Picture of teacher and interracial children drawing pictures together at tables in school classroom

Twinkl helps educators welcoming pupils arriving from overseas into the new school year

Lizz Banks
Authored by Lizz Banks
Posted: Monday, September 13, 2021 - 12:02

Following increased demand over the summer for educational resources related to the needs of pupils arriving from overseas, educational publisher Twinkl, whose mission is to ‘help those who teach’ has launched a dedicated area on its website ‘International New Arrivals’ - designed to support educators, children and their families. 

For many years, Twinkl has produced specialist resources to support schools and educators in welcoming pupils arriving from overseas. Due to recent global events and international travel beginning to return to pre-lockdown levels, some educators are experiencing an increase in pupils arriving from overseas. Sometimes these include asylum seekers and refugees being rehomed and settled into respective communities. This has resulted in a natural increase in children requiring inclusive integration into the UK education system and classrooms.

The resources provide guidance on how educators can welcome new students and best support those whose first language is not English, whilst working with existing students to ensure the transition is successful. All of the resources have been created by teachers, for teachers. Twinkl’s priority is to ensure that all children are valued and openly welcomed into schools and that teachers are provided with the tools they need to meet the individual needs of their pupils, school, and the wider diverse community. 

The new school year is an important milestone for many children and the days leading up to the start of term can be filled with feelings of apprehensiveness and excitement. However, for international arrivals, including refugees and asylum seekers, these feelings are combined with pressures such as adjusting to a new culture, learning a new language, and settling into a new home. Twinkl’s resources highlight the importance of communicating with existing students and encouraging patience and understanding whilst also making recommendations on how educators can integrate inclusive ways of teaching. Twinkl has created a curated collection of 200 different resources - many free to download and share - ranging from Early Years to Adult Learning, as well as Adult Guidance, activities for children and CPD for school staff.

Kirsty, one of the teachers at Twinkl curating these resources, said "I strongly believe that any adult working with families and young people should be supported to understand their backgrounds, their home situation and their barriers to fulfilling their potential as well as being given the resources to help them have the most positive outcome possible. 

I feel incredibly proud to be part of Twinkl and to create Pastoral content that can be used by educators to help support and prepare young people across the world, so they can be in the best place to learn and fulfil their potential to be a well-rounded human being with a bright future.

The resources I have chosen will help adults support young people who are new to the Country. They will help young people settle positively into their new school, community and Country." 

Twinkl also understands that children and young people are exposed to news stories that may upset them, such as the news coming from Afghanistan, and aims to support parents and educators in acknowledging upsetting news stories with a resource pack designed for children aged 8+. The pack recognises the importance of informing children of current events whilst explaining the news appropriately and handling any feelings that may arise as a result of watching or reading the news. 

Jonathan Seaton, Twinkl CEO, said  “It is our mission at Twinkl to ensure children have access to a quality education and we do this by helping teachers teach. With the recent events in Afghanistan, there has been a natural increase in the need for teacher guidance on integrating refugees and asylum seekers into the UK education system. I am proud of the Twinkl team’s hard work in creating the International Arrivals resource pack to support teachers in their mission.”

Twinkl are continuing to develop these resources and welcome feedback and requests to ensure they are helping those who teach. The resource pack can be viewed here.

Cover photo By LightFieldStudios on Canva

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