Creating an Interactive (and Engaging) Classroom for Effective Behavior Management

Creating an Interactive (and Engaging) Classroom for Effective Behavior Management


Middle and high school teachers often state that their greatest challenge is finding effective classroom management strategies. Classroom management is usually taught in education preparation programs, but it is skimmed over or introduced from older manuals and programs that worked with students from previous generations. Our current students require newer and more effective strategies that deal with the world we live in today.
Middle and high school teachers often state that their greatest challenge is finding effective classroom management strategies. Classroom management is usually taught in education preparation programs, but it is skimmed over or introduced from older manuals and programs that worked with students from previous generations. Our current students require newer and more effective strategies that deal with the world we live in today. #teachingstrategies #classroommanagement #teachinghighschool #teachingmiddleschool

Classroom Management Does NOT Stand-Alone

Older methods of classroom management rely on checklists, call words, or calendars that responded to inappropriate behaviors. They are reactionary strategies. These no longer work effectively and often require more time and training than they are worth.

In addition to the ineffectiveness of stand-alone programs, these strategies often ask teachers to step away from teaching their content to teach appropriate behaviors or to implement appropriate responses to negative student interactions. In classrooms where time is already short for ever-growing curriculum standards, taking time out for interruptions is not effective.

Interactive and Engaging Classrooms

One of the best pieces of advice given by more experienced teachers is to keep your students busy. When your students are busy, they have less time to find trouble. This is very true, but the method in which you keep students busy is the key.

Text-reading, repetitive desk work, or even online activities that do not draw student interest can lead to student boredom and a lack of engagement.

An Interactive Classroom is NOT (solely):
Using Internet Resources
Using an Interactive Notebook format
Using Google Drive or Google Classroom

It is Interpersonal learning.

A truly interactive classroom is ACTIVE! It involves students being up and moving around the room. Students are talking and interacting with one another. They are practicing skills like inquiry, investigation, and analysis. And they are working cooperatively to solve problems.
A truly interactive classroom is ACTIVE! It involves students being up and moving around the room. Students are talking and interacting with one another. They are practicing skills like inquiry, investigation, and analysis. And they are working cooperatively to solve problems. #interactivestrategies #teachingtips

A truly interactive classroom is ACTIVE! It involves students being up and moving around the room. Students are talking and interacting with one another. They are practicing skills like inquiry, investigation, and analysis. And they are working cooperatively to solve problems. #interactivestrategies #teachingtips

Creating an Interactive Classroom

Creating an interactive classroom does not have to be a separate practice from lesson planning or mapping out your curriculum. Interactivity can even be utilized when using more traditional resources or with tech-based programs. It simply requires movement and interaction.

Seating

Start by changing up your seating. Move desks into groups or pair of student desks for easier collaboration. If you can move to flexible seating, you can strategically create options for rewarding students simply by offering a seat change. And if all else fails, remove the desks from your classroom. It may sound crazy, but students love sitting on the floor and stretching out to work on assignments with one another. Invest in pillows or rugs and let the cooperation begin!

Grouping

Student grouping and collaboration is vital for an interactive classroom. When students are allowed to interact, they ask more questions, engage more in discussion, and think more critically about the content they are researching. While some will suggest mixed-ability grouping, varied grouping can be even more beneficial for all students. Change up the groups open and even allow student-chosen grouping from time to time.

Strategies

Any activity can be turned into an interactive lesson. Even text reading can evolve from an individual, silent activity to a collaborative, group exchange of reading and discussion. However, some strategies lend themselves to more effective collaboration and learning than others.

The Teacher's Role in an Interactive Classroom

Interactive classrooms do not only require student movement, but also teacher movement. Your role still requires teaching and direction-giving, but also involves movement around the room to guide students toward greater engagement and deeper thought. You will teach, facilitate, interact, guide, question, assess, offer feedback, and offer redirection. Steps in your instruction that have previously been done through paper exchange (grading) can now be done orally and within the process of active learning.

While creating an interactive classroom does require more planning and preparation, it will have an incredible payoff in your classroom. #interactiveclassroom
While creating an interactive classroom does require more planning and preparation, it will have an incredible payoff in your classroom. You will find that your students are more engaged, interested in the content, and willing to participate. In turn, this will create better learning and less behavior issues. Your classroom management will be taken care of by your new classroom instruction strategies.

Happy Teaching!




