Kindertransport Lesson

Download a PDF of the Lesson here

Students will focus on the Kindertransport during the Holocaust as an act of rescue and resistance. This lesson would fit well into other lessons on rescue and resistance during the Holocaust, perhaps even before an in-depth study of the camps so students can learn that it was not inevitable that all of the Jews would be persecuted. We suggest pairing this lesson with the Kindertransport exhibit that you can request from the NC Council on the Holocaust.

Grade Level: 9-12

Subject: English Language Arts, Social Studies

Duration: One 90-minute class period

NC Standards Addressed:


RI 2: Determine a central idea of a text and analyze its development over the course of the text, including how it emerges and is shaped and refined by specific details; provide an objective summary of the text.

RI 4: Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text; analyze the cumulative impact of specific word choices on meaning and tone.

Social Studies:

WH.H.1.3: Use Historical Analysis and Interpretation to: 1. Identify issues and problems in the past. 2. Consider multiple perspectives of various peoples in the past. 3. Analyze cause-and-effect relationships and multiple causations. 4. Evaluate competing historical narratives and debates among historians. 5. Evaluate the influence of the past on contemporary issues.

WH.H.1.4: Use Historical Research to: 1. Formulate historical questions. 2. Obtain historical data from a variety of sources. 3. Support interpretations with historical evidence. 4. Construct analytical essays using historical evidence to support arguments.

Essential Question:

What choices did individuals and governments have in rescuing those targeted by the Nazi regime?

Learning Objectives:

After the lesson, students will be able to:

  • Understand what the Kindertransport was and how it saved lives during the Holocaust
  • Know that individuals and governments made choices about whether or not to rescue people during the Holocaust

Previewing Vocabulary:

  • Righteous– morally right or justifiable; virtuous
  • Kinder– Children


(Links to Google Docs, Forms, and Slides will ask you to make a copy):


  1. Before teaching the lesson, contact the NC Council on the Holocaust traveling exhibit coordinator for your area and arrange to have the Kindertransport Exhibit come to your school. Display it in a hallway or the media center if your classroom is not large enough. Also arrange for students to have devices such as chromebooks for the lesson, as well as headphones. Make a copy of the Google slides presentation for each student and share it with them on your digital platform of choice such as Google Classroom or Canvas.
  2. Begin class with a KWL chart about the Kindertransport before giving instructions to the students for the lesson. Do this as a whole class on your board.
  3. Divide the class into two groups and have the first half get on chromebooks and complete the Introduction to the Kindertransport Google slide presentation. Have the 2nd half go through the Kindertransport Exhibit, using one of the lesson ideas and the interactive quiz. Halfway through the class, switch student groups.
  4. Debrief at the end of class with a short whole group discussion about what they learned and questions that they may have.


E-Learning Adaptation:

Use the Google form exit ticket to have students respond to reflective questions at the end of the each student in your digital platform.


As a follow up lesson or resources that you can use to extend student learning on this topic.

  1. Show the Power of Good film and use the provided study guide.
  2. Show Into the Arms of Strangers (free on Amazon Prime) and use the provided study guide.
  3. Show the Centropa film about Lilli Tauber: A Suitcase Full of Memories.
  4. Share more film clips of Kindertransport survivors (scroll down to Kindertransport).
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