K-12 News

Lessons of the Holocaust

Kentucky is among the states that require the teaching of the history of the Holocaust. As Holocaust Remembrance Day approaches, utilize KET’s Lessons of the Holocaust collection, which offers educators a detailed exploration of ways to approach the topic in the classroom. 

Murals of the Holocaust

For over 20 years, a summer program for gifted adolescents at Western Kentucky University has offered an arts-integrated history course on Nazi Germany and the Holocaust. The course concludes with students working as a group to create a large mural on the Holocaust. In this way, students use the power of art to deal with their own emotions as well as to educate others.

In this video collection, you will learn about a mural program and also hear the stories of a Holocaust survivor and the son of a Holocaust survivor who are involved with the program.

Juliek’s Violin 

One of the most famous scenes from Elie Wiesel’s Night depicts a young musician named Juliek playing his violin when he was on the brink of death in the concentration camp. The Juliek’s Violin concert program in Louisville, Ky., featured three pieces: a Chopin Nocturne, the opening of Verdi’s Requiem, and a moving duet between Wiesel’s words in Night and an excerpt from Beethoven’s Violin Concerto—the very music Juliek played. The Beethoven piece is played on a Violin of Hope, a restored violin that was once owned by and played by a Jewish musician during the Holocaust. These three videos focus on the music and its ties with Holocaust history.

Teaching the Holocaust 

Learn how two middle school educators in Louisville approach the teaching of Holocaust history to their students. Fred Whittaker, a teacher at St. Francis of Assisi School, discusses the appropriate age to begin studies, community service, and how to talk about the dynamics of “otherness.”  He also describes a project where students make deep connections by pairing pictures of themselves with similar pictures of Jews who died in the Holocaust.

Drama teacher Kim Joiner of Noe Middle School explains how she incorporates the arts into Holocaust history lessons. She describes how she facilitates discussions of social justice, deals with the emotional impact of the Holocaust in a sensitive manner with middle school students, and connects the study of the Holocaust to the drama classroom in ways that remain respectful of the lives lost.