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Workshops/Talks for Primary, Secondary & Sixth Forms

Ipswich Town of Sanctuary offers workshops and talks for students from primary to sixth form. The sessions can be tailored to meet curriculum aims and objectives and compliment learning outcomes for specific modules.

We are passionate about raising awareness about the importance of “identity and belonging” and “communication and community”.

Becoming a School of Sanctuary

All sessions end with a film about the City of Sanctuary movement (which Ipswich Town of Sanctuary is part of). We like to suggest that the students consider whether they would like to take some positive action to make their school, a School of Sanctuary, for which they could gain an award from Ipswich Town of Sanctuary and get a visit by a local dignitary.

It is hoped that the impact of the session will be a positive one and that students will be enthused by the ideas presented. If the session is to have an outcome, then it would be useful if the school links the learning experience to other areas of the curriculum to enable students to take actions that improve conditions for everyone. Extending activities from this session would incorporate the aspects of social, moral, spiritual and cultural learning.

Ideas for the development of a School of Sanctuary:

Students could think about what kind of school their school is and conduct research on how the whole school community views the school. Groups of students could be allocated an area of the community to research or survey, such as opinions of teachers, EAL students, particular year groups, support staff, visitors, parents, maintenance staff etc. Research might be in the form of a “walk in someone else’s shoes”, a questionnaire, anonymous comment box, surveying the visual content of walls and classrooms etc.

Students could also think about what actions they might want to take to create a school that is a beacon of welcome to those arriving either as new students, staff or visitors.

Some ideas on how to create a School of Sanctuary:

Create a drama, welcome posters, display a “City of Sanctuary Welcome Sign”, welcome booklets, signs in other languages, a friendship club, international cookery club, international choir, befriending scheme for new arrivals to the school, collect and publish stories or create a film.

If you would like more information or wish to ask a question, please click here

For more information about the City of Sanctuary movement, please visit:

Reviews from Schools:

The focus of the session was clear, visual and inspired the children to show great empathy. By using real life situations, they were able to ‘put themselves into others’ shoes’ and appreciate that there are often two sides to a story.

The activities were creative and open-ended, perfect for enabling children to think for themselves. I particularly liked the one where the children had to imagine a tree as a person seeking asylum; this lead to such interesting comparisons. I was not sure about choosing activities for the children at first, but actually, it was thought provoking seeing children out of their “comfort zone”. One boy said, “I wouldn’t have chosen to sing a song, but people looking for sanctuary don’t have a choice either!”

If I would change anything, I would like more film biographies of children seeking sanctuary, from other parts of the world.

Overall, it was a fascinating afternoon and showed our pupils working collaboratively, using their initiative, and thinking on their feet.

Sarah Merchant
St Helen’s Primary School

If you would like Ipswich Town of Sanctuary to facilitate a Workshop, please email: [email protected]