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Kristallnacht occurred in 1938.
|Grades||9 – 12|
|Calendar Activity Type||Historical Figure & Event|
In 1938, as Hitler began to dominate the lives of the Jewish population of Germany, Nazi soldiers were ordered to destroy Jewish stores and homes on what became known as Kristallnacht, or the Night of Broken Glass.
Many of the lessons associated with a study of Kristallnacht and the Holocaust focus on the incredibly vicious treatment of the Jews at the hands of Hitler and the Nazis. It is difficult to get students to understand how it was possible for the leaders of Germany at the time to wreak havoc on a segment of the German citizenry without others coming to their aid or rescue. To facilitate students' understanding, a journal prompt asking them to recall a time when they failed to come to the assistance of someone who needed help could be used at the beginning of the class period. An alternative would be to read "The Good Samaritan" from Rene Saldana's story collection Finding Our Way, in which a young man wrestles with just this situation.
- Kristallnacht: The Jewish Virtual Library
This resource discusses the events leading up to Kristallnacht. Links to books used as sources are included.
- The History Place: World War II in Europe
Photographs and other historical documents about Kristallnacht detail the horror and destruction of that night.
- Destruction of Synagogues on Kristallnacht
This map, from the Florida Center for Educational Technology's A Teacher's Guide to the Holocaust, provides information about the more than 200 synagogues destroyed during Kristallnacht. Links to timelines and other pieces of information are also at this site.
This online text, from the Simon Wiesenthal Museum of Tolerance, includes these hyperlinked sections: Fact Sheet, Personalities, Documents, and Eyewitness Accounts and Reminiscences.
Grades 10 – 12 | Lesson Plan | Standard Lesson
After students have read a book about the Holocaust, such as The Diary of Anne Frank or Night by Elie Wiesel, students will view Life is Beautiful and complete discussion questions to challenge their ability to analyze literature using film.
Grades 6 – 9 | Lesson Plan | Standard Lesson
After reading or viewing The Diary of Anne Frank, students will make connections between audience and purpose and revise a journal entry with an outside audience in mind.
Grades 7 – 10 | Lesson Plan | Standard Lesson
Anne Frank shared her experiences through a private diary that became public as a book. In this lesson, students will consider how writing creates social identities as they blog about a political issue.
Grades 6 – 8 | Lesson Plan | Unit
Social injustice occurs every day all over the world. In this lesson, students research a few historical examples of social injustice, including the Holocaust, the Trail of Tears, and Japanese internment.
Grades 6 – 8 | Lesson Plan | Unit
Students explore a variety of resources as they learn about the Holocaust. Working collaboratively, they investigate the materials, prepare oral responses, and produce a topic-based newspaper to complete their research.
Grades 6 – 8 | Lesson Plan | Standard Lesson
An Observation and Inquiry Sheet guides students as they analyze and compare their reactions to the value, engagement, and credibility of three websites related to Anne Frank and the Holocaust.
Grades 9 – 12 | Lesson Plan | Unit
Working in small groups, students read and discuss Elie Wiesel’s memoir Night and then take turns assuming the “teacher” role, as the class works with four different comprehension strategies.