WINTER-SPRING 2015 - 5775

"We don't want our past to be our children's future," was the powerful message from Auschwitz survivor Roman Kent during the January 27 ceremony at Auschwitz-Birkenau, commemorating the 70th anniversary of its liberation by Soviet troops.


2014-2015 holds significant anniversaries of both ongoing genocide and ongoing liberation as the war draws to a close. New resources highlight this period for your classroom. We also encourage you to explore the anniversaries of post-war response, from the establishment of displaced persons camps under UNRRA, to the start of the International Military Tribunal in Nuremberg, to the solemn self-examination of Church teachings, prompted by the horrors of the genocide. Fifty years ago the Second Vatican Council's Declaration of Nostra Aetate ("In Our Time") set a model to reframe perspectives of the "other" through introspection, dialogue and education.


Such anniversaries offer opportunity not only for commemoration but for commitment to ongoing learning, reflection, and refining what we study and what we teach.


Josey G. Fisher

Holocaust Education Consultant






Saint Joseph's University, Institute for Jewish-Catholic Relations


"Learning in the Presence of the Other: Deepening the Dialogue between Jews and Catholics" with Mary C. Boys and Sara S. Lee 

Thursday, February 26, 7-9 PM

Teletorium, Mandeville Hall  


Examination of respectful interfaith dialogue while confronting painful historical conflicts.  For more information, click here. 


Spring 2015 Series:

"Israel and Contemporary Jewish-Christian Relations"

Tuesdays, April 15, 22, and 29, 7-9 PM

Haub Executive Suite, Large Lapsley Room, McShain Hall


Three-part series of interfaith dialogues exploring constructive ways of approaching diverse viewpoints and complex discussion regarding the Land and State of Israel. Registration required. Further information tba under "Coming Events."  Click here for homepage. 



45th Annual Scholars' Conference on the Holocaust and the Churches


"From Living Memory to History: The Franklin H. Littell Archives and the Next Generation of Scholars"

Temple University, Philadelphia

March 14-16  


For further information, click here.  



ADL's Walk Against Hate


Sunday, May 17, 1:00-4:00 PM

Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive, Philadelphia  


For further information and registration, click here.  



Educator Trip to the U.S.Holocaust Memorial Museum

Thursday, June 27

Co-sponsored by Holocaust Awareness and Education Center, Gratz College, and JCRC


For further details and registration, contact Phil Holtje or 215-464-4701




The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum:






The Holocaust in Ukraine  









 Alerting the World: Jan Karski








The Holocaust in Hungary 








Holocaust Educational Trust of the UK



70 Voices: Victims, Perpetrators and Bystanders 

features new material daily through the April commemorative days from poems, diaries and writings of the victims, survivors, perpetrators, and other witnesses.   




Yad Vashem: 












Lodz: A Topography of Life and Death in the Ghetto 70 Years After Its Liberation




"Using Social Media in Holocaust Education,"
developed and approved by International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance, December 2014 meetings, Manchester, UK. Click on "Educate" tab, then "Teaching Guidelines" and scroll down. Click here for home page. 



The Fate of European Roma and Sinti During the Holocaust



The Roma in Auschwitz Concentration Camp 





Gratz College Summer Institute  

July 12-17: Children of the Nazi Era with Josey G. Fisher

July 19-24: The Holocaust and Genocide in Film with Michael Steinlauf

Melrose Park, PA


For further information, additional online summer courses (May 26-July 27), and registration contact Mindy Blechman. 



Holocaust and Jewish Resistance Teacher's Program

June 30-July 14  

Application deadline: March 20


Intensive program for secondary school teachers, visiting historic sites, museums and memorials in Germany and Poland, with presentations by survivors, scholars and senior educators. Sponsored by the American Gathering of Jewish Holocaust Survivors and Their Descendants.


Further information and application. 



2015 Arthur and Rochelle Belfer National Conference for Educators

English Language Arts Section: July 12-14

Social Studies Section: July 15-17


For middle and high school teachers and community college faculty

Further information and online registration.



Jan Karski Instititute for Holocaust Education: Summer Certificate Program for Educators

July 12-18

Application deadline: April 19


For high school teachers, held on campus of Georgetown University, Washington, DC, taught by Georgetown faculty and broad range of guest lecturers, including access to museums and government agencies. Fulfills state requirements for public, private and parochial schools and provides Certificate in Holocaust and Genocide Studies. Competitive admission.  

Details and application.



Bearing Witness

Paoli, PA

July 29-August 31

Application deadline: March 30


Residential professional development program for Catholic-school educators, grades 6-12, focusing on the history of Catholic-Jewish relations and the Holocaust. Co-sponsored by the ADL and the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.


For further information, contact  Dr. Carol Cary at the Office of Catholic Education or Randi Boyette at ADL.   




Night Will Fall.  Award-winning documentary by André Singer recounts the full story of the video record of the Allied liberation of the camps. The original film, a project of Britain's army film unit, under Sidney Bernstein in collaboration with Alfred Hitchcock, was left incomplete and shelved, issued only in part as Frontline's Memory of the Camps in 1985.
This new documentary tells the full story of the original project. 75 minutes. Graphic imagery. DVD available through Amazon UK, Feb. 2015. Advanced students. 


