Students are introduced to the concept of fear that features in many of the the stories of people seeking asylum. They enhance their understanding of seeking asylum as a result of factors that incite fear by reading and viewing informative and abstract texts. Using a range of thinking, analytical and creative tools, students will engage in a close reading of poetry to understand the power of language to capture emotions, encourage empathy and communicate experiences.
- engage with the concept and feeling of fear and consider how the experience of people seeking asylum is often a story of fear.
- understand how creative and imaginative texts, especially poetry, can be used to communicate significant and powerful meaning on complex and challenging issues.
- enhance their skills in analysing language choices to develop empathy and understanding about issues and fears driving people to seek asylum.
Lesson guides and printables
Australian Curriculum content descriptions:
Year 10 English:
- Compare and evaluate how ‘voice’ as a literary device can be used in a range of different types of texts such as poetry to evoke particular emotional responses (ACELT1643)
- Create sustained texts, including texts that combine specific digital or media content, for imaginative, informative, or persuasive purposes that reflect upon challenging and complex issues (ACELY1756)
- Refine vocabulary choices to discriminate between shades of meaning, with deliberate attention to the effect on audiences (ACELA1571)
Syllabus outcomes: EN5-3B, EN5-1A.
General Capabilities: Literacy, Personal and Social Capability, Ethical Understanding, Intercultural Understanding.
Relevant parts of Year 10 English achievement standards: Students explain how the choice of language features, images and vocabulary contributes to the development of individual style. They create a wide range of texts to articulate complex ideas.
Unit of work: Stories of Chasing Asylum – access the unit overview here.
Time required: 120 minutes.
Level of teacher scaffolding: High – facilitate class discussion and assess student work.
- Student Worksheet – one copy per student OR computers/tablets to access the online worksheet
- Device capable of audio/visual presentation to present a website to the class
- SPECS/SLIMS Framework, Poems (one per pair/groups of three): Home by Warsan Shire, We Refugees by Benjamin Zephaniah, Escape by Mercedes Killeen. Y-Chart (optional; one per student)
- Poetic Devices Glossary (optional; one per student)
This lesson is designed to build students’ competencies in the following skills:
- Critical thinking
- Ethical understanding
- Cultural understanding
- Global citizenship
- Digital literacy
- Social skills
Chasing Asylum exposes the real impact of Australia’s offshore detention policies through the personal accounts of people seeking asylum and whistleblowers who tried to work within the system. To watch the documentary, stream it on Kanopy and Clickview or purchase the DVD at the ATOM Education Shop.