Curriculum and Instruction

Social studies teacher and school leaders recently visited the Holocaust Museum & Center for Tolerance and Education at Rockland Community College. Formerly located in Spring Valley, the museum was relocated to RCC and took five years to create. Our District team spent the morning touring about the museum, discussing curriculum connections and planning for middle and high school field trips.

The museum’s mission is to educate the public about the dangers of intolerance, to invoke critical thinking and to inspire moral courage in the face of justice. Programs focus on the “Holocaust, genocide and grave human rights violations to promote visitors’ understanding of causes and consequences in an effort to prevent the foresight to prevent similar recurrences.” A presentation on the Holocaust emphasized that the genocide had begun with propaganda and hatred and ended with the killing of six million Jews, including 1.5 million children.

Teacher leaders from every grade level planned museum visits and/or opportunities to integrate what they learned into the social studies curriculum. “Moral courage,” the HMCTE’s theme this year, is also closely aligned with our District’s Character Education Program. Students will learn about four different groups of people during the Holocaust–Victims, Bystanders, Perpetrators and Rescuers/Upstanders–and make connections to our world today. Since the content on-site at HMCTE is geared for secondary students and adults, museum educators will visit elementary schools to provide age- and developmentally-appropriate instruction.

A special thank you to HMCTE Board Trustee and Educator Linda Suss, Executive Director Andrea Winograd and the museum staff for hosting our team for this valuable professional development experience.

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