Watchers of the Sky. 2014 Sundance Documentary winning film, inspired by Samantha Power's 2003 Pulitzer Prize winning book A Problem from Hell: America and the Age of Genocide. Examines the life and legacy of Raphael Lemkin, the Polish-Jewish lawyer and linguist who coined the term "genocide," setting the stage for the UN Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of Genocide and the creation of the International Criminal Court. Interviews alternate with rare archival footage and animation. Further historical commentary, timeline and request for educational materials.



Through the Eye of the Needle - The Art of Esther Nisenthal Krinitz. Award-winning documentary presents a Holocaust survivor's remembrances through her beautifully stitched images and vivid accounts of her journey, as recounted in her 2005 memoir Memories of Survival. 30 minutes. Middle school and above. Available on YouTube  



Finding a Voice: Musicians in Terezín.

Extensive curriculum guide accompanies this CD with musical works by Hans Krasa, Gideon Klein, Viktor Ullmann, and Pavel Haas. Produced by Terezín Music Foundation with Facing History and Ourselves.




National Days of Remembrance 
April 12 - 19 

Yom HaShoah is observed from the evening of  
April 15
through the evening of Thursday,
April 16

Greater Philadelphia Holocaust Memorial Ceremony 

1:00 PM  

Sunday, April 19

16th and the Parkway


 "Dorothy Freedman Memorial Conversation with a Survivor"

Breakfast program for middle and high school students will precede the Ceremony,  

from 10:00 AM - 12:30 PM 

Sunday, April 19

Moore College of  

Art and Design

JCRC Programs  


Youth Symposium on the Holocaust for Grades 9-12


One-day program for public, parochial and private high school students throughout the Delaware Valley, co-sponsored by JCRC and the Archdiocese of Philadelphia. Includes film, keynote and small-group dialogue with Holocaust survivors as well as professional development session for educators with Echoes and Reflections curriculum.


Registration deadline: Wednesday, February 18


Tuesday, March 10

Saint Joseph's University

Philadelphia, PA


Thursday, March 12

West Chester University

West Chester, PA


Tuesday, March 24

Gratz College

Melrose Park, PA


Week of March 15 -  

Bucks County location tba


For registration and details, click here or contact Beth Razin, 215-832-0536. 





Mordechai Anielewicz Creative Arts Competition

for Grades 7-12


Opportunity for middle and high school students from public, parochial and private schools throughout the region to respond to the lessons of the Holocaust and the related issues of ethnic, racial and religious intolerance through creative expression. 


Deadline:  Friday, March 6


Submit all entries to:

Jewish Community Relations Council

2100 Arch Street

Philadelphia, PA 19103 


For details, online entry forms, guidelines and resources, click here



Award Ceremony: Monday, June 1


Exhibition of Visual Entries:

May 28- June 11


Moore College of Art and Design

20th Street and the Parkway



For further information on these community programs, information regarding all JCRC Holocaust programs, and for requests for speakers, contact Beth Razin, 215-832-0536.

For Holocaust Education consultation, contact Josey G. Fisher.   



Suggested Books for Students in Middle School and Above 

A Bag of Marbles: The Graphic Novel by Joseph Joffo and Vincent Bailly, Graphic Universe, 2013. Adaptation of Joffo's 1973 memoir, a true account of Jewish brothers' dangerous escape from Occupied France to the Free Zone, hiding their identity, evading security forces, determining whom to trust.


Jan Karski Graphic Novel

by Jerzy Porebski, illustrated by Ewa Labaj, Washington, DC: The Jan Karski Institute, 2014. Biography of the famed courier for the Polish underground, who alerted world leaders to plans for the genocide based on eye-witness testimony.



Terezin: a Story of the Holocaust by Ruth Thompson, Franklin Watts Ltd, 2013.  An accessible description of life in Terezin using primary sources - interweaving artwork and diaries of the time - supplemented by excerpts of memoirs and oral testimony of Terezin survivors.


The War Within These Walls

by Aline Sax, Eerdmans Books for Young Readers, 2013.


A Batchelder Honor Book.  The nightmarish existence in the Warsaw Ghetto is told from the perspective of a Jewish teen who eventually joins the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising.    


Suggested Books for Advanced Students


God, Faith & Identity from the Ashes: Reflections of Children and Grandchildren of Holocaust Survivors, Ed. Menachem Z. Rosensaft, Jewish Lights Publishing: 2014.  Descendants of Holocaust survivors from 16 different countries reflect on how memories transmitted to them have affected their lives.


Shot by Shot: The Holocaust in German-Occupied Soviet Territory, an eBook by Joshua Rubenstein, available through Facing History and Ourselves. Primary sources including reports from German officers, period newspaper articles, print and video interviews with Jewish survivors combine to document the massacre of civilians following the June 1941 German invasion of the Soviet Union.


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2100 Arch Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103