Valley of Tears
Read a poem written by Cantor Joseph Cysner about his experience during one of the first organized deportations of Jewish residents. Students will gain an understanding of the significance memory has on teaching history.
Students will watch a video by Yad Vashem explaining the Nazi ideology of race hierarchy. This lesson will open your students up to a discussion on race and the role it plays in society.
Nazi ideology pushed the need for racial purity and claimed that disobeying this would bring the destruction of mankind.
Begin by asking your students if they have heard of Darwin’s Theory of Evolution. What does it state? What was the theory applied to?
Show students a YouTube video titled, Key Historical Concepts in Holocaust Education: Race Doctrine by Yad Vashem. Before starting the video, give students the list of questions. Let them know they will have a chance to watch the video a second time.
Give students a few minutes to finish writing down their answers. Watch the video a second time if needed and then go over the questions as a class.
Divide the class into groups of four. Provide them with this quote by American novelist and winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature, Toni Morrison, “There is no such thing as race. None. There is just a human race – scientifically, anthropologically.”
In their groups, ask students to have a discussion with the questions below:
Reconvene as a class to open up the discussion. Were there any disagreements within the groups?
This lessons meets the following Academic Standards required by the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction.
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