning activities students took part in included a poetry workshop with Vanwy, a poet from Warwick University. The thoughtful and emotive poems written provided the basis of the school’s performance at the Rights Respecting Schools Celebration event at Birmingham Repertory Theatre.

Finally, each year group was provided with a book (recommended from to help support empathy with refugee children. The School’s elected Rights Rangers chose the simple but poignant story My Name Is Not Refugee by Kate Milner to share with parents at our coffee morning on World Refugee day.