Language Education Policy Studies
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ONLINE RESOURCES (A FEW PLACES TO START) for Making Empathetic Multilingual Environments in Schools (MEMES)

The following are a few websites that have resources for teaching about the crisis and topic. At the bottom of the page are links for creating multilingual classrooms.

This is a non-profit international educational and professional development organization. The website has information, resources for teaching, seminars and workshops.

The American Federation of Teachers has a website with resources for teaching human rights at Two related units are called “A Nation of Immigrants”, and “Friends in Need: Refugees are People, Not Problems”.

Crisis Classroom offers free training for working with refugees. It may be a bit biased toward uncritically learning the language. They offer free courses for refugees and volunteers, “understanding the impact that trauma can have on learning and how to manage the overwhelming experiences that come with settling in to a new home".

Use these provocative videos to stimulate discussion.

A practical research initiative of 15 countries, using technology has three online modules and practical examples at which is a joint initiative to foster dialogue and action-based learning on policies and practices for leveraging appropriate technology to meet the urgent educational needs of refugees…and supports those who are looking for practical tips and solutions to this complex area….(It) compiles the most up-to-date research from over 15 countries that are affected by refugees … (It) is meant to help policy makers, practitioners…. This website by the Annenberg Learner (Foundation) has links and content resources for students about refugees and immigrations; also for teachers, including articles, photographs, activities, lesson plans, professional development, 

The U.N. Refugee Agency has resources in various European languages by age level. In English it includes a UNICEF Emergency Lessons toolkit, downloadable books, an interactive timeline of artists, musicians, and writers, a complete lesson plan by Amnesty International with activities explaining basic concepts drawn from example refugee stories including famous refugees, a few other games and activities. (Activities and resources may vary by language). This website by Amnesty International has links to eight educational resources: 1) Interactive activities, fictional stories for elementary and middle school in Seeking Safety and Time to Flee; 2) an educational online game by the UNHCR called Against All Odds where “gamers plunge into the world of a virtual character where they have to build a new life in a different country after they escape conflict.” The game is built on facts and short films, and comes with a teacher’s guide that includes exercises and discussion topics. 3) Another online activity by Amnesty International called Fleeing Syria has short videos and activities and is about a family trying to resettle in Norway. 4) The British Red Cross made Over Under Sideways Down, a comic book story with a resource pack, about the journey of a teenager. 5) A resource pack that uses five Hollywood films about refugees for Refugee Week; 6) Lesson Modules called Aids for Students that helps teachers integrate the theme into different subject areas; 7) a children’s book with lesson plans called The Enemy, a Book about Peace; and lastly 8) from Georgetown University Teaching about Refugees which six curriculum units: middle school lesson plans and creative activities like music- or video-making to raise awareness, based on field trips to Lebanon and Jordan. This is from the Refugee Council for Australia and has reports and information for policy and program-building. There are links to lesson plans for all levels and content areas called “Human Rights Examples for the Australian Curriculum”; a link to the Edmund Rice Centre that has a free publication Asylum Seekers and Refugees Education Resource that

provides activities for students which are practical, engaging and focused on increasing awareness about human rights and advocacy. Students are encouraged to think about asylum seekers and refugees with compassion, to move their understanding from the head to the heart.


The following website supports “educators working with English language learners in Canada, who have gaps in schooling, and may have experienced grief, trauma, and loss. It has many resources for those who teach refugees that have had limited formal schooling:


In the case of translanguaging and allowing plurilingualism in classrooms, strategies and resources for teaching in languages other than the language of instruction are more difficult to find and implement. The City University of New York (CUNY) has an online resource with pdfs, and videos to demonstrate and explain the translanguaging practices outlined in this chapter. In the absence of truly multilingual language education policies, this is what educators may try. You may visit to find the resources.

“Mom, can you help me write a sentence? I’m sorry. I don’t know how to do that.”

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This information was originally published on the website of the International Network for Language Education Policy Studies ( as

Harrison, K. M. (2017). Some Online Resources. Making Empathetic Multilingual Environments in Schools. In F. V. Tochon (Ed.), Language Education Policy Studies (online). Madison, WI: University of Wisconsin—Madison. Retrieved from: (access date). 
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