- Step-by-step procedures
- Estimated completion time
- Resources labeled by icons direct teachers to the piece of content named in the procedures
- Print-ready pages as indicated by are available as PDFs for download
In honor of Universal Pictures’ rerelease of Schindler’s List, Echoes & Reflections has created a short, classroom-ready Companion Resource, that will help educators to provide important historical background and context to the film, as well as explore powerful true stories of rescue, survival, and resilience with their students.
Additionally, the following videos, recorded at Yad Vashem, feature Schindler survivors who speak of the impact Oskar Schindler had on their lives.
EVA LAVI TESTIMONY
NAHUM & GENIA MANOR
The posters feature the powerful words and experiences of Holocaust survivor and memoirist Elie Wiesel, Holocaust survivor Kurt Messerschmidt, and Anne Frank rescuer, Miep Gies. Each poster promotes meaningful conversation and reflection in the classroom, whether in person or in a virtual setting, and inspires students with powerful human stories of the Holocaust that can continue to guide agency and action as a result of studying this topic.
To support you in these efforts, we have also compiled several suggested classroom activities from teachers in our network that may be of use and interest.
Please fill out the form below to access and download your PDF posters.
USC Shoah Foundation’s first podcast, We Share The Same Sky, seeks to brings the past into present through a granddaughter’s decade-long journey to retrace her grandmother’s story of survival. We Share The Same Sky tells the two stories of these women—the grandmother, Hana, a refugee who remained one step ahead of the Nazis at every turn, and the granddaughter, Rachael, on a search to retrace her grandmother’s history.
In order to enhance its classroom use, USC Shoah Foundation and Echoes & Reflections have created a Companion Educational Resource to support teachers as they introduce the podcast to their students. This document provides essential questions for students, as well as additional resources and content to help build context and framing for students’ understanding of the historical events addressed in the podcast.
Access to the podcast, as well as additional supporting materials—including IWitness student activities, academic standards alignment, and general strategies for teaching with podcasts—can all be found at the We Share The Same Sky page in IWitness.
Note: Due to the subject nature, the podcast is appropriate for older students, grades 10-12. As always, teachers should review the content fully in advance to determine its appropriateness for their student population.
- ALFRED GOTTSCHALK, JEWISH SURVIVOR
Below is information to keep in mind when teaching the content in this unit. This material is intended to help teachers consider the complexities of teaching about anti-Jewish policy and the rise of the Nazi Party and to deliver accurate and sensitive instruction.
The purpose of this unit is for students to learn about the Weimar Republic’s fragile democracy between 1918 and 1933 and to examine historical events that allowed for the complete breakdown of democracy in Germany between 1933 and 1939, which led to the unfolding of anti-Jewish policies. Students will also investigate primary source materials in order to understand how legislation, terror, and propaganda isolated German Jewry from German society. Students also have an opportunity to consider the role and responsibility of the individual in interrupting hate and the escalation of violence.
ESTIMATED COMPLETION TIME
Weimar Republic and Rise of the Nazi Party
|1||Begin this lesson by having students think about the word “democracy.” Using a web format, chart student responses to the sentence stem “Democracy is…” on the board or on chart paper.|
|2||Introduce the class to [L]Alfred Caro[/L] and [L]Frank Shurman[/L]; have students watch their clips of testimony; and follow with a discussion using the questions below.|
|3||Distribute The Weimar Republic and the Rise of the Nazi Party handout. After reading the text together, have a discussion using some or all of the following questions:|
The Weimar Republic and the Rise of the Nazi Party View More »
|4||Show students the maps of Europe before and after 1919 and the Treaty of Versailles and have them identify how the borders of Europe changed after 1919. Have students refer back to the text and summarize the provisions of the Treaty of Versailles in addition to the change in borders.|
EUROPE BEFORE 1919 AND THE TREATY OF VERSAILLES
EUROPE AFTER 1919 AND THE TREATY OF VERSAILLES
ESTIMATED COMPLETION TIME
Anti-Jewish Policy in 1930s Germany
|1||Begin this lesson by introducing students to [L]Julia Lentini[/L], [L]Herman Cohn[/L], and [L]Margaret Lambert[/L]. After showing their clips of testimony, have a discussion using the following questions:|
|2||Provide each student with a copy of the activity What Rights Are Most Important to Me? Have students take a few minutes to rank the choices in order of importance from 1 (most important) to 9 (least important).|
What Rights Are Most Important to Me? View More »
|3||Divide the class into small groups and have students share how they ranked the rights on the handout and the rationale behind their decisions. [Optional: Have groups come to consensus on how the choices should be ranked. If it is not possible for group members to come to consensus, have them analyze why consensus is not possible.]|
|4||Distribute the Nazi Germany and Anti-Jewish Policy handout. Explain to students that this is a timeline of official Nazi actions against the Jews in Germany beginning in 1933 when Adolf Hitler and the Nazi Party gained control of Germany. After students have reviewed the timeline of anti-Jewish policy, discuss the following questions:|
Nazi Germany and Anti-Jewish Policy View More »
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|5||After introducing students to [L]Esther Clifford[/L], show her clip of testimony and then discuss the following questions:|
Info Quest: Kristallnacht
|6||Show students Frankfurt Am Main Germany, The Horowitz Synagogue, Kristallnacht, November 1938. Ask them to describe what they see in the photograph. Follow by asking students to consider the following:|
FRANKFURT AM MAIN, GERMANY, THE HOROWITZ SYNAGOGUE, KRISTALLNACHT, NOVEMBER 1938
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|7||Provide students with background information on the concentration camps established beginning in the 1930s by having them read the Concentration Camps handout. Ask students to consider the following questions:|
Concentration Camps View More »
|8||Conclude this lesson by having students summarize how Germany had changed for Jews and for Germans in the six-year period from 1933 to 1939.|
ESTIMATED COMPLETION TIME
A Model for the Escalation of Hate
