“Those who forget the history, are condemned to repeat it”.
Bolshe Nikogda (Never Again!) is a unique supplemental education project funded by the Claims Conference and the Marks JCH of Bensonhurst. The goal of the Program “Never Again” is to supplement local schools with Holocaust learning workshops. These workshops will introduce historical insight into what occurred in the former Soviet Union during WWII. The project will bring eyewitnesses/survivors of the Holocaust into classrooms. These survivors lived in the Soviet Union and came to the US only fairly recently. They will share their personal experiences and provide students with a unique opportunity that is not covered by the NYC schools’ Holocaust curriculum. By bringing a Holocaust survivor/witness into the classroom, the program is adding a personal dimension that will help the students understand the history of 70 years ago. The workshop and all supplemental materials are designed in partnership with the Museum of Jewish Heritage for students of 6th – 12th grades.
The structure of the workshop is the following: Prior to the actual workshop, a teacher will be supplied with pre-visit materials such as maps, Holocaust History terminology and a survivor’s life story outline. Using these materials, a teacher will be able to introduce students of the upcoming workshop, giving them highlights of the speakers’ historical backgrounds based on the following concepts:
- Before the war, Jews lived in both – big cities and rural areas.
- People of all nationalities lived peacefully together.
- When the Nazis came, people separated in two categories: some joined the Nazis in persecution of their Jewish neighbors; and others, while risking their own lives protected the Jews.
- Some Jews hid from Nazi executions/massacres.
- Another way of surviving was to run away.
- Another place of refuge was with partisans.
- Even after the war, there was anti-Semitism in the former Soviet Union.
- The USA is the refuge from anti-Semitism.
On the day of the presentation/workshop, a survivor will come to the school accompanied by an English/Russian speaking translator. The workshop includes two parts: the survivor personal story (30-35 minutes) and answers to student questions (10 minutes). The teacher could suggest any preferred highlights of the survivor’s story. Projection equipment may be used during the presentation to show historical pictures of a survivor, etc.
After the presentation, the teacher will be supplied with post-visit materials, such as a bibliography and a list of suggested post-visit activities.
The Marks JCH will collaborate with all interested participants and resolve any difficulties with logistics that may arise. For more information about the educational program or to arrange for a survivor to visit your class, and to receive a packet of pre-visit curriculum materials, please visit www.jchb.org or call 718-943-6390.