17 Important Classes for Educating the Holocaust


Usually crucial subjects we train are a few of the most difficult and tough to debate. Due to this, educating the Holocaust to college students of any grade stage is a fancy process. It is usually a vitally essential one.

Above all, we need to be certain we offer college students with probably the most correct and related info. However we additionally should acknowledge the age stage of the scholars we train. You will need to open college students’ eyes to the truth of what was misplaced whereas sustaining respect for the lived experiences of so many people. Subsequently, it’s essential that we mannequin this respect for our college students. Lastly, we need to present our college students how the occasions of the Holocaust are nonetheless so related at the moment.

America Holocaust Memorial Museum is devoted to supporting educators who undertake this essential work. The museum’s main educators and historians have used their famend assortment of major sources to create traditionally correct, related sources that help lecturers as they encourage college students to suppose critically in regards to the previous and their position on this planet at the moment. If you will be educating in regards to the Holocaust, these sources will make sure you really feel ready and assured in doing so.

These ready-to-use sources have been grouped collectively to assist lecturers in a number of methods. First, they’ll assist lecturers simply starting to plan a unit on the Holocaust. Moreover, they’ll assist lecturers who’ve a restricted period of time to show this essential topic.

  • Pointers for Educating Concerning the Holocaust – Educating the Holocaust requires a excessive stage of sensitivity and eager consciousness of the complexity of the subject material. This useful resource can present useful framing.
  • Introduction to the Holocaust – This can be a complete one-day lesson plan for lecturers who need to introduce their college students to the subject however would not have time of their schedules for a whole unit.
  • Overview of the Holocaust – For lecturers with a small window for a devoted unit, this hyperlink offers lesson plans for each a two-day and four-day unit.
  • Construct a Holocaust Unit – Discover further planning on your classes with this easy-to-follow information.

These lesson plans introduce key ideas and historic content material to college students. The teachings make the most of major supply supplies from the USA Holocaust Memorial Museum’s collections.

Image of Black teacher's hands holding a tablet with Holocaust information on it
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
  • The Path to Nazi Genocide Documentary – This 38-minute movie offers an outline of how the Nazis got here to energy in Germany and perpetrated the Holocaust. It does include tough imagery and subject material, so that you’ll need to preview it first to ensure it’s applicable on your grade stage. The accompanying lesson plan additionally features a follow-along worksheet that may assist with dialogue and reflection after watching.
  • Timeline Exercise – College students create a multi-layered wall timeline that encourages important fascinated with the connection between Nazi coverage, World Warfare II, historic occasions, and particular person experiences in the course of the Holocaust. Vital-thinking questions are included to help post-activity discussions. Out there in English and Spanish. Free, printed copies of timeline exercise playing cards can be shipped to educators. Request a printed model.
  • Educating Supplies by Subject – A multi-faceted useful resource for educators with an already current unit who want to embrace extra genuine, major sources. Subjects embrace Individuals’ response to the Holocaust, how propaganda was utilized by the Nazis in the course of the Holocaust, and extra.

Many lecturers use novels or memoirs as a window into this matter for college students. These sources help lesson plans exploring Elie Wiesel’s memoir, Night time, Anne Frank’s Diary of a Younger Woman, and others.

Photograph of Anne Frank in 1942
Diarist Anne Frank, 1942. Public area
  • Exploring Night time as Literature: Bearing Witness to Historical past – This lesson offers a fuller historic context for the occasions described in Wiesel’s writing. Moreover, it asks college students to look at the aim of a memoir and the idea of bearing witness. Lastly, distinctive sources enable college students to be taught in regards to the later life and legacy of Elie Wiesel.
  • Exploring Anne Frank’s Diary – On this lesson, college students look at Anne Frank’s diary as each a historic and a intentionally created literary textual content. Doing so will construct understanding about how the Holocaust affected the lives of the Frank household.
  • Exploring Holocaust-Period Diaries – Appropriate for older college students who’ve already learn Diary of a Younger Woman or as a companion to a unit learning Anne Frank, this lesson appears to be like at different diaries written throughout the identical time interval. The first supply materials consists of precise images of the diaries in addition to PDF variations for simpler studying.

