Teaching ideas


Lesson 1: Terminology

Learning outcome

Participants will be able to identify the similarities and differences between asylum seekers, refugees, migrants and internally displaced persons.

Lesson resources

Step 1. Brainstorming

Conduct a brainstorming activity to find out what students already know about people from refugee backgrounds.

An example of a brainstorming activity is the KWL activity (Know, Want to know, Learned) as shown below.

Ask students to complete the first column at the beginning of the lesson, writing down all of the information they already know about the question: Who is a refugee? Discuss answers in small groups or as a class. Ask students to think about what they need to learn more about and questions they could use to research the answers. Ask them to write their questions in the second column.

What I already know What I want to know What I learned


Step 2. Definitions

Refer students to Roads to Refuge » Who is a refugee » Definitions.
Ask students to discuss the similarities and differences between the following terms:

  • Refugee
  • Asylum seeker
  • Migrant
  • Stateless person
  • Internally displaced person (IDP)

Step 3. Researching the refugee experience

This website incorporates the experiences of many different people from refugee backgrounds. The list of interviewees provides a list of the people interviewed to make the Roads to Refuge website and DVDs.

Select individual case studies from the website (including the DVDs) and ask students to answer the questions below:

  • Where is the person from?
  • How old was the person when they left their home?
  • Did they leave alone? Who did they travel with?
  • Did anyone help them leave?
  • What was the reason they had to leave?

Step 4. Writing activity

Ask students to choose one person and write a speech to introduce that person to their classmates.

Step 5. Conclusion

Have students return to the KWL activity and complete the section ‘What I learned’. Ask them to discuss and compare responses in small groups. Then ask each group to provide feedback to the whole class.