High School Lesson Plans

When teaching lessons about the Holocaust, it is important to keep the student's age in mind. The matrix and lessons provided below may be used as a guideline for teachers of high school students.

Students see how individuals, groups and entire communities promote responsibility. In addition, they are exposed to discrimination, prejudice and antisemtism and their effects on people.

The following matrix was created by the Pinellas County Schools, Office of Community Services and Human Relations and The Florida Holocaust Museum and Educational Center to provide guidelines for Holocaust education in the high school.



analyzing human behavior and historical processes; identifying causes, forms, and effects of discrimination; setting standards for responsible action recognizing change over time; learning how indifference in the community can effect people's lives; rejecting stereotyping of others; opposing discrimination, prejudice, and antisemitism using art forms to express that which is vital to the community reading and interpreting primary sources; writing journals in response to historical and geographical problems recognizing ethical and unethical uses of power; becoming aware of individual, group, and community roles in advocating personal, societal, and political responsibility; promoting tolerance, understanding, and acceptance using technologies to gather historical and contemporary evidence in order to question and interpret

ACTIVITY All Men Are Created Equal. Students begin with a quotation from Lincoln and explore the theme of equality by reading news articles and by making a multimedia presentation.

ACTIVITY Bioethics of Eugenics. Students consider and discuss the ethical aspects of Nazi racial ideology including sterilization, marriage prohibitions, and euthanasia.

ACTIVITY Book Talk. Suggestions for activities related to the reading of a Holocaust-themed book include keeping a journal and e-mail correspondence with another student reading the same book.

ACTIVITY Bystanders in the Holocaust. Students recognize the effects of apathy and indifference and explore legal responses to issues raised by the Holocaust.

ACTIVITY Camels and Pyramids. Students identify patterns and rhythm in art.

ACTIVITY Camera of My Family. Discussion questions for use with the video, Camera of My Family.

ACTIVITY Cartoon: Truth or Tale. Students view Nazi propaganda and discuss the power of symbolism and suggestion.

ACTIVITY Class Memorial. Students plan and conduct a memorial service commemorating the victims of the Holocaust.

ACTIVITY Comprehension questions for use with The Wave video.

ACTIVITY Current Connections. Students explore ways to prevent deception about the Holocaust.

ACTIVITY David Olère. Students analyze the artworks of David Olère and compare them to Holocaust photographs on the site.

ACTIVITY Deliberate Acts of Kindness. Students recognize and honor the kind acts of Holocaust liberators and rescuers, cultivate their ability to do kind acts, and realize the importance of those acts to others.

ACTIVITY Diaries. Students explore the differences between Holocaust diaries and memoirs before creating their own diary.

ACTIVITY Eleventh Grade Language Arts Unit.

ACTIVITY Eleventh Grade Social Studies Unit.

ACTIVITY Epidemic, Plague and Infection. Students recognize disease vectors (pathways) and risk factors for infectious disease.

ACTIVITY The Final Solution. This student activity is designed to familiarize students with the evolution of antisemitism, to acquaint them with the political ideology of Nazism, to develop empathy for Nazi victims and their fate, and to assess responsibility.

ACTIVITY Folk Dances of Eastern Europe. Students experience folkdance as a form of expressive art and appreciate the rich cultural heritage of Eastern Europe.

ACTIVITY Forgotten Daughters. Students recognize the contribution of women in the Holocaust.

ACTIVITY Headlines. Students respond to news articles from the Holocaust era.

ACTIVITY A Holocaust Monument. Students respond using geometric shapes or forms to create a Holocaust monument.

ACTIVITY Holocaust Rescue. This activity will help students understand the perspective of a survivor and/or liberator.

ACTIVITY Human Nature. Students discuss a list of questions related to human nature.

ACTIVITY In the Lead. Students reflect upon questions posed in an article that appeared in a secret magazine published in the Terezín ghetto.

ACTIVITY In the Original Words. Students read, translate and discuss Holocaust documents written in their original languages.

ACTIVITY Interpretation. Students become familiar with the language used in Nazi Propaganda.

ACTIVITY Investigating Human Behavior. Students learn about human behavior such as prejudice and discrimination .

ACTIVITY Journey to America. A lesson on the book by Sonia Levitan.

ACTIVITY Käthe Kollwitz: Never Again War! Students investigate the life and artwork of Käthe Kollwitz.

