The LESSON PLAN is now available! Check out the brochure and promotional video then contact us to bring this free educational project to your school or organization. It isn't just limited to Connecticut!
Why Teach the Holocaust?
Empathy: Teaching the Holocaust, especially to Middle and High School students, exposes young minds to this dark chapter in human history and fosters empathy, promotes critical thinking and cultivates a sense of social responsibility. Introducing students to the stories and experiences of Holocaust survivors and victims helps develop empathy and compassion. By understanding the immense pain and suffering endured by millions of innocent people, students are encouraged to empathize with others and actively work toward a more compassionate and just society.
Preventing Prejudice and Discrimination: The Holocaust was rooted in prejudice, bigotry and the dehumanization of certain groups. Teaching about the Holocaust exposes students to the dangers of prejudice and discrimination based on race, religion, ethnicity, gender and other characteristics. By understanding the consequences of unchecked hatred, students can develop a strong commitment to equality, tolerance and respect for all individuals.
Critical Thinking: It requires critical analysis of historical sources, propaganda and misinformation. Students can learn to evaluate evidence, question narratives and think critically about the events that led to the Holocaust. This empowers them to become discerning consumers of information and guards against the manipulation of facts and the spread of misinformation.
Historical Awareness: It is crucial for students to have a foundational understanding of this period. By studying the Holocaust, students gain historical context and a broader perspective on the causes and consequences of World War II. This knowledge helps them grasp the complexities of global conflicts and appreciate the importance of peaceful coexistence.
Social Responsibility: By examining the actions of individuals who actively resisted the Nazis or helped rescue Jews, students understand the power of individual choices and the impact they can have on society. The Holocaust serves as a poignant reminder of the importance of standing up against injustice, promoting human rights, and making a positive difference in the world.
Foster Multicultural Understanding: The Holocaust affected not only Jews but also other targeted groups, such as Romani people, disabled individuals, LGBTQ+ individuals, and political dissidents. Teaching about the Holocaust encourages students to appreciate and understand diverse cultures, backgrounds and identities. It promotes inclusivity and helps create an environment that celebrates differences and rejects discrimination.
Resilience and Moral Courage: The stories of Holocaust survivors and the heroes who resisted Nazi persecution often exemplify resilience and moral courage. By learning about their experiences, students can be inspired to develop their own resilience and moral compass. They learn the importance of standing up for what is right, even in the face of adversity, and develop the courage to challenge injustice and intolerance.
The Preservation Society's educational programming has been widely praised by students and teachers.