This year’s theme at CELC is entitled “Heritage, Ethnicity, and Quest for Freedom”. Students have completed a study of their own family histories, elaborating on aspects in seven different areas: food, language, clothing, family tree, religion, and geography.  The research was compiled into artistically created and illustrated family history scrapbooks, which in addition to photographs, documents, and other visuals also included student’s own creative writing.  

This study expands into learning about the waves of immigration to the United States spanning the past four hundred years.  We take special note to investigate current immigration policy and conditions.  A visit to New York’s Tenement Museum and Ellis Island are some of the field experiences we incorporate into our study.

Students choose countries to study for research papers and projects.  They each research a country from where a large number of people emigrated to the U.S., focusing primarily on the “push/pull” factors involved.  They complete the writing of a full research paper, including outlining, note taking, compiling notes into a rough draft, and ultimately a final published piece. 

Students bring their research to a new level as they work toward the “Living History” Student Exhibition to take place in June.  Students create a persona from the country they have studied, design and build a “living museum” display, dress in authentic costume, and share this story in character!

Visitors are welcome to attend and meet our “immigrants”, from countries including China, Japan, Cambodia, Nigeria, Italy, Germany, Ireland, Guatemala, Mexico, and Cuba.  Please support this student work!

Interactive displays will be shared Friday, 7 June between 12:30 – 4:30 p.m. at the Soundview Family YMCA, 628 East Main Street, Branford, CT. 

We hope you will join us!

Contact [email protected] or 203.433.4658 for more information. 

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