March: Kurdish History Month. 

I am a Kurdish mother to two children. 

In my ideal world, all of March my two children will go to school. No, it will not be a holiday. March is a holy month on the Kurdish calendar, how dare us not use it in favour of our children. 

Instead, it will be Kurdish History Month. My son’s uniform for March will be a white shirt and a shrwal, my daughter will go in a simple Jli Kurdi – all the students will wear the same colour. They will put away all their books, and the teachers will design a special program for 14 days (taking out the weekends) until the 20th of March. 

And this will be their curriculum.

March 1 – 3

  • Learn about Mustafa Barzani, Salahaddin Ayubi, Mam Jalal etc. students select one individual to do a presentation on

March 6 – 7

  • What is the Kurdish uprising, watch documentaries about the uprising, why did Kurds uprise? 
  • Who was Saddam Hussein to the Kurds

March 8 – 10 

  • Famous Kurdish women, who were they and what they did
  • Create posters on different Kurdish women 
  • The role of Kurdish mothers during the uprising – how did they live, what did they do, how did they support the Peshmerga 
  • I have a friend, A.A., her mother’s story is an incredible one, how she got married, went to the mountains, and her role at home with the Peshmerga who were fighting. How powerful it would be if she spoke to children in the classroom, and they asked her questions.
  • Appreciation cards and letters written to their favourite Kurdish woman, it can be their teacher, neighbour, sister or mother. 

March 13– 14

  • Why do we speak different Kurdish dialects, how Kurds are still Kurds yet very different sometimes, learn words and songs in different Kurdish dialects
  • Why are we different, but still one?
  • Introduction to different cities of Kurdistan and different parts of Kurdistan 
  • Knowing the meaning and colours of the Kurdish flag, 

March 15 – 17 

  • The Anfal campaign and what it was
  • Students see documentaries and videos of Anfal victims, they listen to stories from Peshmerga, parents come to the class and talk about the stories of their families,
  • Students do presentations on how the Anfal campaign affected someone they know – if not, then, what they think the impact was on one of the videos they saw, or one of the people who came to class 
  • Field visit to Barzan, Halabja, or other symbolic places in their own city which allows them to reflect on martyrs of Kurdistan 
  • Understand, explain and present how the ethnic cleansing happened, why it happened and how it impacted different people

March 20

  • School party to end Kurdish History Month 
  • School lighting the Newroz fire
  • What is the Newroz fire, and why it is symbolic
  • Sing the Ayraqib — not all private schools in Erbil teach the Ayraqib song

March 21 – 26 Official Newroz Holiday 

In between and through the dates schools can also:

  • Design your own jli kurdi – a poster
  • Make a Kurdish flag in a creative way 
  • Making traditional Kurdish food
  • Art, design and colours that Kurds use, where do they originate from
  • Chai and Kulicha family day at school
  • Picnic at school: On this day we focus on environmental awareness and cleaning up after picnics when visiting nature in Kurdistan  
  • Through the entire month read a book that tells a story of a Kurd, the children can meet the author if possible 
  • Musical performance day – halparke, saz and Kurdish performances, students can even present their role plays of a Kurdish story 

So many ideas. But instead, we decide to close the school doors. 

Lots of love from

My Nest in Kurdistan



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