9 class periods of 45 minutes each
'I hope one thing only, and that is that this hatred of the Jews will be a
passing thing, the Dutch will show what they are after all, and that they will
never totter and lose their sense of right. For anti-Semitism is unjust!'
--Anne Frank (May 22, 1944)
Students will identify personal biases and formulate a plan to 'make a difference.'
Read The Island of the Skog by Steven Kellogg aloud to the class and show students the illustrations.
See preface material from 'Anne Frank in the World, 1929 - 1945 Teacher Workbook.'
Divide the class into small groups and have students answer these questions (each group has a set of the questions and paper to record answers):
If students have time or want to expand the discussion, suggest these topics: fear, excuses or oppressive behavior, what it is like to be the 'new kid' in a group, or strategies people use for self-preservation/protection.
Have small groups report back to the class. Compile a list of prejudices and acts of discrimination from the answers to question e. Discuss the two types of discrimination, overt and subtle, to be sure students understand the difference.
Distribute writing materials and ask students to keep a log for the next two days. In this log, they should record every example of prejudice, racism, or other discrimination they observe in themselves or others, both in and outside of school. These observations may include events/scenes in the media. Students should label each observation as 'subtle' or 'overt' or they could record the two types in separate columns or on separate pages.
After students complete their logs, ask them to select one example of each type of discrimination and write a suggestion of how they or someone else might have intervened to stop each act of discrimination. If they observed or participated in such an intervention, encourage them to write about that, also.
Collect the logs after two days and discuss the students' reaction to the assignment. Are their logs longer or shorter than they thought they would be? Is the discrimination more likely to be subtle or overt? Are there ways that people can 'make a difference' and stop discrimination?
Closure: Have students compile a list of ways people can intervene to stop discrimination by sharing ideas from their logs. Post this list in the classroom; review it periodically and add new ideas.
Discuss the quote from Anne Frank.
Did Anne's hope come true?
Is anti-Semitism evident in the world today? In the U.S.? In South Dakota? In the local community, school, or class?
Have students develop their own 'picture book' or 'story board' about discrimination. Or students could draw a picture depicting discrimination and write or draw their feelings about the topic.
Have students continue their log activity either individually or as a class assignment with each student taking a given number of days or weeks. Analyze the results at the end of the year. Did discrimination increase or decrease? Were some days/weeks better than others? Can students suggest reasons why?
Have class members collect newspaper articles about acts of discrimination and place them in a scrapbook. Individual students could write comments on the scrapbook page that suggest possible interventions. Place this title on the front of the scrapbook: We WILL Make a Difference!
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum (, )