ACTIVITY Letter of Memorial. Students write a letter to a foreign language newspaper in memory of victims or ask that readers remember the lessons of the Holocaust.

ACTIVITY Liberation and Return to Life. This student activity is designed to familiarize students with survivors and their lives after liberation.

ACTIVITY Looking at Photographs. Students analyze photographs for details needed to unlock meanings.

ACTIVITY Mapping Survivor Stories. Students trace a survivor's story using a timeline, map skills, photography, poetry, and/or prose.

ACTIVITY News Flash! Students create news headlines of the Holocaust.

ACTIVITY News Watch. Students track prejudice and human rights issues in current newspapers or on the Web.

ACTIVITY Oral History. Students interview members of an older generation and present their findings. Activity includes questions that would be appropriate to use with a Holocaust survivor.

ACTIVITY Population Density in the Ghettos. Students make calculations of population density and recognize the stressful conditions experienced by European ghetto dwellers due to high population density and scarcity of resources.

ACTIVITY Prejudice Discussion. Students discuss questions related to prejudice.

ACTIVITY Primary Source Materials. Students explore the use of primary sources in research.

ACTIVITY Raven' Beauties. Students learn about the Women of Ravensbrück and design a postage stamp to honor them.

ACTIVITY Research Janusz Korczak. Research children in the ghetto and discuss why Janusz Korczak gave his life to march to his death with the children.

ACTIVITY Resistance during the Holocaust. This student activity is designed to familiarize students with the different forms of resistance during the Holocaust.

ACTIVITY The Rise of Antisemitism. Students explore the evolution of antisemitism.

ACTIVITY Shemini Atzeret: Simhat Torah. Students become acquainted with a part of the rich heritage of the Jewish people.

ACTIVITY The Song of the Murdered Jewish People. Students are exposed to poetry by Zlata Razdolina set to music and practice narration.

ACTIVITY Starvation in the Ghettos. Students recognize the suffering and loss of life experienced in Holocaust ghettos due to food rationing, identify the basic food groups, USDA requirements and compare those to rations of ghetto and camp inmates.

ACTIVITY Survivor Interview. Students listen to stories from survivors of the Holocaust.

ACTIVITY Swiss Bank Accountability: Mock Trial. Students investigate the role of the Swiss in Nazi gold transactions during World War II.

ACTIVITY Teaching About Genocide by Joyce Freedman Aspel

ACTIVITY Testimony: A Lesson in Creating Poetry. Students create poetry by reformatting Holocaust testimony.

ACTIVITY Timeline. Students create a timeline of Holocaust events related to a survivor's story.

ACTIVITY The White Rose. Students compare articles about human rights and prejudice from current newspapers to the situation in Germany during the Holocaust.

WebLink Assignment: Rescue: The Story of Varian Fry and the Emergency Rescue Committee, an eight-day unit for high school.

WebLink The Beast Within is an interdisciplinary unit for ninth graders.

WebLink Deathly Silence: Everyday People in the Holocaust is a Holocaust education manual produced by the Southern Institute for Education and Research, Tulane University.

WebLink The History of the Holocaust from a Personal Perspective: Lesson plans from the Ernest and Elisabeth Cassutto Memorial Page.

WebLink The Holocaust/Genocide Project (HGP) is an international, nonprofit, telecommunications project focusing on study of the Holocaust and other genocides.

WebLink The Holocaust--A Guide for Teachers is an excellent teacher's guide to many important Holocaust topics such as prejudice, antisemitism, and Fascism. Each chapter includes objectives, activities, discussion questions, and other aids for the teacher.

WebLink The Holocaust: The Heart of Intolerance, an interdisciplinary unit of study for ninth grade.

WebLink Holocaust and Genocide Curriculum from the New Jersey Commission on Holocaust Education.

WebLink Study guide with activities was created for the PBS production The Trial of Adolf Eichmann.

WebLink Teacher Workbook for the exhibit, Anne Frank in the World, 1929-1945, produced by the Friends of Anne Frank in Utah and the Intermountain West Region.

WebLink Tereas Morretta's Holocaust lesson plans for grades 4-12.

WebLink The Truth About Anne Frank is a twelve hour class outline available at the Cybrary.

Curricular resources bibliography from the Simon Wiesenthal Center.

Sunshine State Standards.

A Teacher's Guide to the Holocaust
Produced by the Florida Center for Instructional Technology,
College of Education, University of South Florida © 1997-2013.