A lot of teachers, at least in my district, are looking for Holocaust resources and documentaries for middle school to teach their Anne Frank or World War II unit around this time of year. If you are preparing to start the same, check out some of these great resources for introducing your Diary of Anne Frank unit or World War II unit to your middle schoolers. Educating your students about the Holocaust and events helps them learn, remember, appreciate, and respect those who went through these events. Studying history helps students understand and grapple with complex questions. It also helps them analyze dilemmas by examining how the past has shaped (and continues to shape) global, national, and local relationships between societies and people.
Holocaust & Anne Frank Teaching Resources
1.Voices of the Holocaust– The link below provides details and actual quotes from people who lived through the event. There is information about what it was like before the Holocaust began, what it was like in the concentration camps, and more
2. While there is graphic video in this “One Survivor Remembers” documentary about Gerda Weissmann Klein, it shows students how terrible of an event the Holocaust really was.
3. This article does incorporate current politics, but you may also want to include this Newsweek article in your introduction. It would be very thought provoking for students to form their own opinions and explain why they agree or disagree with this article.
4. You can find an in-depth introduction to the Holocaust on the website of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum HERE.
5. Now, this last resource, a lot of teachers differ on. This is a video clip of Oprah Winfrey interviewing Elie Wiesel who was awarded a Nobel Peace Prize in 1986 “for being a messenger to mankind: his message is one of peace, atonement and dignity.” He was a Jewish writer who wrote about his experiences as a prisoner in concentration camps. Some teachers like to show this interview as an introduction to their unit. Others prefer to show it at the end, particularly if they have read his book, Night.
Other Helpful Holocaust Resources for Your Middle School Units
1. Blog Post-How to Teach the Diary of Anne Frank
2. The United States Holocaust Museum
3. Facing History-Teaching the Holocaust-Bearing Witness
Hopefully this is a helpful list for you either in now or in the future. Please be sure to share your favorite Holocaust resources so we can keep our list growing.