Students will be motivated to learn during the Holocaust unit.
Students will want to learn more about the Holocaust.
Students will feel sympathy toward the survivors of the Holocaust.
Students will be able to understand and relate to people of the Holocaust.
Students will view the people of the Holocaust as survivors, not victims.
Students will realize that people of the Holocaust have a great deal of courage.
Students will realize that Jewish people did not deserve to have the Holocaust happen to them.
Students will understand that the Holocaust is serious and that certain things, such as swastika symbols and writing numbers on their arms, are unacceptable.
Students will realize the importance of eyewitness accounts and the respect they should be treated with.
Students will begin to think about ethical issues in life.
Students will be grateful that they have a better life than many other people in the world.
Students will realize the dangers of prejudice.
Students will be motivated to prevent another Holocaust.
Students will gain an appreciation for artwork and how it can be used to explain and elicit emotions.
Students will understand how to solve real-world math problems.
Students will be able to state and explain major events during WWII and the Holocaust.
Students will know how many people died in the Holocaust.
Students will be able to state the conditions in the ghettos and Holocaust.
Students will be able to name two differences between Christians and Jews.
Students will be able to recognize the Star of David and a swastika symbol.
Students will know that children were also in the Holocaust.
Students will participate in class discussions about the materials read and the Holocaust.
Students will be able to write about their emotions and feelings.
Students will construct a class timeline with pictures.
Students will be able to locate cities involved in the Holocaust on a map of Europe.
Students will take information from the Holocaust and solve real-world math problems.
Students will write down how many calories they eat per day and relate it to the starvation present in the concentration camps and ghettos.
Students will evaluate artist works about the Holocaust.
Students will create their own artwork about the Holocaust.
Students will pass a culminating test with 80 percent accuracy.
All activities on Week One, Monday and Tuesday, are initiatory activities.
All activities from Week One, Wednesday, through Week Four, Monday are developmental activities.
All activities from Week Four, Tuesday, through Week Four Friday are culminating activities.
Create a large classroom timeline with the students. Certain days will be specified to work on it. At other times, the timeline should be added in on a daily basis.
A large map of Europe should be included on the wall. Day to day, add ghettos, concentration camps, and other important locations.
Have the students keep a daily journal. At the end of each day, give them twenty to thirty minutes to write their thoughts, feelings, and emotions about what has been discussed. At the beginning of the next day, allow any student who wishes to share what they wrote. Encourage the students to make notes and write down feelings in their journals throughout the day, especially if they read or hear something that upsets them or makes them think.
Lesson Plan summaries:
Monday: Open the unit by talking about European Jews, their religion and their lifestyles.
English- Read Jewish Synagogue to the students. Discuss some of the major points of the Jewish religion and their different celebrations.
Social Studies - Compare and contrast Christianity and Judaism, at a very basic level. Use a chart or Venn Diagram to control information.
Art- Make a Tallit by painting an old picture of Jerusalem on a piece of fabric. Look at these websites to evaluate portraits made by people in concentration camps about their Jewish religion. http://www.joi.org/celebrate/simtor/painting.htm & http://www.rynecki.org/simhat.html. Discuss with the students how the first website has very definite forms, while the second is slightly impressionistic. Compare the “composition, similarities, mood, balance, line, symmetry, shape and mass, light, value, color, texture, space, time and motion" expressed by these paintings. (Idea obtained from http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/)
Tuesday: Discuss German economy and the rise of Hitler.
English: Introduce new vocabulary by presenting a list of words pertaining to the Holocaust and have students use dictionaries and other sources to find out what the words mean such as genocide, Holocaust, bigotry, Aryan race, and ethnocentrism.
Film- Watch the first half of a film called “The Lost Children of Berlin.” The teacher will have to sign the film in order for the students to understand because there are no closed captions. Discuss with the students their feelings toward Hitler and the Nazi Youth. How do they think that children could become this violent? Is it completely the children’s fault?
Social Studies- Complete a Timeline of Hitler’s rise to power from 1933-1940. Http://www.historyplace.com/worldwar2/holocaust/timeline.html can be used to accomplish this assignment.
