You and your partners are going to conduct research on an individual or a group involved in resistance during the Holocaust and World War II. You will present your findings in a three to five-minute presentation using a visual (photographs, maps) and documents (letters, diaries, memoirs, poems, songs) to include the following information:
- Identify the group: members, purpose, how well organized
- Identify: who, what, when, where, why
- What type of resistance was it (physical, spiritual)?
- What risks did they take?
- What would have happened to them and their families if they had been caught? If they were caught, what happened to them?
- What emotional, mental, intellectual, financial, physical, and social resources did they use?
- What resources did they have that helped them succeed?
- What did they fight for?
- Who did they fight against?
- What did they accomplish? Were they successful? How did you decide if they were successful?
- What difference could an individual make?
Each group must have at least three sources for its topic.
Each group needs to present the teacher with a typed annotated bibliography before giving the presentation.
In your group, divide the work equally so that each student will be responsible for giving part of the presentation.
In presenting your information, deliver it in an organized fashion: do not say "In answer to number 1..." For example, begin with telling who the individuals are, their group, where they were located, and what they did. Then go on to discuss what type of resistance (physical or spiritual) and the risks they took. Describe the resources they had and used. If they were caught, what happened to them? Tell what they accomplished, and if they were successful, and how you decided if they were successful. Then tell us what difference your individual made. Following the presentation you will complete an individual and group evaluation of your work.
Possible Research Topics:
- Warsaw Ghetto Uprising. Individuals: Mordecai Anielewicz, Vladka Meed
- Vilna Partisans. Individuals: Abba Kovner, Hirsh Glik, Yitzhak Wittenberg
- Sobibór Uprising. Individuals: Leon “Leibl” Feldhandler, Lt. Aleksandr “Sasha” Pechersky
- Auschwitz-Birkenau Uprising. Individuals: Rosa Robota, Ella Gartner
- German Resistance: the Baum Gruppe (Group), the White Rose (Hans and Sophie Scholl), Dietrich Bonhoeffer
- Spiritual Resistance. Individuals: Emanuel Ringelblum, Janusz Korczak
- Jewish Fighters/Parachutists from Palestine. Individuals: Hannah Szenes (Senesh), Haviva Reik, Enzo Sereni
Key websites with which to begin your research:
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
Personal Histories; Center for Advanced Holocaust Studies—The Miles Lerman Center for the Study of Jewish Resistance; Holocaust Learning Center
Museum of Tolerance Online Multimedia Learning Center (external link)
A Teacher's Guide to the Holocaust (external link)
Information for teachers and students with a special section on resistance