|1||To begin this lesson, introduce students to [L]Esther Clifford[/L], [L]Alfred Gottschalk[/L], and [L]Ellen Brandt[/L] and show their testimonies. Follow with a discussion using the questions below.|
|2||Show students the Pyramid of Hate handout. Review each part of the pyramid by having students refer to the Glossary for the definition of each term used and by presenting examples for each section (e.g., scapegoating–blaming immigrants for lack of jobs).|
Pyramid of Hate View More »
|3||After reviewing the model, have students consider how prejudiced attitudes might, if left unchecked, eventually lead to violence and encourage them to share examples that illustrate the progression through each part of the pyramid.|
|4||Divide the class into groups of four or five students. Provide each group with a piece of chart paper, markers, and sticky notes. Have each group select a recorder. Instruct the recorder to draw a large pyramid on the chart paper and divide it into the four sections, labeling each section.|
|5||Have group members work together to identify examples for each part of the pyramid from the visual history testimony that they have watched and from the Nazi Germany and Anti-Jewish Policy handout, write them on the sticky notes, and affix them to the chart paper (e.g., Jews dismissed from civil service would be placed on the “Discrimination” section). Not all events need be used, but students should be encouraged to have at least four examples for each category. Students may not agree on the placement of events and should be encouraged to share their thought processes in arriving at consensus.|
Nazi Germany and Anti-Jewish Policy View More »
|6||After completing the pyramids, have groups post them around the room. Review the placement of events as a whole group, discussing how students determined what each action exemplified. After reviewing the pyramids, have a discussion using some or all of the following questions:|
|7||Raise the issue of personal responsibility by introducing the following quotation by Reverend Martin Niemöeller, a German Protestant minister who survived Sachsenhausen and Dachau concentration camps where he was sent because of his outspoken criticism of the Nazi government in Germany.|
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“In Germany, the Nazis came for the Communists, and I didn’t speak up because I was not a Communist. Then they came for the Jews and I didn’t speak up because I was not a Jew. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn’t speak up because I was not a trade unionist. Then they came for the Catholics, and I didn’t speak up because I was a Protestant. Then they came for me… and by that time there was no one left to speak up.”
|8||Ask students to consider the role of the individual in the events that surround him or her, using Reverend Niemöeller’s words as a catalyst for the discussion.|
The questions below, used in class or as homework, prompt students to reflect on what they are learning and its meaning in their own lives and in society.
These queries are excellent for journaling, allowing students to create their own primary source material. Keep in mind, the sensitive and emotional nature of the topics may preclude teacher evaluation. If journaling is used as an assessment tool, assure students that they will not be evaluated negatively for expressing opinions that may be different from others in class or from the teacher’s.
The additional activities and projects listed below can be integrated directly into the lessons in this unit or can be used to extend lessons once they have been completed. The topics lend themselves to students’ continued study of the Holocaust as well as opportunities for students to make meaningful connections to other people and events, including relevant contemporary issues. These activities may include instructional strategies and techniques and/or address academic standards in addition to those that were identified for the unit.
|1||Visit IWitness (iwitness.usc.edu) for testimonies, resources, and activities to help students learn more about the topics covered in this unit, including the Nuremberg Laws, the Kristallnacht Pogrom, and life in 1930s Germany.|
|2||After conducting research on another group targeted by the Nazis (e.g., homosexuals, Sinti- Roma, Jehovah’s Witnesses, people with disabilities, political dissidents), have students prepare a written, oral, or multimedia report on their findings. Students should consult multiple sources of information presented in diverse formats and media as part of their research.|
|3||Share Reverend Martin Niemöeller’s quotation included in the A Model for the Escalation of Hate lesson or the poem form included here. Review the historical context for the quotation. Have students think about events taking place in their time and update the text to reflect their feelings about a particular situation taking place in their school, community, country, or in the world at large. Have students post their work on the class wiki, blog, or website and invite discussion on the topics raised.|
THEY CAME FOR View More »
|4||Have students use online resources to research and prepare a graphic that shows the immigration of German and Austrian Jews from 1933–1939. The graphic might include the number of Jews who relocated to Israel (then known as Palestine), the United States, Canada, Latin American counties, Shanghai, Spain, and other areas of Europe; quota systems that were in place in various countries; what was needed to emigrate from Germany and Austria, etc. Students should be prepared to explain their findings.|
|5||Dr. Seuss, born Theodor Seuss Geisel, drew nearly 400 political cartoons for the New York daily newspaper PM between January 1941 and January 1943. In the cartoons, he expressed his support for the war against Hitler while criticizing the slow-to-act American political bureaucracy and organizations/politicians that were opposed to the war. Have students select one or more of these political cartoons, which can be found online or in Dr. Seuss Goes to War (New Press, 2001) and determine the artist’s point of view or purpose in creating the cartoon; analyze both the message and the medium; and comment on the overall effectiveness of the cartoon.|
|6||Several survivors in this unit describe the verbal and physical harassment they suffered at the hands of the Hitlerjugend (Hitler Youth). To help students better understand the history and purpose of the Hitler Youth, provide an opportunity for them to gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources about this organization and present their findings in a form of their choice (written, oral, visual). Encourage students to explore Susan Campbell Baroletti’s Hitler Youth: Growing Up in Hitler’s Shadow (Scholastic, 2005) for diaries, letters, oral histories, and historical photos from youth who followed the Nazi Party.|