Grade: Senior
Subject: History

#3031. Holocaust

History, level: Senior
Posted Mon Jan 19 18:10:49 PST 2004 by Melissa Mellott (
University of Pittsburgh-Johnstown, Johnstown, PA USA
Materials Required: Powerpoint
Activity Time: 50 minute lesson
Concepts Taught: Genocide-Holocaust

Lesson Plan

Teacher M. Mellott Date 11/24/03
Class World History________________________________________ Grade Level 12
Unit World War II Lesson Holocaust
PA Academic Standards 8.3.12D 8.4.12.A 8.4.12.B 8.4.12.C 8.4.12.D

Goal of this lesson:
To give students some insight into how and why the Holocaust occurred

Computer (PowerPoint)

Clerical/Administrative Tasks:
Take roll
Make copies of worksheet
Reserve a tv/vcr
Prepare PowerPoint

Instructional Objectives (Student-centered, observable, and precise statements of what students will be able to do)

TSWBAT use the information they gained during this unit to answer questions about different people's responsibility during the Holocaust.

TSWBAT understand how and why the Holocaust occurred and why the specific groups were targeted, and they will also use this to complete a brief paragraph about what it would have been like to live during this era.

TSWBAT answer a series of questions about the Holocaust during the lecture based on background information.

Introduction (attention getter, anticipatory set, discrepant event, open-ended problem scenario, engagement)
*Explain to students that they are going back to WWII, where they will be children in a concentration camp.
*Give each student a star with a name on it.
*At the end of class, they will find out whether they survived.
*I will then give students some background about the genocide which occurred to many people during WWII, and prepare them for a brief video.
*The introduction will be roughly 5 minutes.

Developmental Activities (Instructional components that provide opportunities for students to make progress toward intended instructional objectives)

*After the introduction, I will guide students through a video which deals with the Holocaust. This will give them a little background information so they will be able to participate in the lecture. This will take 15 minutes. This is an anticipatory set in which a framework for new learning is provided.

*After the video, I will ask the students to think about what it would have been like to be targeted and persecuted as those involved in the Holocaust were.

*I will then explain that my goal is for them to understand what the Holocaust was, and how and why it occurred. I will also ask them to use their knowledge and come up with a few reasons as to whether this could ever happen again. This will serve as teaching towards an objective.

*I will then proceed to lecture using PowerPoint, and question and answer. This will present new material and I will also be able to check for understanding by gauging the correctness of their answers. This will last roughly 15 minutes.

*After the lesson is completed, I will then give each student a copy of the handout that we will be working on together. This worksheet deals with assessing and defining responsibility of those who had a part in the Holocaust. I will do a few examples for them, modeling how I want them to think about and respond to each question. I will then use guided practice and allow the students to answer the remaining questions. I will provide feedback according to their responses. This will take about 15 minutes.

*Once this worksheet is completed, I will do a brief review of what students learned about the Holocaust, and ask them to use their knowledge and independent practice to complete a brief paragraph for homework on what they think it would have been like to live during and survive the Holocaust. If time permits, they may begin working on this.

Assessment/Evaluation (How you and the students will know that they learned. May be formative or summative)

How well they answer the questions in class, and also the worksheet and their homework will determine whether they actually learned the importance of the Holocaust

Conclusion (Closure; a planned wrap-up for the lesson)

*Remind students of their homework
*Go back to the stars with names on them given during the introduction, and tell each student whether they would have been killed or survived the Holocaust.

Accommodations/Adaptations for Students with Special Needs

(Learning disability-audio difficulties)
*I will provide this student with a handout of the key questions asked during class, so that they can follow along, but will still have to pay attention

Reflective Notes

PA Academic Standards-History

United States History
D. Identify and evaluate conflict and cooperation among social groups and organizations in United States history from 1890 to the Present
*Military Conflicts (World War II)

World History
A. Evaluate the significance of individuals and groups who made major political and cultural contributions to the world since 1450.
*Political and Military Leaders

B. Evaluate historical documents, material artifacts and historic sites important to the world since 1450
*Historic Places (Nazi Concentration Camps)

C. Evaluate how continuity and change throughout history has impacted belief systems and religions, commerce and industry, innovations, settlement patterns, social organization, transportation and roles of women since 1450.

D. Evaluate how conflict and cooperation among social groups and organizations impacted world history from 1450 to Present in Africa, Americas, Asia, and Europe.
*Military Conflicts
*Ethnic and racial instability

Key Questions

*Develop Concept of the genocide that occurred during WWII of different groups of people, and try and teach students how and why this occurred.

When you think of the mass murder of a group of people, what historic event during World War II comes to mind?

Who do you think was responsible for the Holocaust?

Do you know what country he was from?

Do you know anything else about him?

Why was he so against Jews especially?

What was his perfect person like?

Was he one?

When you think of the Holocaust, what group of people do you think about the most?

Were they the only group of people that were targeted?

What type of conditions do you think these people were placed in?

Can you imagine living in these conditions?

Do you think there was any resistance?

Do you think that its right that people don't believe this ever happened, especially with so much evidence that it has occurred?

Why do you think people don't believe this, what type of people do you think these are?

Do you think this could ever happen again?

PowerPoint Notes:
Systematic, bureaucratic, state-sponsored persecution and murder of approximately 6 million Jews by the Nazi regime and its collaborators.
A word of Greek origin meaning "sacrifice by fire"
How, and why did this happen??
Reasons the Holocaust Occurred:
The Nazis, who came to power in Germany in 1933, believed that Germans were "racially superior" and that the Jews, deemed "inferior" were "life unworthy of life."
Were the Jews the only group persecuted?
The Nazis also targeted other groups because of their perceived "racial inferiority"
Some of these groups include: Gypsies, homosexuals, Jehovah's Witnesses, and the mentally handicapped.
Where were the Jews placed?
The Nazis established:
1) ghettos
2) concentration camps
3) death camps

They were usually closed off, and were extremely crowded and unsanitary. These conditions led to repeated epidemics and a high mortality rate.
These ghettos were later destroyed, and Jews were shipped to concentration and death camps.
Concentration Camps
These camps are those in which people are detained or confined, usually under harsh conditions and without regard to legal norms of arrest and imprisonment.
These served as detention and labor centers.
Death Camps
These camps fulfilled the singular function of mass murder.
Over 3 million Jews died in these camps through gassing and shooting.
These camps were top secret
Bodies were removed and cremated, and the camps were re-landscaped or camouflaged.
How did this end?
The Germans were close to defeat, so they began a series of Death Marches.
These were forced marches of prisoners over long distances under heavy guard and extremely harsh winter conditions.
Many were shot, or died of exposure, starvation, and exhaustion.
The Allied forces advanced into Germany and liberated hundreds of thousands of prisoners
They were confronted with unspeakable conditions in camps, and it wasn't until then that the full scope of Nazi horrors was exposed to the world
The Aftermath
Most European Jewish communities were devastated, and the road to recovery would be a long and difficult one
Food for Thought. . .
Why do you think the Jews were specifically targeted?
Do you think that this could ever happen again?