The Gizella Abramson Teaching the Holocaust Conference West

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The Gizella Abramson Teaching the Holocaust Conference West

October 19, 2023 @ 8:00 am - 4:00 pm
Winston Salem/Forsyth County School Education Building

From 8-4 PM at the Education Building of WSFCS in Winston-Salem, NC, ELA and Social Studies teachers from grades 6-12 will hear from a Holocaust survivor, learn from experts in the field, experience hands-on lessons, and explore resources for teaching the Holocaust. Public school classroom teachers will have their substitute paid for if they attend the conference.

Before attending this workshop, we recommend that you watch the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum The Path to Nazi Genocide if you have not already done so, as it will give you historical context for the time period of the Holocaust. It is a four part series on You Tube and is under forty minutes to watch for the entire documentary. Access the link below to begin watching the video:

THE PATH TO NAZI GENOCIDE

The Gizella Abramson Teaching the Holocaust Conference West Agenda

Below, you will see the agenda for this conference, which will also have all of the presentations and files embedded for your use by the day of the workshop.

Contact Information for the Conference Facilitators: 

Lee Holder, Region 2 Director: historyhawk308@gmail.com

Juanita Ray, Region 3 Director: holocaustncwest@gmail.com

Laurie Schaefer, Region 5 Director: lschaefer@wsfcs.k12.nc.us

Amy Clark, Region 7 Director: uncgirl1989@gmail.com

Stacey Dotson, Region 8 Director: srcdotson@gmail.com

Cindy Kellar, Region 2 Co-Director: cynthia.kellar@kcs.k12.nc.us

Meredith Howell, Region 4 Co-Director: meredith.howell@stanlycountyschools.org

Casey Voss, Region 4 Co-Director: casey.voss@stokes.k12.nc.us

Amy Todd, Region 5 Co-Director: atodd@randolph.k12.nc.us

Liz Weide, Region 5 Co-Director: meweide@wsfcs.k12.nc.us

AGENDA ITEMS LINKS TO RESOURCES USED

8:00-8:15: Introductions/Housekeeping

8:15-9:15: Americans and the Holocaust: Dr. Becky Erbelding

Dr. Becky Erbelding, a historian with the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, will join us virtually to share an overview of the Americans and the Holocaust exhibit at the USHMM. Participants will learn about the choices that Americans made during the 1930s and 1940s and what they knew about the Holocaust as it was happening.

9:15-9:30: Break

9:30-10:45: Breakout Session #1 (Teachers Choose One): 

 

Guidelines and Photo Narrative Lesson 

In this session, teachers will explore the USHMM’s Guidelines for Teaching the Holocaust and a lesson using historical photographs from the USHMM’s collection that teachers can use in their classrooms, no matter the age or subject. Teaching Holocaust history demands a high level of sensitivity and keen awareness of the complexity of the subject matter, and these resources and lessons will help teachers explore responsible pedagogy and help students answer how and why the Holocaust happened. Teachers who are new to teaching the Holocaust are especially encouraged to attend this session, but all teachers who are not familiar with the Guidelines or this introductory lesson to teaching the Holocaust are welcomed. 

9:30-10:45: Breakout Session #1 (Teachers Choose One): 

Challenges of Escape Lesson 

Why didn’t the Jews just leave? Students often ask this question when they begin their study of the Holocaust, so this lesson incorporates primary sources, survivor testimony, and historical facts to help answer this complex question. By the end of the lesson, students may change their question to “How could so many of the Jews have managed to leave Germany?” Teachers of any experience in teaching the Holocaust will find this lesson to be an important one to use with their students.

9:30-10:45: Breakout Session #1 (Teachers Choose One): 

Americans and the Holocaust: Refugees and Rescuers: The Courage to Act Lesson

In this lesson, students will explore the intertwined personal stories of Jewish refugees who attempted to flee to the United States and the American rescuers who intervened on their behalf. Using a Jigsaw strategy that will allow students to delve deeply into the story of one refugee, students will come to understand how circumstances of time, place, and opportunity in many cases limited the ability of Americans to help and refugees’ ability to escape. This lesson is recommended for those teachers who have more time to teach about the Holocaust and can help their students do a deeper dive into the challenges faced by the refugees and the rescuers. 

 

10:45-11:00: Break

11:00-12:15: Breakout Session #2 (Teachers Choose One): 

Interactive Timeline Lesson 

How can teachers bring the study of the Holocaust into their classrooms in an engaging way that puts the learning in the students’ hands? This highly-adaptable lesson will help teachers present the chronology of the Holocaust in all its complexity, and it will help students understand the history of the Holocaust and how and why the Holocaust happened. Teachers just beginning to teach about the Holocaust should consider coming to this session to learn how to teach the history of the Holocaust and how it impacted the choices that people made, but anyone who is not familiar with the timeline activity are also encouraged to choose this session.

11:00-12:15: Breakout Session #2 (Teachers Choose One): 

History of Antisemitism and the Holocaust Lesson

 Using resources from the USHMM and an interactive Google slides presentation for students, this lesson will walk participants through a history of antisemitism, Nazi racism, and connections to antisemitism today. Helping students understand how and why the Holocaust happened and how antisemitism manifests itself today in our world, including in North Carolina, are key takeaways from this lesson.

11:00-12:15: Breakout Session #2 (Teachers Choose One): 

Propaganda in the Holocaust Lesson 

How did words, images, and other techniques shape the general public’s thinking in Nazi Germany? What are some ways participants can engage their students in discussion related to antisemitism and hatred? Participants will discuss propaganda and take part in an activity that will help implement the study of Nazi propaganda in their classrooms.

12:15-1:15: Lunch on your own

1:15-1:45: Introduction to the Gizella Abramson Holocaust Education Act Curriculum Resources

As a whole group, we will explore the process for creating the curriculum resources for the Gizella Abramson Holocaust Education Act, the intended use for the curriculum resources, and other information about the legislation. 

1:45-2:45: Social Studies and ELA teachers breakout sessions

ELA and Social Studies teachers will break into different groups and rooms to explore content-specific resources for teaching the Holocaust. Teachers will also explore the new North Carolina Council on the Holocaust website and the resources available on it.

2:45-3:00: Break

3:00-3:45: Holocaust Survivor Speaker

After watching the Centropa documentary, Return to Rivne, the story of Shelly Weiner and her cousin, Shelly will join us for questions and answers about her experiences of hiding during the Holocaust and how she and some members of her family survived.

3:45-4:00: Q & A, Evaluations

Stay in Touch!
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