New Immigrants Share Their Stories | Not in Our Town

New Immigrants Share Their Stories

Grade Level: 
Middle School (6-8)
High School (9-12)

New Immigrants Share Their Stories (Narrated by Yul Kwon)

The students of Newcomers High School in Long Island City, which specializes in teaching recent immigrants, and those of St. Luke's, a private middle school in Manhattan, have come together to dialogue about difference and combat bias. The Building Bridges project was created through a collaboration between Newcomers teacher Julie Mann, and St. Luke's teacher Kim Allen, who met ten years ago through a Facing History workshop. Ms. Mann's class of English-learners exchanged letters with their St. Luke's "buddies", and in the first of several meet-ups this year, received help editing their personal immigration stories. In return, St.Luke's students are preparing research papers on immigration informed by the interviews they conducted with their Newcomers buddies.  

This has been one of our most viewed videos. In 2013, Houghton Mifflin licensed use of it for a new digital textbook.

The student video diaries, a book of their stories and more information about their project can be found here. 

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This video is part of the Not In Our School Video Action Kit, a comprehensive tool kit featuring films, lessons, and resources designed to motivate students to speak out against bullying, and create new ways to make their schools safe for everyone. Learn more about the Video Action Kit.

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I love this interaction between students! At our middle school we had the English Learners go out into the community to learn about the stores, city buildings, streets, parks, etc. They were given a disposable camera to take pictures of their interests. They then used the pictures to create a book that told the story about the differences between their home town and the one they had just encountered. They presented the books to a small group of parents at the end of the year and felt good about the outcome. They presented to me and I was fascinated with their accomplishments and presentation techniques. Love it. Thank you for all that you are doing.

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