Educational Material "Video Testimonies for School Education"

Students' presentation about the biography of Helena Bohle-Szacki

Students' presentation about the biography of Helena Bohle-Szacki

Video-DVD with short films

Video-DVD with short films
Image Credit: Internet Archive "Forced Labor 1939-1945"

Learning software with timeline and animated maps

Learning software with timeline and animated maps
Image Credit: CeDiS / FUB click here

Biographical interviews can help to convey the history of National Socialism in a lively way. They can be used in a meaningful didactic way in everyday school life: The educational material (two-disc DVD with teachers’ book) promotes competence-oriented learning in the classroom, on school project days and in exam presentations. They can be purchased via the Federal Agency for Civic Education.

The preparation of the interviews for school and out-of school educational purposes was especially important for most witnesses. Many of them had never had the opportunity to tell about their experiences and until only recently, interested listeners. They went to great pains and often underwent re-traumatizing agony in taking part in a life story interview so that they could pass on their stories to future generations.

Therefore, an important part of the project is establishing didactic approaches to the interview collection. To this purpose, the educational materials "Video Testimonies for School Education: Video DVD – Learning Software – Teachers’ Book” have been developed by the Freie Universität.

Short Films

The life stories of former forced laborers take center stage. Five representatives from different victim groups tell about their experiences in camps and factories, the behavior of the Germans, and their experiences after returning home. Five video interviews from the online archive have been edited down to 25-minute biographical short films. Two background films provide information on forced labor and compensation as well as about the interview archive. All films were made by the historian Alexander von Plato an the film-maker Loretta Walz.

Titles of the seven films»

Media

The educational materials “Video Testimonies for School Education” include the following media:

  • Five survivors recount their experiences in camps and factories in a video DVD (to be shown in the classroom). Two background films provide information about forced labor and compensation as well as about the interview archive.
  • The second DVD contains a learning software (for project work in computer labs or for individual exam preparation). In addition to the seven films, it also includes interactive tasks and animated maps, timeline and lexicon, transcripts, documents and photos, informational texts and tips on methods of use.
  • A teachers’ book assists in preparation, providing informational texts, suggestions for tasks and worksheets.
  • The complete interviews as well as additional information and links are available in the online archive.

Use

The educational materials combine the vividness of filmed interviews with contemporary witnesses and the interactive nature of digital media. History education experts and teachers were significantly involved in the conceptualization of the materials. “Video Testimonies for School Education” is geared towards students from grade 9 and above but are also aimed at a general audience.

  • For different types of schools in all federal states (from 9th grade onwards)
  • Modules for classroom lessons, class project days and exam presentations
  • Interdisciplinary (incl. history, German, art)
  • Oriented towards educational standards and equipping students with competencies

School Projects

In the development of educational materials the Freie Universität Berlin cooperated with various schools. Students of the Sophie-Scholl-Schule tested the prototype of the interactive learning DVD at a creative workshop. A 10th grade class at the Hector-Peterson-Oberschule, a course at the Schadow-Gymnasium and a group at the Sportschule Potsdam discussed a biographical short film about a German Sinto’s experience of persecution and slave labor. The Babelsberger Filmgymnasium looked at three exemplary short biographies during a project week. An educational media project of ver.di Jugendbildungsstätte developped the documentary "Suche nach Erinnerung" with an interview from the archive. This practical experience in schools has influenced the further development of the materials. more»

Teacher Training

The educational materials were presented in January 2011 in a conversation with one of the survivors at the Jewish Museum Berlin and at various workshops and teacher training seminars in Warsaw, Braunschweig, Dresden, Celle, Prague and elsewhere. more»

If you are interested or would like further information, please contact Cord Pagenstecher, Freie Universität Berlin, e-mail: cord.pagenstecher@fu-berlin.de

Ordering

The educational materials “Video Testimonies for School Education: Video DVD – Learning Software – Teachers’ Book” are available through the Bundeszentrale für politische Bildung (Federal Agency for Civic Education) for 4.50 € / 1.- €.

Download Flyer

Please click here to download a German language flyer about our educational materials as a pdf file.

Further Learning Material

The DVD edition "Witnesses of the Shoah" ("Zeugen der Shoah") and its accompanying materials have been published in cooperation of Freie Universität Berlin and the Federal Agency for Civic Education.