Lesson plans for ages 12-14 in History: The Rwandan Crisis 1994
Teaching Tools, 2 March 2007
1.2 million Rwandans sought safety and shelter in Zaire.
LESSONS 1 and 2: How did the Rwandan crisis start?
- A large map of Africa should be installed where all the students can see it clearly.
- Class sets of "Great Lakes Chronology", Refugees, no, 110 (Geneva, UNHCR, 1997), p. 8.
To test entry behaviour, the students are asked the following questions:
- Where is Rwanda? (a country in Central Africa)
- Why was Rwanda in the news in the 1990s? (e.g. there had been fighting between the different people who live there)
- Who are the Hutus and Tutsis? (the two main groups of people who live in Rwanda)
For the first part of the lesson, students receive a copy of the Activity Sheet: Rwanda and its neighbours, and commence to fill in the sheet during the class discussion.
Tasks for the Activity Sheet
- Write in the names of the countries of the Great Lakes Region:
- Country 1: Rwanda
- Country 2: Burundi
- Country 3: The Democratic Republic of Congo (formerly Zaire)
- Country 4: Tanzania
- Country 5: Uganda
- Write within each country, where possible, its population composition:
- Rwanda: 85% Hutus, 14% Tutsis, 1% Twa (pygmies)
The main ethnic groups are the Kikongo, Luba, Mongo, ethnic Rwandans and Bwaka.
Tanzania: 120 or so ethnic groups.
Uganda: Over 20 ethnic groups
Reading in class: Students spend class time reading "Great Lakes Chronology", Refugees, no, 110 (Geneva, UNHCR, 1997), p. 8 and The State of the World's Refugees: In Search of Solutions, (Oxford, OUP, 1995), p. 32-33.
The following questions could be answered by students during their reading time, or afterwards:
- Who were the Interahamwe?
- What is genocide?
- What event precipitated the genocide of over 800,000 Tutsis by the Interahamwe?
- The Rwandan Patriotic Front, who subsequently entered Rwanda and formed a new government is dominated by which ethnic group?
- Who fled to Tanzania and Zaire in great numbers in fear of revenge attacks from the RPF?
- Who else fled to the refugee camps besides women and children?