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Lesson Plans

Immigration Policy Brief

Professor Mindelyn Buford II, from Northeastern University in Boston, has partnered with American Immigration Council by sharing some of her best practices and practical lesson plans for preparing high school and university level students to understand how policy is shaped and how the issue of immigration can be approached in classroom and the community at large. 

Here are some excellent examples of policy briefs by students this year in Dr. Buford's class:

2nd Generation Haitians in the Boston Court System by Alexandra Parente

Improving Education Opportunities for 2nd Generation Dominicans by James Lothrop

Second Generation Colombian Immigrants and Healthcare by Ivana Freitas

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Immigration Past, Present, and Future

Educator Katrien Vance as part of the Community Connections Grants created a curriculum that investigates the waves of immigration and has students look at current issues of immigration by reading articles and interviewing members of their community who immigrated.  The lessons look at the past, present and future and have students use multimedia and programs like econgress to communicate with decision makers.

To see the full lesson plan and resources view the links below:




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Immigrants VS Refugees

Immigrants VS Refugees was created to leave students with a clear idea of what the legal distinction between an immigrant and a refugee is, and to provoke critical thought about whether this distinction is clear-cut, meaningful and/or useful. Students will develop critical thinking skills as well as obtain factual information on the distinction between immigrants and refugees.

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Wagner-Rogers Bill Debate

The Wagner-Rogers Bill - Debate lesson allows students to develop and hear the arguments for and against the Wagner-Rogers bill by taking part in a mock Congressional debate on the bill. Students are encouraged to develop and listen to persuasive testimony and speeches, and to come up with creative strategies to change the legislation in ways in which it might be more acceptable.

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High School Lesson Plan 3: Issues in Immigration

The Issues in Immigration series consists of three parts or modules listed below. Each module is designed to teach secondary students about immigration and immigrant conflicts, myths and facts. The lesson will also increase student awareness about immigration issues.

Module One: Debate

Module Two: The Lost Boys of Sudan

Module Three: Lost Childhoods - Unaccompanied Children

"Behind the Mountains" by Edwidge Danticat

Behind the Mountains teaches secondary students the value of immigration and increases student awareness of the adjustments faced by immigrants while developing their reading, writing, research, discussion, and literary response skills.

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Immigration Themes in Film & Literature

Immigration Themes in Film & Literature uses literature and film to introduce high school students to various ways writers, poets, and filmmakers have depicted the immigrant experience in the United States.

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From War on Terror to War on Bias

The objective of From War on Terror to War on Bias is to broaden the view students may have of Iraqi and Muslim immigrants. Students will examine current stereotypes and other forms of judgment as well as gain insight into the struggles immigrants face while adapting to a new culture.

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Oral History - Creating an Immigration Museum

Oral History - Creating an Immigration Museum will aid students in developing a deeper understanding of the immigrant experience through a series of Oral History projects-interviews, writing, research and art-culminating in the creation of an Immigration Museum.

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No Pretty Pictures by Anita Lobel

Illustrated with her family photographs, and written in a straightforward prose, No Pretty Pictures offers valuable lessons on the Holocaust and survival for adolescent readers. In this lesson, students will read, reflect and use maps and text to study the "push-pull factors" of the immigrant experience.

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