Muhammed’s father and sister are already relocated in Germany. His mother and two sisters remain in the camp at Alexandria. Germany seems to be the country, at the moment, that is accepting the most refugees that are in limbo in Greece. Therefore, I have based my ideas on implementation and connection between the camp and Germany. In an educational context, all activities for young children would involve literacy and numeracy skills that are based on their Syrian school curriculum, the Greek curriculum for those children who are lucky enough to attend local schools or based on the German school curriculum. Syrian teachers and local Greek teachers, as well as teachers in Germany (connecting through eSpace activities) would implement the particular curriculum to allow the children to maintain their own language, culture, skills etc as well as learning more about Greece and Germany.
The Refugee Support Greece organisation has amazing volunteers working in Alexandria and through their Facebook page, I think it is possible to make a connection with the organisation to implement the ideas described below. One of their objectives is to set up a free shop. Wouldn’t it be wonderful, and totally achievable, to have the same sort of ‘free shop’ for school materials, art supplies, books, toys and games. It would be set up to have suitable items returned for further use by other children within the camp.
Ideas for implementation in Alexandria are…
Art In A Bag #oneartisttoanother #backpackartists #campkids4art
Just as the children in the video below receive essential stationary in their bags, backpacks would be filled with art materials and ideas worksheets for activities for those supplies. Schools would start a social action group to collect backpacks and materials, donated by families within the school, the community and local businesses for a specific refugee camp that has a Child-Friendly Space for learning. Backpacks would include card-making materials with coloured pens, glitter pens, stickers, stamps etc and small canvases would be included with various tubes of paint, water colour pencils, brushes etc. These would be sent back to the schools to become an art exhibition with the artwork being sold to raise money to buy more backpacks and materials to send on to another refugee camp.
There would be backpacks that have play dough and modelling clay included with implements to roll, cut, imprint etc or backpacks with papers, scissors, cut out stamps, glue sticks etc. The ideas are endless but as research shows, art is a wonderful way for children to express themselves.
Retrieved from YouTube, UNICEFmena, UNICEF, with EU support, doubled efforts to reach children with school supplies
The Art In A Bag program would be provided to all children aged 3-12years. It would be developed as part of the psychosocial and creativity programs run within the Safe Space to learn. The art program would link lessons for pleasure, for communication and for therapy. Daily lessons would be for 30-60 minutes, dependant on the age of the children.
A Welcome Book #welcomebook #learnalittleaboutus #welcome2germany
With many of the children in Alexandria hoping to relocate to Germany, schools there would make books to welcome the children to a new country. They would share favourite places, foods, games etc to help the children become familiar with their new homeland. This project would be done from any country that is accepting refugees. Here in Australia, the ABC current affairs for children program Behind The News, BtN did this as part of a story on refugees. See their ideas for The Welcome Book.
The children in Alexandria would send their own written and illustrated books to the schools in Germany sharing their stories of where they have come from and what it is like to go to school in the camp. It would be a book where they could share some of their hope for their schooling when they relocate.
This article ‘Draw their Dreams’ documents what Syrian children would like the school in their refugee camps to look like.
Another option for the older children in Alexandria to share their stories is to use the MY:24 app. They could also use this app to work with the younger children to be able to tell their stories. As described on the App Store…
MY:24 is a digital storytelling app that allows you to make a short movie about a day that changed your life forever. It is inspired by the TV series MY:24 – a collection of stories from young people who have experienced one day that changed their life forever. Through writing responses to a series of questions, uploading photos, recording voice over narrations and filming yourself and your close friends who know your story, the MY:24 app will magically create a short micro-documentary of your own.
So what’s your MY:24 story? It could have happened in a minute or it could have taken 24 hours; whatever it was, it was an individual turning point that meant life was never the same again – that day changed the way you look at the world, the future and yourself.
The Welcome Book program would be provided to all children aged 3-12years. It would be developed as part of the psychosocial, creativity and literacy programs run within the Child-Friendly Space to learn. Daily lessons would be for 30-60 minutes, dependant on the age of the children. The MY:24 program would be provided to all children aged 8-12years (children aged 3-7 could work with older children to produce their own story in this app). It would be developed as part of the psychosocial, creativity and literacy programs run within the Child-Friendly Space to learn. Lessons would be 60 minutes until the task is completed.
Online Language Classes #learnalanguage #talktome #letslearntogether
Learning a new language for refugee children is important for them to be able to assimilate into their new schools when they move to a new homeland. There are wonderful programs that children can access on a mobile device or on computers if their classrooms are equipped with them. Also, children in Germany or wherever else the children may be relocated to, would be learning Syrian so they have some words and phrases that they can use to interact with the children and make them feel welcome when they arrive. Free programs to be accessed include…
The Online Language program would be provided to all children aged 3-12years. It would be developed as part of the literacy and speaking and listening programs run within the Child-Friendly Space to learn. Daily lessons would be for 30-60 minutes, dependant on the age of the children.
Mindfulness & Movement #getupanddance #moveandgroove #strikeapose
Children need to move. Children need to play. Children need quiet moments. Children need to establish resilience, perseverance and a growth mindset. Due to the situations that the children in Alexandria have already been exposed to, positive programs to develop their self-worth are of vital importance. In the absence of playgrounds, they also need to have opportunities for fun movement activities. The following interactive programs would allow them to have regular activities that are both mentally and physically stimulating. They will also establish good models of self-efficacy and self-reflection. The programs allow for there to be interaction between schools so a connection would be established between Alexandria and Germany. They are also set up so that parents can be involved in their activities. This is a wonderful opportunity for families that are separated to be involved in their child’s learning despite being away from the camp.
The ClassDojo and GoNoodle programs would be provided to all children aged 3-12years. It would be developed as part of the literacy, speaking and listening, psychosocial and physical education programs run within the Child-Friendly Space to learn. Daily lessons would be for 30-60 minutes, dependant on the age of the children. Parents would be an active part of the learning in these programs.