Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Immigration Day

  Immigration Day was a blast. We all had so much fun. Immigration Day was a reinactment of how immigrants would get through Ellis Island and into America. There were six stations to represent this. They were customs, physical exam, mental exam, health exam, eye exam, and legal exam. Once we finished these, we were welcomed  into  America,. It might sound easy, but the exams weren't to easy to get through.

Right when we started the day, we were all on a "ship." We had to have our passports and visas prepared to show as we boarded the ship. The ship was very tight for everyone, except for the first class, of course. They weren't tightly packed on the ship, and they didn't have to go through the stations. They ate cookies Most people had to wait a long time to get off the ship just like the immigrants a hundred years ago.

    Now let us tell you about each station. As soon as you got off the ship, we had to go to the customs station. Here parents asked us general questions about their immigrant's life, such as age, name, place of birth, height, weight, etc. If you got one of these questions wrong you were deported back to the ship. This may not sound difficult, but these parents were all speaking different languages, not English. It was frustrating, just like it was for immigrants who came and didn't speak any English.

 If we passed through customs, then next you went to the physical exam where they tested you to see if you were physically able to work. They found this out by making you do a series of exercises. If you kept up, you were fine and able to move to the next station. If you didn't, you went to the hospital.

The next station was the mental exam. As soon as you got in there, you had to take a test with five questions. They did this to see if you could get creative answers. After that, you had to build an object out of different shape blocks. If the professor didn't see what you built, you were sent to the hospital. The hospital was a room where you would lay down for a few minutes to try and recover and try an exam again. Then the nurse would ask you questions similar to the customs station to make sure you were well. If you got them wrong you either got a lucky chance to lay back down, or you were deported.

The next station was sort of like a double station because it had two stations in the same room. The first one was the eye exam where you look at a letter chart and read out the letters. After that it was eye health. They asked you how you were feeling and made you look through this little tool. They asked you if it was blurry or clear to test how your eyes felt.

The next and final station was the legal exam. In this station, they showed you what it would be like in the shoes of real immigrants (Not speaking the same language). We were asked questions about our immigrant in Spanish. Don't worry; we had it translated to us. After that, we had at last finished the rotations for Ellis Island, and were in America.

Overall this was a great learning experience for all of the kids in the 6th grade. It really helped us to understand what it was like for an immigrant coming to our country a hundred years ago in search of a better life for them and their families.

   ~Reece & Graden

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