Czech Out These Immigrants

Oral History Project 2014

With the kick-off of Term 2, Grade 10 students began brainstorming for their upcoming Oral History Project. In the Immigration Fair’s fourth consecutive year, participants are once again challenged to create interesting and innovative presentations.

During class time on January 30th/31st, Oral History projects flooded the halls of St. George’s. After nearly a month of research and interviews, Grade 10 students presented their findings to their fellow students and teachers. After four years of the same project, presenters still managed to dazzle the audience with contemporary and exciting displays.

Aimed to be more personal than a textbook or a website, students had to analyzed one cultural group living in Canada. Grade 10s focused on listening to, recording, and telling the stories of real people. Through interviews and meticulous research, participants fathomed many patterns of immigration.

Presenting on Serbian immigration, Kevin Yu took a challenge and studied a group of people unrelated to him. Kevin shared his reflections,

“For me, the most enjoyable part of this project was learning about an entirely different time period in an entirely different country. Listening to the personal stories of my subjects was especially captivating. Through them, I learned of the sacrifices that must be made in order to immigrate, as well as the benefits that come along with it.”

Perhaps the most valuable experience for many, students had to step out of their comfort zones and talk to real people; asking personal questions and learning about a person’s history. A milestone for young learners, the project illuminated many on how to conduct a proper interview.

After his presentation, Ezaan Mangalji divulges his most valuable experience.

“The most valuable experience of this immigration project was really learning and understanding the hardships that people have gone through to reach a better life.”

To conclude this year’s fair, presenter Kenneth Huang voiced his thoughts on the future of the project.

“I expect next year’s Grade 10 to have even more unique and innovative projects. Maybe poster boards would no longer exist! But at the end of the day, our grade has definitely set some high standards to break.”

A huge thanks goes out to Mr. Chapman, Mr. Jamieson, Ms. Coates, and Mrs. McLean, for guiding  the students through the process. Without the help of the Social Studies faculty, this project would not have been possible.