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News 2010
News ->First teaching resource on Bengali migration launched

First teaching resource on Bengali migration launched
6th July 2010

Bangla StoriesThe UK’s first teaching resource on Bengali migration was launched on 6th July 2010 at the the House of Lords by Baroness Pola Uddin. Compiled by race think tank Runnymede, the website and teaching pack is based on an extensive multi-site research project led by researchers at London School of Economics and Political Science. Bangla Stories is aimed at Key Stage 3 pupils of all backgrounds. It focuses on the remarkable journeys of eight individuals who left the state of Bengal after 1947. The stories told include that of 75-year-old Anwara who is a landless refugee living in Satkhira, south-west Bangladesh, Aleya Parveen who arrived in Britain as a bride in 2006, and Jubair Ahmed who came to the UK as a teenager in the 1980s and now runs a takeaway in Essex.


These case studies paint a vivid picture of the changing experiences of migration and aim to teach children why ordinary people move from country to country. The resource is the result of a major study into Bengali migration, which was undertaken by the London School of Economics and Political Science. The lesson plans are primarily focused on Key Stage 3 English but also provide a cross-curriculum experience linking Citizenship, History, Geography and PSHE.

Commenting on Bangla Stories, the lead researcher on the project, Dr Claire Alexander of LSE’s Sociology Department, said: “We are hoping the material from the research will inspire young people, whatever their background or heritage, to learn more about their families' histories, and engage creatively with the journeys and struggles that have helped shape multicultural Britain today".

She added: “Through these powerful personal stories of Bengalis in Britain, India and Bangladesh, we can view some of the experiences of migration and settlement that have defined the late 20th century, to think about how and why people move, and how they create new homes in unfamiliar places. Migrants have always played a crucial role in making Britain, and these stories recognise and celebrate the contribution of one community to this rich tapestry”.

Rob Berkeley, Runnymede Director, noted, "Immigration policy is politically sensitive but we cannot lose sight of the individuals and families involved in migration. This resource enables young people to understand the dynamics of migration and the contribution that migrants make to our society".

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