4. Inspecting Antisemitism and Racism

These sources discover the historical past of antisemitism, the hazards it poses at the moment, and the historical past behind Nazi symbols and phrases.

Black and white photograph of a woman sitting on a bench with the words
A girl who’s concealing her face sits on a park bench marked “Just for Jews.” Austria, ca. March 1938, through U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum
  • Historical past of Antisemitism and the Holocaust – College students look at the position of antisemitism within the Holocaust to raised perceive the connection between hate speech and violence. Studying in regards to the origins of hatred and prejudice encourages college students to suppose critically about antisemitism at the moment.
  • Understanding Nazi Symbols – This lesson offers a mannequin for lecturers to make use of when analyzing the origins of symbols from Nazi Germany in addition to how these symbols are used at the moment.
  • Nazi Racism – These sources present an outline for understanding racism typically and Nazi racial antisemitism specifically.

These movies and accompanying lesson plans have been produced by museum historians and educators to be used in center and highschool school rooms to help correct and efficient educating in regards to the Holocaust.

  • European Antisemitism From Its Origins to the Holocaust – This 13-minute movie introduces the historical past of antisemitism from its origins via the mid-Twentieth century. It additionally addresses questions on why Jews have been focused all through historical past and the way antisemitism provided fertile floor to the Nazis.
  • One Survivor Remembers – Produced by HBO, this movie paperwork Gerda Weissmann’s experiences as a 14-year-old in the course of the Holocaust.
  • Behind Each Identify – Based mostly on letters and diaries, these animated quick movies doc 5 distinctive, firsthand accounts of the Holocaust.

These supplies look at the motives, pressures, and fears that formed Individuals’ responses to Nazism, battle, and genocide. Additionally they present perception into how a lot info was accessible to the American public and the U.S. authorities about what was taking place throughout this time.

Photograph of Jewish refugee children wave at the Statue of Liberty as the SS President Harding Steams into New York harbor in 1939.
Jewish refugee kids wave on the Statue of Liberty because the SS President Harding Steams into New York harbor in 1939. USHMM, courtesy of Anita Willens
  • Historical past Unfolded: U.S. Newspapers and the Holocaust – This interactive lesson guides college students via discovering what details about the Holocaust was accessible in their very own neighborhood newspapers utilizing on-line or in-person analysis.
  • Exploring the net exhibition – College students typically need to know what Individuals knew and what they did in the course of the lead-up to the battle and in the course of the Holocaust. This on-line exhibition guides them via this timeframe and poses questions for them to consider critically and focus on as a category.
  • Challenges of Escape, 1938–1941 – Whereas many college students could have background information in regards to the Holocaust in Europe, this lesson will concentrate on the German Jews who tried to to migrate from Nazi Germany and the advanced components that affected their efforts to come back to the USA.
Photograph of Holocaust survivor and Museum volunteer Irene Weiss as a girl, circa 1930-1941
Holocaust survivor and museum volunteer Irene Weiss as a woman, circa 1930-1941 (courtesy of Irene Fogel Weiss), and at the moment

This lesson asks college students to look at testimonies of Holocaust survivors through quite a lot of mediums (movies, diaries, transcripts, and audio). Included actions discover the aim of oral histories, how testimonies personalize the historical past and range from different major sources, and the way we must always critically consider them as historic sources. This lesson is obtainable in Spanish, together with a number of survivor testimony clips.

The interactive on-line classes are appropriate with studying administration programs or internet browsers for college students to finish individually or as a category. Good for in-person or at-home studying.

  • Pre-World Warfare II Jewish Life – In an effort to higher perceive what Jewish cultural and communal life was like in Europe earlier than World Warfare II, college students will discover the museum’s digital archive collections, select pictures of pre-war Jewish life in Europe, and analyze them and the city(s) the place the images have been taken.
  • Rescue and Survival in Hiding – Utilizing quick movies about artifacts within the USHMM’s assortment, college students will be taught in regards to the experiences of youngsters and households who survived in hiding in the course of the Holocaust.
  • Resistance In the course of the Holocaust – This exercise introduces the assorted types of resistance in the course of the Holocaust and explores examples from 1933 to 1945.

Designed to help correct, significant educating in regards to the Holocaust, the Belfer Nationwide Convention for Educators is the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum’s flagship occasion for secondary-school educators and invitations contributors to interact with present historic analysis and educational finest practices.

