I was six years old. It was the first day of school in September, 1941. [..] Marisha, my best friend, invited me to come with her to school. We met in the morning and walked together with a lot of other children. We reached the big high gates. The watchman of the school was standing by the gate. [..] Marisha went through the gate, and I followed her, as the watchmen greeted her."Where are you going?" he asked me."To school, to the first grade", I said proudly, and continued walking. The watchman blocked my way. "No, not you.""But I am six already" - I really am!"You are a Jew", he said, "Jews have no right to learn. No Jews in our school. Go home!" [..] Marisha, with the other children, ran into the building.[..] I did not cry. I thought: I'm Jewish. There is no place for me. I stood there until no one stood in front of the school. Only me. The new school year had begun. But not for me.
STEPS TO THE ‘FINAL SOLUTION’ The Nazis brought in many laws to restrict and persecute the Jews Throughout the 1930s. However, they then decided to move the Jews into separate housing conditions called ghettos. These were really poor housing conditions where many Jews died of disease or starvation. The Nazis still were not happy with having the Jews in their country so the only option left was the Final Solution. This was where Jews were deported (moved) to concentration camps where they would meet their deaths.
What is the message of this? It wasn’t only the Jews. It was also the mentally ill, the physically handicapped, the Gypsies and the gays who were imprisoned, tortured, shot, gassed and turned to ash because they didn’t fit someone’s narrow template of what it means to be human…Jews cannot fight anti semitism alone, Muslims cannot fight Islamophobia alone, gays cannot fight homophobia alone. The victim cannot cure the crime, the hated cannot cure the hater. We are as big or as small as the space we make for others who are not like us. May the memory of the victims of the Holocaust become our immune system against hate. May we stand together, fighting prejudice together. (Sir Jonathan Sacks, Chief Rabbi)
CONCENTRATION AND DEATH CAMPSConcentration= where they were made to workDeath camps= where they were sent to the gas chambers The Nazis decided that the best way to get rid of the Jews was through the establishment of concentration camps. Jews would be worked to the brink of death earning money for the Nazis and then sent to the gas chambers. Women, children, the sick or elderly were often not given the chance to work. They were gassed on their arrival to the camp.
Where do you think the Nazis chose to build the camps? Why?
The camps were surrounded by barbed wire and electric fences. They were Also guarded by soldiers with machine guns. It was very difficult to escape. If you managed to escape, the Nazis would often kill 10 prisoners in the camp. Why do you think they did this?
Railway tracks where prisoners were brought in...
Entrance to the camp that tried to deceive Jews even in the last step claiming that working would earn them the freedom. This sign says work = freedom. Why did the Nazis want to put this sign up? Recently, In 2009 someone stole this sign. It is rumoured a British Nazi supporter Wanted it for his collection.
SLEEPING CONDITIONS Prisoners in the concentration camps were made to share beds. These were like horses stables with No matresses or blankets- Why do you think the conditions were made so bad?
Food Rations- What does this account tell you about how much food the prisoners received? ‘We have learnt the value of food; now we also diligently scrape the bottom of the bowl after the ration and we hold it under our chins when we eat bread so as not to lose the crumbs. We, too, know it is not the same thing to be given a ladlefull of soup from the top or from the bottom of the vat, and we are already able to judge, according to the capacity of the various vats, what is the most suitable place to try and reach in the queue when we line up...’
ROLL COLL Prisoners were regularly made to stand for hours and be counted. Many Collapsed and died from sheer exhaustion. Often they could be standing there for 15 hours.
What could you do to prevent this atrocity being forgotten?
What can you do to help? Not forget what happened Talk to my friends and family and what I have learnt Teach other people e.g. Your children why this was wrong? I will speak out against racism or discrimination. Find out where other genocides have happened. Make sure I do not support any political party who have extreme views.
Video related clips BBC Auschwitz: The Nazis and the 'Final Solution' Episode 01 [1/5] (Year 9 and above) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a6jnawYwm3E The Pianist Film- clips from this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xxnplib2uG4 Schlindler’s List End Clip http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lPHvLtitxug Boy in the Striped Pajamas Trailer http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aKHBoi6BnMU&feature=related I am David trailer http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U-ayK9m0f_Q
REMEMBER - a Holocaust Documentary (Trailer) (Year 9 and above) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7bI1ucr_Y3U