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Lesson Plans for Teachers, using the
When Books Burn Exhibit Website

Contents:
dot Exploring the Titles and Authors
dot Exploring the Timeline
dot 1943 Timeline Project
dot Nazi Guidelines for Libraries
dot The Holocaust and the Online Catalog
dot Student Responses and Activities

The following are ideas that you may want to use with students (grades 5-12) viewing this Website. The suggestions are for a range of student age and maturity levels so please examine the activities carefully before making your selection(s).

While there are many lessons to be learned form viewing this exhibit, these activities emphasize development and application of library skills as well as issues of censorship and intellectual freedom.

Exploring the Titles and Authors

Objective: Students will view list of banned books presented in the exhibit
Objective: Students will identify selected titles and authors
Objective: Students will locate biographical information on selected authors

  1. From the exhibit introduction page, have students click on "List of "proscribed" books in University of Arizona Library."
  2. Have students view the list and ask students to identify one author and book title.
  3. Ask them to write down the name of the title and author.
  4. Direct students or demonstrate to students how to click on the Encyclopedia Britannica biography to lead to biographical information on the author.

-- or --

Objective: Students will view list of banned books presented in the exhibit
Objective: Students will identify selected titles and authors
Objective: Students will locate biographical information on selected authors
Objective: Students will identify the contributions these authors have made to our society.

  1. From the exhibit introduction page, have students click on "List of "proscribed" books in University of Arizona Library."
  2. Have students view the list and ask students to identify one title.
  3. Have students go to the University of Arizona's SABIO Gateway: http://www.library.arizona.edu/
  4. Explain what a library catalog is, if appropriate.
  5. Have students click on the "Catalog of Books and More" icon.
  6. Using the SABIO catalog have students look up the title of the book they selected from the display.
  7. Show students how to identify the author of the book from the record on the screen.
  8. Have students do an author search on SABIO and identify the other books we have by this author.
  9. Direct students to biographical materials. You may want to have them explore materials available in their library for more information on these authors. You may want to demonstrate or have students go to Brittannica.com (http://www.britannica.com/) to locate biographical information on the author they chose. (Not every author will be included) If you or your school has access to an online database such as Biography Resource Center + The Complete Marquis Who's Who, you can demonstrate how to find biographical information about several of the authors or show students how to search the database and have them find information on the author they have chosen.
  10. Follow up discussion for either of the above activities can center on these authors and the contributions they and their works have made to our society.

Exploring the Timeline

Objective: Students will navigate the When Books Burn Website
Objective: Students will read a timeline
Objective: Students will identify the increasing oppression and progressive loss of rights and privileges exhibited through the timeline.

  1. Demonstrate navigational structure of the When Books Burn Website: have students go to the welcome page, and then the Introduction to the site. Show students the "table of contents" below the introduction, and explain that there are a number of different areas covered in this web exhibit.
  2. Have students click on the Timeline.
  3. Have students look at the timeline-from 1928-1933. (Students can view this on a demonstration screen or at their own workstation)
  4. Have half of the students select a date and event before May 10th, 1933. Have half of the class select a date and event after May 10th 1933. Go around the room and ask the first half of the class one by one to read a "before May 10th" date and event aloud, then have the other students each read an "after May 10th" date and event.
  5. Have students look at timeline again.
  6. Discuss with students how these events demonstrate increasing loss of rights and increasing acts of oppression.

1943 Timeline Project

Have the students do the first timeline activity directly above. Then for older more mature students:
Objective: Students will view the 1943 timeline.
Objective: Students will identify the increasing levels of oppression and atrocity that took place during 1943.
Objective: Students will discuss the importance of protecting individual rights and, freedom of speech and thought and intellectual freedom.

  1. Have students click on "The Holocaust Project Multimedia Timebase" link at the top of the Timeline page.
  2. Then have them click on 1943. Be aware that this site lists such atrocities as: 1943 February 11-- 1,000 Jews from France, including several hundred children and old people are transported to Auschwitz. All the children are gassed on arrival and only 10 of the others will survive.
  3. Ask students: How do these events compare to the ones we discussed on the earlier timeline.
  4. Then ask: How does viewing the exhibit and exploring the Website help you to better understand the following quote "Where one burns books, one will soon burn people."

Nazi "Guidelines" for Libraries

Objective: Students will read the Nazi "Guidelines" for libraries
Objective: Students will be led in a discussion of the implications of censorship, loss of intellectual freedom and loss of freedom of speech in today's world

Have students click on Lists of Banned Books, 1932-1939 and then click on [Guidelines] 1935. Have them read the guidelines to themselves.

Some suggested questions to promote thinking and discussion after they have read the guidelines:

  1. Think of authors or books that might be banned today under these types of guidelines. What would be lost if no one could ever again read this book/ or books by this author or books on this topic?
  2. Think of a favorite book or a book that has influenced you. What would be lost if no one could ever again read this book/ or books on this topic.
  3. What are some of today's controversial topics? What would be lost if no one could ever again read books on these topics.

The Holocaust and the Online Catalog

Objective: Students will search the SABIO online catalog by subject: under: Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945)
Objective: Students will browse the catalog and view the number of different subdivisions or subtopics they find under the subject .
Objective: Students will gain an understanding of the body of work that has been created around this event and the magnitude of the issues, perspectives and implications. (For example the number of books about specific countries, the different books devoted to the causes, or the fact that there are entire dictionaries and encyclopedias of the holocaust).

  1. Demonstrate or have students go to the University of Arizona's SABIO Gateway: http://www.library.arizona.edu/
  2. Explain what a library catalog is, if appropriate.
  3. Demonstrate or have students click on the "Catalog of Books and More" icon.
  4. Using the SABIO catalog, demonstrate or have students browse all of the subdivisions under Holocaust, Jewish (1939-1945).
  5. Have students complete tasks that will give them an awareness of the number of works that the events of the Holocaust have generated. Have students look at subdivisions by country , or look at the titles under causes.
  6. Lead students in a discussion that will help them gain an understanding of the body of work that has been generated around this event and the magnitude of its importance.

Student Responses and Activities

Objective:Students will visit Internet sites that show student responses to the holocaust today
Objective: Students will develop ideas for remembering and communicating the significance of book burning and censorship.

  1. Have students read Class act teaches life lessons Kids collecting 6 million paper clips to remember Holocaust on the Washington Post Internet site http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A52269-2001Apr7.html It is about the Whitewell Middle School Holocaust Group Paperclip Project
  2. Then have students visit the Whitewell Middle School's site at http://www.marionschools.org/holocaust/
  3. Have students read the information under "mission" and "about the project"
  4. Lead students in a discussion of what they might want to do to help others better understand the significance of the holocaust and book burning events.
  5. Summary questions for students:
    1. How does viewing the exhibit and exploring the Website help you to better understand the following quote "Where one burns books, one will soon burn people."
    2. How does viewing the exhibit and exploring the Website help you to better understand the importance of freedom of speech or intellectual freedom?

Curriculum ideas created by Louise Greenfield,
University of Arizona Social Sciences Team Librarian

If you use any of these curriculum ideas, or come up with your own,
we would love to hear about your experiences.
Please e-mail Louise (GreenfieldL@u.library.arizona.edu)
or Lisa (BunkerL@u.library.arizona.edu) with your comments.

 

 

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Questions? Comments? Contact Curators Lisa Bunker and Bonnie Travers
Website created and maintained by Lisa Bunker

Last updated February 19, 2002

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