Art- Break the students into groups, and divide the dates among them. Have students choose an important event during their time period and draw a small picture that could be inserted as detail in the timeline.
Math- Explain that many Germans were very poor during this time period. Many were worth less than before, which made it harder to buy necessary items. Give each child a $100 pay check for the week. Then, give them a list of food (milk, bread, eggs, etc.) and the corresponding prices. Have the students deduct the correct amounts, listing everything they purchased. Ask the students how this might make it hard to provide for their family. Ask the students what a mother or father might do under such circumstances. Would they be desperate for the kind of change that Hitler claimed he would provide?
Wednesday: Explain anti-Semitism and prejudice.
Social Studies: As students enter the room, have all the boys sit in the back of the room or on the floor and all the girls sit in desks at the front of the classroom. Pass out candy to all the girls and announce that all the girls have received an “A” for the day because they are females. Then continue to teach the class as if nothing has happened.
Film: Watch the other half of “The Lost Children of Berlin.” Teacher signs the film in order to discuss with the students. Discuss with the students their feelings toward the children, now adults, portrayed in this film.
Art: View Nazi propoganda and anti-semitism, especially that which was directed toward children. (http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/arts/artReich.htm). How are the Jews portrayed? What feelings and emotions do the student’s have after seeing this work? If the students were Nazis, and had never seen a Jew, then how might these pictures slant their views? What kinds of propaganda do we have today?
English: Read Remember Not to Forget: A Memory of the Holocaust to the students. Discuss student perceptions and feelings. Is one group any different than another group? Should they be singled out the way the Jews are?
Thursday: Teach students that the Star of David was a method used to identify the Jews. Also teach that the Nazi soldiers wore an armband with the swastika symbol on it.
Social Studies: Continue the social studies lesson from the prior day by asking the boys how they felt having to sit at the back of the class and not receive an “A” for the day because they were males and then ask the girls how they felt about being favored. Was it fair or not? Ask the children what it's called when someone is not allowed to do something because of something they can’t control, such as their gender. Then explain that Jews were one group of people who were discriminated against because of their ethnic background. If the students wish to see film that shows the Star of David, have them watch "Star of David" online at http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/resource/movies1.htm.
English: Discuss different vocabulary words associated with prejudice, such as racism, sexism, anti-Semitism, etc. Point out that people can be prejudiced against deaf people because they cannot hear. Has this ever happened to them? Have the students write about a time that someone was prejudiced toward them because of their deafness (if a student says this has never happened, ask how they would respond under such a circumstance). Read the book Star of Fear, Star of Hope. Discuss with the students afterward why the Star of David was used. Explain that the star was originally a Jewish symbol, something they were proud of. However, it was later used to identify and then kill Jews. Why would it be important to identify Jews with the star? Do Jewish people really look different than other Europeans? Are there genes/blood different?
Art: Have the students create a mural of the Star of David by learning to draw the star. They can make them in different sizes and colors.
Friday: Discuss the ghetto and the art and possessions that were stolen from the Jews.
Social Studies (Mapping): Show a map of Europe, with ghettos pointed out. Have students help to mark ghettos on European class map. (http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/arts/ART2.HTM#REPRO) Point out the Lodz Ghetto, which is the one discussed in the book.
English: Read My Secret Camera: Life in the Lodz Ghetto. The pictures in the book were taken in secret by a boy living there. Why was it dangerous for him to take such pictures? Why do they think it was important for him to do so? Do pictures show and prove something that words cannot?
Health: Discuss the importance of nutrition and eating well and relate it to life in the ghetto. Discuss the food pyramid. How many of each serving to students need to remain healthy.
Math/Health: Help students calculate how many calories they ate the day before or on a typical day. Have the students ever missed a meal? How did it feel to go hungry? Then, give the students only 300 calories to eat for the day (the amount given to many Jews in the ghettos). With this limited amount, might they change the things they choose to eat? Would they eat healthier food, and less sweets and candy? Would they still be hungry? Remind the students of this daily feeling of hunger that children felt while in the ghetto before they go to lunch. Tell them, also, that there are still children today who are going hungry, even in the United States.