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Brittany Cloyd
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I Have a Dream: Teaching Unity for Martin Luther King Day and Black History Month

I Have a Dream: Teaching Unity for Martin Luther King Day and Black History Month


Over five decades ago, the inspiring Martin Luther King, Jr., summed up our purpose as teachers.
"The function of education is to teach one to think intensively and to think critically. Intelligence plus character – that is the goal of true education.” 

While the politics of our public school system may challenge this sentiment daily, we as teachers know the true motivation beyond our dedication. We hope to leave each student better than before they crossed the threshold of our classroom.  Our goal is to foster intelligence plus character in our young students.

Each year as our country celebrates Martin Luther King Day in January and then continues the conversation with Black History Month in February, we often wish to incorporate the history behind the celebrations into our lesson plans. Though I encourage you to include this in your lessons every day (as well as teaching about other cultures and contributors to history), I think this time can be very instrumental in driving the conversation in our classrooms toward a message of love and unity. 

While working to advance civil rights in the late 1950s and 1960s, Martin Luther King Jr. spoke out about using a nonviolent approach and civil disobedience to disrupt the system that was failing people of color. Surrounded by hatred and violence, MLK chose a message of love instead.
"Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that."
As modern day teachers, we often get bogged down by the sheer volume of curriculum that should be covered in the course of a school year. Drowning in lesson plans, we may stray from the idea that our lessons should be laced with more than content; we should be teaching love, unity, and compassion to tomorrow's leaders. 
Each year as our country celebrates Martin Luther King Day in January and then continues the conversation with Black History Month in February, we often wish to incorporate the history behind the celebrations into our lesson plans. Though I encourage you to include this in your lessons every day (as well as teaching about other cultures and contributors to history), I think this time can be very instrumental in driving the conversation in our classrooms toward a message of love and unity. #mlk #martinlutherking #blackhistory #love #unity #united #socialstudies
In fact, even the name of the discipline, Social Studies, lends to teaching beyond the history book. Social Studies teachers have an obligation to teach the interactions and characteristics of the human race. By glossing over this important holiday (and upcoming Black History Month) by sticking to the history, we may be doing a great disservice to our classrooms of tiny humans. 

You can empower your students by helping them to find commonalities and similarities by providing a united classroom community and a safe space to embrace differences. 
“We may have all come on different ships, but we’re in the same boat now.”
There are so many great lesson plans and activities to incorporate in your lesson planning for January and February, and beyond. Try some of the following activities to celebrate Martin Luther King Day or the upcoming Black History Month.  

Martin Luther King Walking Tour
Try this non-traditional activity to get students moving and thinking. Engage students in a real-life scavenger hunt to collect clues about Martin Luther King, Jr., his life, and his contributions. 

Digital 1:1 Martin Luther King Activity
Looking for something more 1:1? This activity allows students to work independently to uncover important facts about Martin Luther King, Jr. and his work.

Quick Quotes Activity
This one-day activity explores Martin Luther King, Jr.'s own spoken words, analyzing his different political causes with quotes on varying topics.

"I Have a Dream" Speech Primary Source Analysis
Want to explore MLK from a literary perspective? This primary source analysis breaks down Martin Luther King, Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech.

Significant Contributions of African Americans
Continue your teaching into Black History Month with this centers activity, meant to discuss significant contributions of African Americans.

FREE! Significant African Americans Quote Analysis
Dive deeper into the contributions of significant African Americans by analyzing quotes in this free activity!

No matter which activities you choose to incorporate in your upcoming lessons, remember the important reason for teaching these sensitive lessons. Remind yourself, as well as your students, that even the smallest step toward progress is indeed progress.
“If I cannot do great things, I can do small things in a great way.”
By teaching these difficult lessons to the impressionable young minds in your classroom, you may make a bigger impact than is conceivable. Continue to build a strong classroom community of open-minded, compassionate humans, and you will be successful in teaching. #teaching #socialstudies #students #history
By teaching these difficult lessons to the impressionable young minds in your classroom, you may make a bigger impact than is conceivable. Continue to build a strong classroom community of open-minded, compassionate humans, and you will be successful in teaching.

Happy Teaching!






