New preparation lesson for a visit to the Auschwitz Memorial
A visit to the Auschwitz Memorial is a valuable personal experience for every visitor. The International Centre for Education has prepared a special “Preparation lesson for a visit to the Auschwitz Memorial” dedicated to schoolchildren and teachers planning a visit to the former Nazi Germany concentration and extermination camp. Its authors are teachers Adam Musiał and Monika Witalis-Malinowska.
- We wanted to prepare a lesson that would be written in a language appropriate for students aged 13-14, that is, the youngest visitors to the Auschwitz Memorial. The lesson methodology is based on short descriptions of the most important events, elements of the ideology and history of the Third Reich, concentration and Holocaust camps. This fundamental set of facts enriched with personal accounts of witnesses will provide a better understanding of what happened in Auschwitz, during the visit to the Memorial - said Agnieszka Juskowiak-Sawicka, head of e-learning at the ICEAH.
The first part of the lesson presents basic information on Nazi ideology - how the Nazi party came to power in Germany, how it limited democracy and eliminated political opponents in Germany, as well as the escalation of anti-Semitic laws.
The second part describes the concepts of “protected detention” in the German Third Reich, the creation of the first concentration camps, reasons for the establishment of Auschwitz as a concentration camp for Polish political prisoners, as well as the realities of prisoners’ lives. - Here, we included excerpts of the accounts of witnesses, former prisoners of Auschwitz, in which they describe their transformation into prisoners, living conditions, maltreatment, slave labour, starvation, diseases and pseudo-medical experiments - added Agnieszka Juskowiak-Sawicka.
The last part is devoted to the Holocaust of the Jews carried out by Nazi Germany both in occupied Europe and the Auschwitz camp. A special chapter is also dedicated to the extermination of the Roma and Sinti. The entire lesson also contains exercises for schoolchildren.