Teaching about Palestine at a Bristol secondary school

This month I had the opportunity to participate in a day school about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict for Year 10 students, held at the City Academy in Bristol. The students came from the City Academy and from schools in Devon.  After an historical overview, Dave Mowatt (Quaker musician and community artist)  spoke about his personal pilgrimage to Palestine. He had walked 1000 miles from Bristol to Bethlehem. He told stories and played music.  I then explained the diversity of Jewish perspectives on Israel and introduced my novel Checkpoint.  I set up a role play for the students to learn about the dilemmas faced by Israeli and Palestinian teenagers, using four of the teenage characters in the novel.  In the afternoon, Richard Thurley presented an overview of the Coping with Conflict project which brings together school children from schools in Hebron, Bristol, Nigeria and Devon. The students recorded videos to send to the students in Hebron, giving messages of support and introducing themselves. I learned a lot from the day, especially how different it is to work with 15 year olds compared with adults. Here’s a short interview with Azeem, a student at the school, who came to the workshop: Click here to listen

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