Drama: Read play from website. Have the kids act out the characters. (http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/resource/plays/Korczak.htm) Afterwards, have the students discuss the hardship faced by students in the ghetto. How would students in our class survive if put under similar circumstances? Could they survive?
WEEK TWO Monday: Discuss how the Jews were transported to concentration camps by cattle cars.
Math: Have the students create cattle cars by measuring desks the size a cattle car would have been. Find the area and the perimeter. Afterwards tell students that 100 people were put into that small space.
Social Studies: Have the students watch the video showing people being loaded into cattle cars (http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/resource/movies1.htm choose "Victims being Loaded into Freight Cars" and "Deportation of Dutch Jews").
Social Studies (Mapping): Give students hand out of roads to Auschwitz. (http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/arts/ART2.HTM#REPRO) Place Auschwitz on classroom European map. Point out the other cities located on the map.
Math: Give each student a location on the map (use map given in social studies), and have them calculate how many miles it is from there to Auschwitz. Then, tell each child that their trip took four days, by railroad. Assuming that the train did not stop, how fast would the trains be traveling? Then, tell them that most trains of this time period traveled at about 50 miles per hour. Ask them how long they think the trip would take, if it did not stop.
English: Have the children read Chapter 10 of The Devil's Arithmetic. Have the students discuss why the Jews would agree to get in the boxcars. Did they have any idea what awaited them on the other side? Have the students pictures themselves in the boxcar with the other Jews. How would they feel? What would they think? Have the students sketch a picture to help them think about what it would be like. Then, have them write a short explanation about their experiences.
Tuesday: Discuss the Jews' arrival at different concentration camps, the loss of their clothes, tattoos on their arms, and more.
Film: Watch excerpts from “Schindler’s List,” during the scene where Jews are taken off the train and lined up. Show as much as is acceptable for the student’s level.
Social Studies: Discuss with the students what generally happened when a Jew first arrived at camp. They were usually lined up, separated from their families, their clothes were taken from them, their last possessions. Then, either they were killed or cleaned and given prison uniforms.
English: Read Chapter 11 and 12 of The Devil's Arithmetic. Read the short description that Rivka gives on page 113 (beginning of chapter 14) about the meaning of the number the Nazis gave her. Do the students think this is the meaning that the Nazis intended for this number to have? Why is it important for the Nazis to give the Jews numbers instead of names? What power is there in a name? Give each student a few numbers, and have them write what that number would mean to them if they were at the concentration camp. Remind the students never to write numbers on their arms or any other part of their body. Explain to them that people who survived the Holocaust would be very offended.
Wednesday: Discuss daily life in concentration camps
English: Have the students write a paragraph on one item they would sneak into the concentration camps, if they lived outside of one, if they were able to. Why would this item be important? How could it help the people there survive? Try to get something beyond just food, and truly an inventive item that would help a Jewish person be proud and able to resist the horror of the camp.
Art: Examine arrest and concentration camp life by viewing Josef Nassy’s artwork on the Holocaust by visiting www.ushmm.org/nassy/index.html.
Social Studies: Have students look at pictures of Auschwitz, Dachau, and other concentration camps shown in this website if they were to visit today (http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/resource/gallery/gallery3.htm). You may want to break the students into groups, giving each group a certain location. The students can then share the best pictures with their classmates. Also, let the students examine the "virtual reality" tours available online (http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/resource/VR.htm).
Thursday: Explain what gas chambers were and how they were used.
Art: Look at pictures of gas chambers. Http://www.fmv.ulg.ac.be/schmitz/holocaust.html can be used to view some of these pictures. The teacher might want to view these pictures on her computer and project them on the screen so students do not come across anything objectionable.
Social Studies: Have students examine the crematoriums and showers that people were killed in online (http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/resource/gallery/gallery3.htm). How do the students feel about the showers with the gas? What about the hill that Jews are pushed off of? Simply let students express their gut reactions. Also, have the students examine the virtual reality tours of Auschwitz (http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/resource/VR/AUSCHWIT.HTM, choose Auschwitz gas chamber and Auschwitz "Wall of Death").