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Brittany Cloyd
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Drawing Games in the Classroom: Themed Variations on the Urban Game

Drawing Games in the Classroom: Themed Variations on the Urban Game


You've likely heard of the Urban Game that is spreading like wildfire. An interesting exercise for secondary Social Studies classes, the teacher rapidly instructs students to modify a big paper drawing of an urban city. At the end of the exercise, students can make comparisons and draw parallels to the challenges faced by urbanization of their city.
You've likely heard of the Urban Game that is spreading like wildfire. An interesting exercise for secondary Social Studies classes, the teacher rapidly instructs students to modify a big paper drawing of an urban city. At the end of the exercise, students can make comparisons and draw parallels to the challenges faced by urbanization of their city. #urbangame #socialstudies #lessonplanning #bigpaperactivity

The Urban Game is great in the classroom because it allows students to step outside the box and tap into their right brains for artistic skills and inspired creativity. Students have to turn on their listening ears, block out distractions, and work collaboratively to accomplish the assignment. In my previous post, Teamwork and Collaboration in the Classroom: An Exercise to Assess Direction Following, I introduced the American Revolution Drawing Game, a spin-off of the Urban Game meant to walk students through the booming revolution, one advancement (or setback) at a time.

But this drawing game has value outside your unit on the American Revolution, too. There are so many ways to modify the Drawing Game to study different time periods, units, and regional differences.

You can introduce your unit on Westward Expansion with the Westward Expansion Drawing Game. Covering the Transcontinental Railroad, immigration, Chinese Railroad Workers, the California Gold Rush, the Pony Express, the Oregon Trail, the Louisiana Purchase, and more, this Drawing Game can introduce students to the Expansion of America in a fun and engaging way.

Students can also dive into the American Civil War Drawing Game, where they'll discover Slavery in the US, the Abolition Movement, the Missouri Compromise, Harriet Tubman & the Underground Railroad, Fort Sumter, the Battles of Big Run and Gettysburg, the Emancipation Proclamation, and more.

The Immigration into America: 1850 to 1910 Drawing Game covers the Gilded Age through the lenses of immigration, urbanization, overcrowding, factories and employment, Ellis Island, population differences, and more.
If you choose to do the Drawing Games in small groups, students can also benefit greatly as they develop their communication and collaboration skills, fostering a solid classroom community. #groupwork #collaboration #teamwork
Each Drawing Game activity includes the teacher script, a sample image of a completed map, debriefing notes, and suggested follow-up questions and activities. By participating, students practice listening skills, mapping, designing a key, following directions, time-lining, critical thinking, and inquiry. If you choose to do the Drawing Games in small groups, students can also benefit greatly as they develop their communication and collaboration skills, fostering a solid classroom community.

Drawing Games not only inspire your students and force them to look at the topic through a different lens, but they're also fun and engaging! #lessonplanning #unitplanning #funforteachers #funlessons #funactivitiesDrawing Games not only inspire your students and force them to look at the topic through a different lens, but they're also fun and engaging! Since they're so abstract, students may enjoy participating in the downtime before a break, or in a low-stress activity right after an extended holiday! These activities are great as introductions to a unit, or as reflection activities after you've already delved into study.

More Drawing Games are coming soon. What topic or theme would you like to see in a future Drawing Game?

Happy Teaching DRAWING!


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Michele Luck
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Teamwork and Collaboration in the Classroom: An Exercise to Assess Direction Following

Teamwork and Collaboration in the Classroom: An Exercise to Assess Direction Following


How do you feel when a hundred different directions are thrown your way? Maybe your principal comes into your classroom after a stressful class period, listing off five things to-do within the next week? Or a student asks questions about an upcoming assignment, in rapid-fire succession? Or even in your personal life, a significant other lists off the grocery list quickly and without repetition, leaving you scrambling to capture the necessities on a scrap piece of paper?
Our brains are hard-wired for processing, and our students spend much time in elementary, middle, and high school developing and improving upon these processing skills. However, we often enjoy the luxury of slowing things down, repeating them, rereading them, or asking for clarification. If this luxury is taken away, our brains overload and our sympathetic nervous system switches on. We are no longer processing information thoroughly and effectively; we're simply cataloging and sorting as quickly as our brains are able, often missing key information. #processing #lessonplanning #processingskills #learningstyles #repetition

Our brains are hard-wired for processing, and our students spend much time in elementary, middle, and high school developing and improving upon these processing skills. However, we often enjoy the luxury of slowing things down, repeating them, rereading them, or asking for clarification. If this luxury is taken away, our brains overload and our sympathetic nervous system switches on. We are no longer processing information thoroughly and effectively; we're simply cataloging and sorting as quickly as our brains are able, often missing key information.

