Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Holocaust Memorial Service

Jamie Berry
Orange County Schools


Students pay tribute to holocaust victims through an art form, showing the students' empathy and victims' suffering.


The student writes fluently for a variety of occasions, audiences, and purposes, making appropriate choices regarding style, tone, level of detail, and organization.

The student evaluates conflicting sources and materials in the interpretation of a historical event or episode.


-Paper for poems
-Paint brushes
-An example of what you will be looking for.
-Text book
-Holocaust books
-Websites (see Weblinks section)


1. Decide how you would like to introduce the lesson.
2. Take out needed art supplies. (See Materials.)
3. Find appropriate holocaust books.
4. Prepare an example to share.
5. Have procedures listed on overhead or on chalk board.
6. Have a due date for when students perform.


Note: Students should have completed a study of the Holocaust and also be familiar with how to research.

1. Introduce lesson to students. Explain that this is a serious project and why. Explain that they will be expected to be respectful with their presentations.

2. Have art supplies and materials in an accessible area.

3. Write project choices (i.e., short story, poem, song, etc.) on board or on overhead.

4. Give them a performance date in which the project should be completed and share the criteria in the associated file with them.

5. Explain that the style and tone of their voice or the mood of their writing should be appropriate to the audience and topic. Also present two or more conflicting views from sources and discuss why different views are presented. Remind students that documents are often written from the perspective of the author, as are pictures, videos, etc. Help students to see that sometimes research should include opinions as well as facts. Remind students that conflicting facts can often be verified using a third, reliable source. Brainstorm for reliable sources that can be used and list those on the board as a reminder.

6. Break students into groups or let them choose their own groups.

7. When the students are grouped, first they are to decide in what way they would like to pay tribute from the choices given by the instructor.

8. Have them choose a specific period, region, person, group of people, etc., to center their project around. Share Websites with students to use for research. (See Weblinks.)

9. Students work together to create their projects. While they are in groups they will be putting together their projects, ie. writing individual short story, poem, creating a song or creating a memorial service with individual written pieces. They can bring in or create props to help with the mood of the presentation. Remind students to keep all research in a folder or central place so that they can document their choices in their pieces and presentations. Ask students to note which sources and information present conflicting views. (Have students put a red checkmark beside conflicting views, facts, happenings, pictures, etc.)

10. Students perform or display their projects. Collect individual written pieces and folders with research for assessment.


This activity is assessed through observation, which will focus on the students' use of class time for research and their presentation, as well as the written piece. The assessment instrument is in a checklist format. (See Associated file.) Offer feedback and guidance when assessing the research folder, especially in the area of conflicting information in sources and research.


There are so many ways you can extend this lesson. You could possibly check out a holocaust survivor video from the media center to show to the class. You could have the students write journals as if they were in hiding from the Germans, or pretend to be one of the people hiding the Jews from the Germans. They could share journal entries with the class or hand in as a separate assignment.

Web Links

Web supplement for Holocaust Memorial Service
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

Web supplement for Holocaust Memorial Service

Web supplement for Holocaust Memorial Service
Jewish Virtual Library

Web supplement for Holocaust Memorial Service

Attached Files

Assessment tool for holocaust.     File Extension: pdf

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