School Competition Awards

How to Talk About Migrations? Competition for primary and secondary Scottish schools

In recognition of the fantastic work  on the theme of migration the book tokens were awarded to:

Broomhill Primary School ???

King’s Park Secondary School ???


To find out more and read the feedback from our award committee click on the name of school.

This competition was funded by the Royal Society of Edinburgh, as part of the project How to Talk About Migrations? Current Academic Research in Migration Studies and its Relevance for School Curriculum in Scotland and Further Afield

We invited pupils and teachers to participate in this exciting competition that explored how we teach and learn about migration — creatively and with empathy.

We live in a world that sees many people on the move, and our pupils may have been part of these experiences themselves. In schools, migration may make the topic of creative projects and classroom activities — a unique opportunity for pupils to learn from each other and about each other.

Through this competition, we wanted to bring forward the best and most creative ideas on teaching and learning about migrations in Scottish schools. We wanted to hear about teaching activities/practices and/or activities that may enable conversations about migration in schools – from language learning, literature, history, to personal experiences. The competition aimed to acknowledge and make visible the cultural and linguistic diversity of Scottish primary and secondary schools. The purpose of this competition was to explore how to raise awareness and learn about migration, and move conversations beyond narrow and often negative stereotypes. We advocate and understand migration as a multifaceted and omnipresent fact of life, and the submissions for this competition reflected this vision.


Primary School Award: Broomhill Primary School

Congratulations to Broomhill Primary School for the fantastic work pupils did on the theme of migration.


From Professor Susan Bassnett:

This is a hugely impressive entry. The pupils, under the guidance of Mr Lewis Mills have really engaged with the topic of migration in very creative ways. The three thematic units are equally strong in different ways and I found them all very moving.

Theme 1 concerns the journeys undertaken by refugees, inspired by Onjali Rauf’s novel, The Boy at the Back of the Class and uses the image of an eye to show the kind of traumatic scenes refugees might have to face.

Theme 2 about the conflict in Ukraine brought tears to my eyes as one after another the children faced the camera and expressed their hopes in a more peaceful future. I particularly liked the questions asked about sport, entertainment, the weather in Poland etc which is a wonderful way of making connections.

Theme 3 takes up the subject of racial prejudice and the animation does a great job in showing how hurtful casual racism can be and how important it is for this to be acknowledged so that genuine friendships can be built.

Congratulations to pupils and teacher at Broomhill – this is a brilliant entry.

Professor Susan Bassnett, School of Modern Languages and Cultures, University of Glasgow

From Professor Stephen Forcer:

I was extremely impressed by the thoughtfulness and maturity of these submissions. As adults we can learn a lot from what these pupils have noticed, said and written! I was especially struck by the extent to which the experiences of people seeking refuge are unseen and hidden. In the animated movie, I really liked the way a bad experience became a starting point for friendship, rather than being the end of the story. There’s an important point here to do with thinking about our actions, and about the chances to repair relationships and build new friendships. The whole class film was brilliant. The pupils showed fantastic interest in what’s happening to people in other countries, asked great questions, and communicated not only words but also hope and friendship to people in Ukraine.

Professor Stephen Forcer, School of Modern Languages and Cultures, University of Glasgow

Secondary School Award: King’s Park Secondary School

Congratulations to King’s Park Secondary School for the fantastic work 2L2 pupils did on the theme of migration in the entry entitled The Kooks (2L2 class “recipe” poems).

From Professor Susan Bassnett:

This is a really impressive creative writing project, guided by Ms Kirsten McMullan. Pupils read Benjamin Zephaniah’s ‘recipe’ poem ‘The British (serves 60 million)” and wrote their own personal recipes to show their very different heritages. The poems are gathered together as ‘The Kooks’, a piece of wordplay that sets the mood for what follows. I enjoyed reading them so much I would have liked more and have been thinking about writing my own recipe poem. Well-done to King’s Park for a terrific project and congratulations to pupils and teacher.

Professor Susan Bassnett, School of Modern Languages and Cultures, University of Glasgow

From Professor Stephen Forcer:

I loved these ‘recipes’ that pupils had written about themselves, based on Benjamin Zephaniah’s work. You captured Zephaniah’s humour and spirit but you also made the recipes your own. I was also struck by the range of personalities and background. You remind us that we are all from somewhere, and that that somewhere is particular to us. Thank you for sharing yourselves and the ingredients that make you up!

Professor Stephen Forcer, School of Modern Languages and Cultures, University of Glasgow