Lesson Plan

History of Hatred

Students will learn the history of anti-Judaism and its relevance when studying the Holocaust. Open up into a discussion about prejudices in history and how rumors and hatred get carried through generations.

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Enduring Understanding

Stereotypes and misinformation of the Jewish people has persisted and changed through the years, with much of it still visible in present day.

Essential Question

  • 1Why is it important to study the history of anti-Judaism when discussing the Holocaust?


5 Min

Ask students how they define religion. Then, how might they define ‘religious differences’?
Furthermore, can they consider how religious differences have been handled throughout history? Is this a peaceful history or a bloody one?


25 Min

Divide the class into a maximum of six groups. Have each group elect one person as their recorder. Note that everyone else must read and all members should contribute to the answers.

Direct student to the resource, Anti-Judaism before the Enlightenment by Facing History and Ourselves. Ask students to read through the resource and go over the Connection Questions found at the bottom of the page in their small group. Have groups write down their answers. Give 25 minutes for this exercise.


15 Min

Come back together as a class and go over the answers to the connection questions. Ask each group to answer one question, selecting them randomly. Tell students they should be adding to their answers with thoughts discussed by the class and answers from other groups.

If time permits, ask students the questions below in an open discussion.

  1. Does this history feel relevant to the present day?
  2. Can you think of other groups that have faced similar hardships in history that still prevail today?
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