Photograph of a visitor looks at photos of daily life before the Holocaust in the Museum's main exhibition.
A customer appears to be like at images of day by day life earlier than the Holocaust within the museum’s principal exhibition. The Yaffa Eliach Shtetl Assortment, US Holocaust Memorial Museum
  • On-Demand Skilled Studying Movies – Quick movies offering steering on the best way to train in regards to the Holocaust.
    • Historic Connections – This video covers how lecturers may also help their college students make applicable connections between the previous and current.
    • Classroom-Prepared Classes – This video walks lecturers via key sources, a bibliography, classes for distance studying, foundational classes, and one-day and multi-day overviews/introductions to the Holocaust.
    • Timeline Lesson: Dialogue of a lesson that helps college students contextualize what was occurring traditionally via learning legal guidelines, occasions, and particular person tales. College students create a multi-layered wall timeline that encourages important fascinated with the connection between Nazi coverage, World Warfare II, historic occasions, and particular person experiences in the course of the Holocaust. Vital considering questions are included to help post-activity discussions. Out there in English and Spanish. Free, printed copies of timeline exercise playing cards can be shipped to educators. Request a printed model.
    • Artwork, Reminiscence, and Genuine Evaluation – Academics typically pair artwork assignments with Holocaust classes as a result of they are often uncertain the best way to assess pupil studying. Study frameworks for artwork assignments that guarantee respect for the victims and survivors whereas avoiding unintentionally glorifying Nazi imagery.

The USHMM affords educators a number of sources for his or her classes. Academics can order onerous copies of those sources or obtain them. Among the supplies accessible embrace:

  • Path to Nazi Genocide DVD
  • Days of Remembrance DVD
  • Timeline Exercise
  • Poster Units

This assortment of generally requested questions was developed with educators in thoughts. It would assist you tackle pupil questions on historic content material.

Screenshot of the Holocaust Encyclopedia page from the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

The museum’s Holocaust Encyclopedia offers lots of of articles about how and why the Holocaust occurred. It consists of entry to digitized collections, important considering and dialogue questions, lesson plans, oral histories, animated maps, artifact and doc photographs, historic movie clips, ID playing cards, pictures, and audio clips. Moreover, there are over 950 articles in English and lots of of different articles provided in 19 languages, together with Spanish, Arabic, Farsi, Russian, and Hindi.

The Museum’s Collections doc the destiny of Holocaust victims, survivors, rescuers, liberators, and others via artifacts, paperwork, images, movies, books, private tales, and extra. Additionally, you will discover collections curated by theme and sort. Study extra about Educating With Main Sources utilizing this on-demand skilled studying video.

These lesson plans discover how propaganda and hate speech have been utilized by the Nazis in the course of the Holocaust. Supplies encourage important evaluation of messages and the consequences of propaganda on individuals and society each then and now.

Two examples of German propaganda during World War II
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Present of Helmut Eschwege/ Hohlwein, Wikipedia
  • Exploring Nazi Propaganda – This lesson offers alternatives for college students to work together with the net exhibition “State of Deception” to be taught in regards to the methods propaganda was utilized by the Nazis in the course of the Holocaust.
  • Critically Analyzing Propaganda – Persevering with with evaluation of how the Nazis used propaganda in the course of the Holocaust, this lesson furthers important fascinated with how timeless methods of propaganda are nonetheless used at the moment in several contexts.
  • Analyzing Memes – College students look at fashionable memes, then learn to unpack the sources and that means behind the social media they expertise on daily basis.

This bibliography offers an intensive checklist of sources applicable for the secondary faculty stage and consists of diaries, memoirs, secondary sources, literature, graphic novels, and movies. As well as, grade and Lexile ranges are included each time doable.

16. Supplies in Spanish

The USHMM offers foundational supplies in Spanish similar to:

Photograph of a white, female teacher teaching a lesson on the Holocaust

Educating the Holocaust may be daunting. Due to this, the USA Holocaust Memorial Museum is devoted to offering educators with sources, steering, and help. To help educators, the museum solutions particular person questions you may need about sources and educational methods.

17 Essential Lessons for Teaching the Holocaust