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Immigrants and Refugees

The USA has always been regarded as the land of promise - as a beacon for the persecuted, oppressed and poor. Americans thus proudly present themselves as a nation of immigrants.
Immigrants. Photo.
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Immigrants and Refugees


Each year millions of new immigrants arrive, legally and illegally. The illegal immigration is estimated to be bigger than the legal immigration.

What brings all these people to the USA? What are their dreams? What do they want? Listen to these interviews with a Mexican immigrant and a Sudanese refugee.

Tasks and Activities


  1. Why do most immigrants come to the USA?
  2. What is the Sudanese refugee's story?
  3. What made the Mexican immigrant move to the USA?
  4. What are some of the unrealistic ideas people have about the USA?
  5. What job expectations do some immigrants have?
  6. How did the Mexican immigrant feel when she finally arrived in the USA?
  7. The Mexican immigrant felt that she "lost" her mother, after they came to the USA. Why?
  8. Why is the life of the Sudanese woman so hard in the USA?
  9. How much do immigrant families get per month?
  10. How does the Sudanese refugee feel about her African culture?


  1. What is the difference between immigrants and refugees?
  2. Do you agree that immigrant groups and refugees bring new vitality and new ideas to Western societies like the USA?
  3. What are some of the negative and positive aspects of immigration?
  4. In what ways does immigration stimulate the US economy, and in what ways do you think it may have a negative impact?
  5. How should the USA respond to illegal immigration?


  1. Study this map and find out which areas get most new foreign residents. Try to explain the variations.
  2. What is an LPR?

Immigration map


Imagine you are a new immigrant to the USA. Write your story.

CC BY-SASkrevet av Knut Inge Skifjeld.
Sist faglig oppdatert 22.01.2019