Teaching the Holocaust Through Literature

Teaching the Holocaust Through Literature

Teaching the Holocaust Through Literature

How can literature be a window into how an individual’s life circumstances shape his or her identity? How do tragedy and trauma influence an individual’s identity and choices? In this workshop we will explore how Elie Wiesel and author, Danny Cohen, explore these questions through the particular lens of Night and Train.We will interweave literary analysis and relevant historical context and discuss how to bring this technique to the classroom.

This approach develops students’:

  • Literacy and historical analysis skills

  • Social-emotional competencies, particularly as they relate to perspective-taking and social and cultural awareness

  • Historical understanding


Danny Cohen’s young adult novel, Train, gives voice to the unheard victims of Nazism—the Roma, the disabled, intermarried Jews, homosexuals, and political enemies of the regime. These hidden stories bring another perspective than the acclaimed memoir of survivor Elie Wiesel and brings this history to younger students in a safe and engaging way.


Workshop participants will:

  • Learn a range of teaching strategies for helping students process emotionally powerful materials

  • Apply Facing History’s unique methodology to the study of Night in order to explore history and literature through themes of identity, “we and they,” choices, and civic participation

  • Experience classroom-ready multimedia tools and resources

Receive a hard copy of the Night study guide, including discussion questions, journal prompts, and writing assignments for exploring the text; activities for developing deeper understanding of the text and historical context; reproducible student handouts and primary sources; and links to related digital assets
Bernard Zell Anshe Emet
3751 N Broadway Street 60613
60613 Chicago
8:30 am - 3:30 pm
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