Before constructing the lesson

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Name of Group

Prediction of Ideology Used

Conclusion on Ideology Used

Soviet POWs


Jehovah’s Witnesses




  1. (Two Minutes) Explain to students their task in each group, which is to analyze the documents they have in their packets and determine what made them targets of the Nazis. Each group will receive one victim packet. In that packet are a maximum of two artifacts about the same victim group, the same group they were assigned to write about in their warm-up activity. Have students choose or assign roles to play in the groups and then use the timer to pace them to twenty minutes for their analysis.

Suggested roles within the group:

-Speaker: reports the group’s conclusions

-Reader: reads any captions or documents on the evidence to the group

-Timekeeper and Language Expert: keeps track of the time and makes sure

members of the group are using and defining precise language by

referring them to the glossary on back of the journal sheet

-Synthesizer/Summarizer: keeps group focused by summarizing

conclusions that all members of the group write on their handout

Instruct students to begin with the piece labeled “context” and answer the one question

about it on the handout. Students need to then analyze one piece of evidence using the

questions on the Victims of Nazi Ideology handout for the first piece of evidence. Tell

students to focus on the one piece of evidence, and only if they have time to analyze the

second piece of evidence. While they are analyzing their evidence, instruct them to use a

dry-erase marker to circle the part of the evidence that they think points the most

definitively points to the aspect of Nazi ideology they think made the victim group targets

of the Nazis.

  1. (15 Minutes) Students will explore the documents they are given in their packets by using artifact contemplation sheets and graphic organizers to compile their data. Students will be working to discover why a particular victim group was targeted by the Nazis by finding similar characteristics and then deciding which category of Nazi Ideology they fall under of the following:

      1. Protect the racial health of the German volk from contagion. (“Racial” enemies include Jews, Gypsies, Handicapped, and African Germans.)

      2. Wage war to expand living space at expense of other races. (Natural national-racial enemies in this war for living space were Poles, Russians, and other slavs.)

      3. A healthy race reproduces racially fit children and prepares for war. Germans who did not conform in this way removed themselves from the “volk” community. (Political opponents, Jehovah’s Witnesses and homosexuals.)

Students will record the information they find on their Victims of Nazi Ideology sheet.

  1. (10 Minutes) Brief class discussion on what the groups determined from the information given them, including what Nazi Racial Ideology applied to their victim groups. Call on each speaker for the group to come to the board and attach the artifact they chose as the representative of the most likely Nazi ideology used to target their group and share their group’s conclusion and a brief reason why they reached that conclusion. Have students write down the conclusion each group reached on the chart in their warm-up activity handout.

  1. (5 Minutes) Wrap-Up activity will involve assigning homework to students in the form of a reflective journal or essay on the following topic:

Do you believe that any of the Nazi ideologies used to target the other victims groups are still alive and effective in our world today? Explain your answer, using one or both of the following as examples:

        1. groups who are targeted today

        2. any of the other victims groups (handicapped, homosexuals, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Gypsies, Poles, Soviet Prisones of War) who are still targeted today

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