English: Allow students to write in their journals immediately after viewing the pictures of the crematoriums and showers. Tell them that it is important for them to express how they are feeling, and not to worry so much about grammar and spelling.
Friday: Have students understand that during these hard times there were people in Germany and other countries who helped hide Jews from being captured and taken away. One Jewish family that was hidden was Anne Frank’s family.
English: Have students read A Picture Book of Anne Frank
Math: Bring in a dollhouse and show how much space is usually contained in an attic. Help students realize what a limited space this is. Have them find the square feet available in the dollhouse and use ratios to convert it to the size of a regular house. Then, tell the students how many square feet the average house has.
Social Studies: Ten Thousand Children: True Stories Told by Children Who Escaped the Holocaust on the Kindertransport. Talk to the student about particular children. Do not plan to read the entire book. Explain that many children escaped the Holocaust, and were not found the way that Anne Frank was. Also talk about how dangerous it was for people, both Jewish and those hiding the Jews, to do what they did. If the people hiding the Jews were found, they would have been killed. Students should understand that many people took strangers into their house at great risk to themselves and their families.
Social Studies (Mapping): Have the students examine maps, and chart the travel that some of the children from the book would have taken. How many miles is it? Discuss what a long journey it is, and how scary it would have been for a young child without family.
Ethics: Ask the students what would have happened if the people across Europe, especially in England and America, had not been willing to take these Jewish children in? Why is it important to help others? Have the students write about one time that someone helped them and made a difference in their life.
Monday: Teach students what was going on during WWII
Social Studies: Continue the timeline into the war. Explain that the United States and many other countries had now joined. Again, have students draw pictures to add to timeline. Examine the propoganda film that Hitler used to explain what the concentration camps were like (http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/resource/movies1.htm choose "Hitler Gives the Jews a City.").
English: Examine headlines of the time period. Do students think that most people knew what was happening in the concentration camps? Have students write their own headlines and short newspaper articles for "breaking" the concentration camp story. If more people knew about what was really happening in the concentration camps, do the students think that it might change the war?
Tuesday: Discuss that Nazi scientist performed experiments on the Jewish people.
Social Studies: Look at some of the pictures of the people and children who were involved in concentration camp experiments (www.fmv.ulg.ac.be/schmitz/holocaust.html – don’t show any that might be too graphic). The teacher might want to view these pictures on her computer and project them on the screen so students do not come across anything objectionable. Ask students how they feel about this. Make sure the students look at these people’s faces.
English: Read and summarize recent newspaper articles that discuss the controversy on finding out IBM supplied German Nazi’s with computers to help document their data on the experiments they performed on the Jews.
Science: Discuss morality issues involved in testing. Can people cause harm to their subjects during testing? Explain the rules of testing that exist today to keep subjects from being harmed.
Ethics: Explain to the students that Nazis killed many people during the experiments. Should we use this data today? Have a class discussion. Does this encourage other groups to perform similarly unethical experiments? Is this a way of saying that what Hitler’s group did was okay? However, should the subject’s lives have been taken in vain?
Wednesday: Learn about deaf people during the Holocaust
Social Studies: Have students read about what happened to deaf people during the Holocaust. Make sure the students understand what sterilization means. Who else in history wanted to sterilize deaf people? (About 17,000 deaf people were sterelized by Hitler.) How does this make the students feel? Also, they need to know that 1,600 deaf people were killed during the Holocaust. Deaf people were one of the first groups that Hitler attacked. Good websites: clerccenter.gallaudet.edu/worldaroundyou/holocaust/guide.html
www.jdcc.org/mayjun/art1.html, www.jdcc.org/1998/sep-oct/holocaust.html, and www.jdcc.org/1998/nov-dec/holocaust.html.
English: Have the students write about how they feel now that they realize that deaf people were also chosen by Hitler. Does it bring the matter "closer to home" for them? Should they be able to understand the suffering of others, even if it doesn't involve their own group?
Thursday: Children in Concentration Camps
Social Studies: Have students watch the online clip about the children rescued form Auschwitz. (http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/resource/movies1.htm, choose "Children of Auschwitz").
