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Holocaust education and film resources for middle and high school students and teachers

  • April 7, 2021

This year as commemorations for Yom Hashoah / Holocaust Remembrance Day on Thursday, April 8 move online, ADL would like share the following educational resources, including video and film resources for middle and high school students, parents and teachers. Thanks to Todd Hennessey, director of Colorado Holocaust Educators for his partnership in helping to compile this resource list.

ADL also thanks our generous supporters for sponsoring this year’s virtual Governor’s Holocaust Remembrance Program:

The Curtiss-Lusher Family
The Feiner Family Foundation and Michael and Debbie Feiner
The M. B. Glassman Foundation
MDC/Richmond American Homes Foundation
Zeff Kesher Foundation 

Video resources for 2021

Colorado Holocaust Survivors Speak Out

This year, five Colorado Holocaust Survivors answered the question: what do we still have to learn today from the lessons of the Holocaust? Listen to their message here.

 

Films About the Holocaust for Middle and High School Students

Five Go-To Films for Teaching the Holocaust to Middle and High School Students

  • “One Survivor Remembers; Gerda Weissman Klein”

This film offers one of the best survivor accounts available by taking the viewer on Gerda’s journey from the invasion of Poland to liberation. The full video has recently been made available by the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (USHMM) via a recent agreement with HBO. Classroom resources are available here.

 

  • “Path to Nazi Genocide”

A USHMM video, highly recommended for both educators and with additional context on the meaning behind the Holocaust (1933-1945) and the Final Solution (1941-1945) would be appropriate for students. Links at the bottom of the USHMM web page offer additional educational material.

 

  • “A Film Unfinished”

This film offers a unique perspective on Nazi ghettos and Nazi Propaganda.  Appropriate for educators, and with additional context for both ghettos and propaganda would be appropriate for older high school students.  Discussion questions and lesson plans available here.

 

  • “Prosecuting Evil”

A powerful film on the horrors of the Nazi regime, the Nuremberg Trials, and the contemporary connection.  The protagonist was one of the attorneys representing the United States at the Nuremberg Trials.  A Q&A with the director is available here.

 

  • “Defiance”

A major Hollywood movie that focuses specifically on Jewish Resistance during the Holocaust. Recommended for educators and, with context provided first, for students.  The Jewish Partisan Education Foundation has resources to accompany the movie as well as a number of other excellent resources. NOTE: This movie is rated R and is only appropriate for older students.

 

7 Ideas for Teaching Teens About the Holocaust Using Books and Film Clips

  • The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum has produced a powerful film, The Path to Nazi Genocide, that is not only an excellent resource for history teachers but can be used for engaging and thought-provoking cross-curricular lessons. Stream it online or get a free copy of the DVD here.

 

Survivor Video Accounts

Each of the Survivors featured here has been invited to participate as a keynote speaker at ADL’s Governor’s Holocaust Remembrance Program during the past five years.

 

2020: Renée Fink: Renée’s Story

2019: Gene and Dr. Jill Klein

2018: Sidney Zoltak

2017: Hannah Berger Moran

2016: Margit Meissner z”l PLUS presentation of Righteous Among the Nations award to the family of Dr. Maria Kiss Madi, rescuer

Note: Righteous Among the Nations presentation at approximate 30 minute mark; Margit Meissner keynote at approximately 1 hour mark.

2015: Eva Kor z”l

 

Additional Resources for Educators and Families

Echoes & Reflections video toolbox

This video toolbox offers reflection and discussion questions for educators to use with students prior to and following film viewing. Echoes and Reflections also has copious other materials, including webinars for teachers and more. Visit Echoes and Reflections here.

 

Answering students’ toughest questions

From “why didn’t ordinary Germans protest Hitler’s actions?” to “why were Jews hated so much?” this list of questions and answers will be invaluable to educators having conversations about the Holocaust with students of all ages, but particularly middle and high school age students.

 

Yad Vashem: The World Holocaust Remembrance Center offers an unprecedented array of educational materials including educational videos, survivor testimonies, historical videos and more. A new online exhibition of artifacts related to liberation is available to view here.

 

Survival to Service: Examining Lives of Hidden Children of the Holocaust

This issue of Curriculum Connections provides a lesson plan for middle and high school students, based on the life of a hidden child of the Holocaust, and resources that draw upon individual stories of loss, survival and rescue to raise student awareness about the Holocaust and increase their commitment to moral decision-making and to the role of the individual in combating bias and hate.

 

The Struggle to Prevent Genocide: The Promise of Never Again

This issue of Curriculum Connections designed for high school students explores what the world has done to achieve the ideal of “never again” and why these efforts have fallen short of averting atrocities in places such as Rwanda and the Sudan.

 

Children of the Holocaust: A Discussion Guide

This discussion guide recounts the war-time experiences of three child survivors. These survivors speak for their friends and siblings—the one-and-a-half million children who were murdered during the Holocaust. The stories of the survivors are resources and activities for middle and high school students that will help in increasing their awareness of the Holocaust and how it affected the children.

 

Additional Holocaust Resources

In conjunction with ADL’s focus on Holocaust remembrance and education, we would like to highlight an evolving collection of resources for parents, educators and community members.