January 27th marks the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, the largest Nazi death camp. In 2005, the United Nations established International Holocaust Remembrance Day commemorating the tragedy of the Holocaust that occurred during the Second World War.
And while you may not be teaching a class that specifically focuses on the events of 1941-1945 as well as earlier discrimination and persecution under the Nazi government, it does provide a chance to connect those events to similar genocides both past and present. And to other acts of discrimination and persecution happening around the world and in the United States.
By remembering the Holocaust, we can honor survivors and challenge ourselves to use the lessons of their experience to inform our lives today.
There are many resources available. You might start with these:
- Yad Vashem Remembrance Day
- United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Special Focus on the 27th
- USHMM Lessons and Curricular Resources
- Teaching Resources from the Red Cross
- International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance Resources
- International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance Activity Pack
- Holocaust Memorial Day Trust
- PBS Remembrance Day Resources