Lesson Plans

Lesson plans based on Shaun Tan’s graphic novel ‘The Arrival’

The Arrival is a migrant story told as a series of wordless images that might seem to come from a long forgotten time. A man leaves his wife and child in an impoverished town, seeking better prospects in an unknown country on the other side of a vast ocean. He eventually finds himself in a bewildering city of foreign customs, peculiar animals, curious floating objects and indecipherable languages. With nothing more than a suitcase and a handful of currency, the immigrant must find a place to live, food to eat and some kind of gainful employment. He is helped along the way by sympathetic strangers, each carrying their own unspoken history: stories of struggle and survival in a world of incomprehensible violence, upheaval and hope.”

– Shaun Tan

Different Takes on The Arrival: Empowering Immigrant Students through Storytelling

I got first introduced to Shaun Tan’s work in the 2016 spring term by fellow students during the process of planning a lesson for the class EDUC 546- Sociolinguistics by Professor Nelson Flores. For the class’s Sociolinguistics in Education project, my classmates Anne Pyzocha, Sophie Degât, Sydney Negus and I decided to design a number of ESL lesson plans targeted towards immigrant populations in Philadelphia. We used the Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians as a resource for information about different immigrant communities in the city and as a possible institution where the designed lessons could be put into practice.

You can find our detailed lesson plan here.

Adaptation of The Arrival through Spoken Word Poetry

During the 2016 fall term I got another chance to use Shaun Tan’s graphic novel The Arrival for my lesson design. Together with my friend and fellow student Anne Pyzocha I designed a one hour lesson for the class EDUC 539 – Teaching Performing Arts for Cross-Cultural Education taught by Suzana Berger. For this lesson, we decided to have our students give voices to the characters in the novel through spoken word poetry.

You can find our detailed lesson plan here.