Read the article 'Sowing seeds in a welcoming land’ and answer the following questions. Then share your answers in pairs, small groups or in a classroom discussion.
1. What is the definition of a refugee? Why does Abe Nouk consider himself lucky to have received refugee status?
2. Abe’s mother was told that she would have a better chance of getting asylum if she left some of her children behind. Why do think that is so?
3. Why do you think Abe chooses to maintain a positive attitude when faced with discrimination and racism?
4. What does it mean to be a part of a community? Do you feel like you’re a part of your community? Why or why not?
5. What talents or characteristics describe you best? How can you use these talents to give back to your community?
6. Abe’s mother has a favourite saying, ‘You can’t expect to get harvest where you have not sown seeds’. What do you think this means? How can you sow seeds in your community?
1. Abe is a published and award-winning poet. Watch some of his poetry online to understand his journey to Australia and literacy.
Melbourne Spoken Word 2016
Australian Poetry Slam 2015
2. Host a Poetry Slam at your school to raise awareness about asylum seekers and refugee rights.
3. Abe and his family are originally from Sudan. They sought asylum during the Second Sudanese Civil War. In pairs or small groups, research online the history of the Second Sudanese Civil War. What was were the origins of the conflict? How long did it last? Then discuss why people may seek asylum when living in a war-torn country.
4. Abe and his family had to pack suitcases in the middle of the night to catch a boat to Cairo. Write a one-page reflection on what it would be like for you to have to leave everything you knew behind for an unknown future.
Your teacher may expand this conversation to a class discussion.
For younger students
Teachers may summarise for or read the article, ‘Sowing seeds in a welcoming land’, to younger students. Teachers can discuss with their class what it means to be welcoming. Then, explain to students what is the definition of a refugee and some of the challenges refugees face when living in a new country. They can also describe the contributions immigrants and refugee have made to Australia.
Students can then write a poem about why it’s important for Australia stays a welcoming land.
If students feel comfortable they can share their poem with their class.