Grade 10 History students hosted a conference this week focusing on genocide. We were delighted to welcome The Spanish Institute, representatives from the organisation Facing History and Ourselves and Halcyon parents as our guests.
Igor Pokaz, the Croatian Ambassador to the UK (and Halcyon parent) opened the conference with a fascinating speech about his own thoughts on the broader issues raised by genocide as well as personal experiences and insights into diplomacy and decision making during atrocities. We heard excellent analytical presentations from Rosario, Melina and Daniel on Armenia; Ines, Martina and Noah on Rwanda; Wiebe, Aaron and Isaac on Cambodia and Emma, Sabrina and Aisana on Srebrenica.
Students researched thoroughly and structured their presentations around identity, membership and belonging; historical case studies; judgement, memory and legacy and choosing to participate. This follows the Scope and Sequence of Facing History and Ourselves which allows students to analyse and explain historical events of genocide and oppressive behaviours, and look more deeply at the causes and outcomes to make connections to similar current events.
In addition, four G10 students and one G8 student collaborated to create an interactive exhibition featuring a genocide taking place currently; the Rohingya Genocide.
“We wanted to focus on raising awareness and spreading the word about what is really going on in Myanmar and why this particular group (Rohingyas) are being targeted. The exhibition we created comprised of a collage of artwork made by the victims/survivors, UN and political statements being made around the world, flags representing the countries which have helped these innocent people, news reports from different news stations, articles, photographs of the victims and the violence and a series of notes to the victims of this genocide. We cannot begin to solve the conflicts in the world without people knowing what’s happening in the first place.” – Emma, Rosario, Mia, Aisana and Sabrina.