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Pakistani People in Scotland

A look inside a 1960s classroom and arrivals at a mosque

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This film opens with children working in a school. Several teachers can be seen with the children. Urdu letters are marked on a blackboard as the children watch on. The children study and read from workbooks. Several different classrooms are shown and the class sizes are revealed in panning shots. Then film then moves to show street scenes. We see a group of men heading to a a Mosque, before children are seen accepting fruit from a greengrocer. Some of the greengrocer's remaining fruit is then examined by another man. The display window with its price listings is clearly shown. The film closes with shots of people arriving at the mosque. One man is wearing the Glasgow Corporation Transport Underground uniform. The mosque is shown at its original position in Oxford Street, Glasgow.

Questions & Activities


  • What do you think the children are doing in class?
  • When and why do you think this film was made?
  • Discuss why you think these Pakistani children are in a class all of their own.
  • Do the children look like they are enjoying school?
  • Who do you think made this film?
  • What language is being used in the classroom?
  • What are the children and adults wearing and why do you think this is?
  • What brought Pakistani families to come and live in Scotland?
  • What skills did the people bring with them?
  • What is the association between Pakistan and Britain?
  • What is a mosque?
  • What challenges did the children and their families encounter when they arrived?


Modern Studies / Social Studies: Discuss how immigrant communities maintain their own cultural identity in a foreign country.

Social Studies: If you moved to a foreign country, what new things might you need to learn?

Social Studies: Discuss your own '€˜cultural identity' and contrast it with stereotypes of people from your country. Illustrate with examples.

History / Social Studies: Research the history of the first Pakistani immigrants to Scotland. When did the first Pakistani people arrive in Scotland and what kind of reception did they receive? What employment did they find in Scotland?

English / Literacy: Imagine you are a child coming to live in Scotland from another country. Write a letter back home to your family, describing what it is like living in Scotland.

Social Studies / English: Imagine an alien has landed in your home town. How would you welcome them and make them feel at home?

Media Studies / Social Studies: Capture still images from this film and create a brochure promoting immigrant life in the school.

Moving Image Education: Create a promotional film about your school.

Music / Media Studies: Add different types of music to the archive film. What difference does it make to the meaning of the film?

Modern Languages: Translate the words on the board.

Citizenship: Discuss the different nationalities or cultures in your classroom. Research different pupils' traditions and present to your class.

Media Studies: Compare this film to 'Clearance 68'. Where have Scots gone to live and work? What do they do to establish their traditions and culture?

Geography / History: Find out where Pakistan is and when was it established. What is partition?

Citizenship: Research the Commonwealth and its effect on Pakistan and Great Britain.

Religious Education: Find out what happens at a mosque.

Art and Design: Create a design for a prayer mat in keeping with Pakistani traditions.

Clip Details

Record Id 007-000-002-371-C
Resource Rights Holder Courtesy of the Mario Ford Film Collection
Project Ref 3217
Date c.1960
Genre Documentary
School Subject Social Studies, History, English, Music, Expressive Arts, Religious and Moral Education, Art and Design
Subject Matter Literacy, Citizenship, Immigration, Commonwealth, Urdu, Islam, Education
Who Mario Ford (filmmaker)
Where The Gorbals, Glasgow
Attributes Black and White, Silent
Clip Length 7:09
Film Length 07:09
© Archive film content and stills licensed by National Library of Scotland and other rights holders. Other Website Content Copyright Creative Scotland.
All Rights Reserved.
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