Art: Have students read and look at the pictures from I never saw another butterfly: Children’s drawings andpoems from the Terezin Concentration Camp. Have the students draw their own picture as if they were a child at a concentration camp. What do the drawings in their picture symbolize?
English: Have the students write about one of the drawings in the book. What impact did it have on them? Why did they pick it? How does it show the grimness of life at Terezin? Read the book The Children We Remember. Have students discuss the impact the book has on them. The message is simple, yet clear.
Friday: Six million Jews Dead
Math: Read the book How Much is a Million?. Discuss with students the concept of one thousand, one million, and one billion. Have the students calculate if 6 million Jewish people were killed during the Holocaust, and that was 2/3 of the pre-war European Jewish population, then how many Jewish people used to live in Europe?
Social Studies: Relate the number of people killed in the Holocaust (11 million people, 6 million Jews). Help students understand the vastness and tragedy of this number.
English: Re-read the book The Children We Remember. Explain to the students that 1.5 million children died in the Holocaust. Allow the students to discuss their impressions about the Jewish children and the life they had during the war. Show students examples of poetry written by other children about the Holocaust. Help the students construct their own poetry, helping to express their emotions and feelings. (Idea obtained from http://clerccenter.gallaudet.edu/products/perspectives/sep-oct97/brightidea.html, includes sample poetry look at this website for more deaf poetry about the holocaust http://clerccenter.gallaudet.edu/WorldAroundYou/nov-dec97/poetry.html.)
Drama: Students participate in a Candlelight Vigil.
Social Studies: Discuss D-Day and the eventual end of WWII. Finish timeline, add pictures. Discuss how the students think the soldiers might have felt upon finding the Jews in the concentration camps. How would the Jews have felt that the soldiers finally found them?
Tuesday: Discuss liberation of the concentration camps.
Social Studies: Let students see real survivors of the Holocaust telling their story. http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/resource/movies1.htm choose "Auschwitz Nightmare" & "Auschwitz Survivors". Examine the pictures after liberation, shown at this website http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/resource/gallery/gallery1.htm. Discuss with students whether people are really "liberated" after the camps. Do the survivors still carry the burden of living through the Holocaust? Can they ever forget what happened to them?
English: Have the students watch and read survivor testimony (http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/resource/MOVIES.htm).
Wednesday: Discuss people's views today on the Holocaust.
Social Studies: Examine museums and memorials that have been put into place (http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/resource/gallery/gallery5.htm & http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/resource/gallery/gallery6.htm)
English: Have students pick one memorial, and write about its impact. How is it effective? What does it show? Why are memorials important?
Math: Using geometric shapes, have students create their own memorial. Use ratios to determine the life-size version. (Idea obtained from http://fcit.coedu.usf.edu/holocaust/arts/ART/MONUMENT.HTM.)
Thursday: Unit Review & Reflection
English: Allow the students to discuss, talk, and reflect on everything they have learned. Let them finish writing anything they wish to in their journals. Let students who wish to read sections from their journals. What do the students think about the Holocaust now?
Social Studies: Help the students review for the test by playing Jeopardy, or other method of review.
Friday: Assessment Test and Liberation Party.
Test: Give an objective and short-essay format test. A question or two should ask the student's feelings and impressions about the Holocaust.
Liberation Party: Celebrate the liberation of the Jews and the survival of many people from the Holocaust. This should be set-up in a subdued, reflective manner. Make sure that students understand that the Holocaust is horrible event, by the people should be treated as survivors, not victims.
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Adler, D. A. (1993). A picture book of Anne Frank. USA: Holiday House.
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Grossman, M. & Smith, F. D. (2000). My secret camera: Life in the Lodz Ghetto. Hong Kong: Gulliver Books.
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ver der Rol, R. &Verhoeven, R. (1995). Anne Frank: Beyond the diary. USA: Puffin Books.
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Juhas, S. (1997). Learning history: Practicing writing combining social studies and English. Perspectives in Education and Deafness, 16 (1). http://clerccenter.gallaudet.edu/products/perspectives/sep-oct97/brightidea.html
Poetry: Our past and our future. (1997). Perspectives in Education and Deafness. http://clerccenter.gallaudet.edu/WorldAroundYou/nov-dec97/poetry.html
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