Now imagine if you put your significant other on speaker phone while he or she rattles off the grocery list. Your children each have a pen in hand, a notebook at the ready. Your youngest turns on a cell phone recording so you can double check their finished list. They capture the list without missing a single item, and one even doodles you a silly picture to enjoy while standing in the checkout line. Your sympathetic nervous system thanks you and goes back to sleep, having woken with a start when the phone rang. You may even feel a warm and fuzzy feeling that often escapes you - sometimes, we call that relaxed!

Your students function quite the same way. Throw a ton of information at them, and they'll shut down, experiencing an automatic overload of their brains! They probably won't retain or understand any of it. But, if you break things down into simpler terms, give explicit directions, and provide clarification, they're much more likely to absorb the information at hand.

Sometimes, though, it may be important to kick their sympathetic nervous systems into high gear because you're teaching them a hard-learned lesson.

A true Social Studies lesson is one that leaves an impact beyond that of a textbook quiz or multiple-choice standardized test. Impactful Social Studies lessons transport one's mind, but also one's heart. By enticing a fight or flight reaction from your students, they're likely to feel the impact of the lesson. #socialstudies #lessonplan #socialstudieslesson #teachingsocialstudies
For instance, imagine the year is 1760 and we are in the American colony of Massachusetts. The scene begins in the harbor city of Boston.

Immediately, your mind probably transports you elsewhere, and you hone in on your new location and era. However, you not only want your students to learn about a moment in history, but you want them to experience it. A true Social Studies lesson is one that leaves an impact beyond that of a textbook quiz or multiple-choice standardized test. Impactful Social Studies lessons transport one's mind, but also one's heart. By enticing a fight or flight reaction from your students, they're likely to feel the impact of the lesson.

Since this heightened sense of arousal clashes with the need to capture details and mass information, students may feel conflicted and check out. By employing the teamwork and collaboration of their classmates, just like the pencil-armed offspring in the earlier example, your students can work together to relieve the stress of the situation, adequately capturing the information at hand while still feeling the "stress" of the situation in which you've input them.

Now, it should be said that we don't want to intentionally stress our students out - at least, not regularly and not without a purpose. But, when teaching students about important historical events that have an emotional impact, a little fuel on the fire may inspire students to relate to the events on a deeper level. Also, they may understand the chaos or disorder felt by those who experienced the events firsthand. Bringing this aspect of stress into the classroom helps students to feel the dire situational stressors felt by those in wartime, in oppressed cultures, in less than desirable circumstances, in a way that they otherwise may overlook.

You can take your students to that harbor city in 1760 as well, walking them through the American Revolution with little direction. Forcing them to face the chaos and disorder of the economic developments, passed legislature, and even deaths during this brutal time. By instructing your students to work together in small groups of two or three, they can work on this big paper exercise with a small dose of that cortisol increase but also the collaboration of their classmates, testing their teamwork skills and how well they follow directions all at once. Students will understand, after the fact, why the lesson was presented in such a rushed manner. And hopefully, they'll take away a bit of that empathy within the lesson.

Try the American Revolution Drawing Game in your classroom for a multi-faceted lesson plan on the history of the American Revolution, teamwork and collaboration skills, and direction-following. #newteachers #teaching #teachinghistory #teachingamericanrevolution #americanrevolution
Try the American Revolution Drawing Game in your classroom for a multi-faceted lesson plan on the history of the American Revolution, teamwork and collaboration skills, and direction-following. You give rapid-fire verbal descriptors to your class, instructing them to capture the city of Boston on a freehand map, like the one pictured above - with no repeats or clarification! See how well they work together to test their listening and processing skills.

Happy Teaching!


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Brittany Cloyd
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How to Use Sticky Notes for Assessment

How to Use Sticky Notes for Assessment


Using sticky notes for assessment in the classroom may seem overly simple, but even first year secondary teachers are likely running out of fresh and exciting ideas for lesson planning. Instead of overthinking the next lesson or wracking your brain for new ideas, go back to the basics with sticky notes!
Using sticky notes for assessment in the classroom may seem overly simple, but even first year secondary teachers are likely running out of fresh and exciting ideas for lesson planning. Instead of overthinking the next lesson or wracking your brain for new ideas, go back to the basics with sticky notes! #stickynotes #interactivelessons #lessonplanning #visualteaching

Sticky notes are the perfect lesson companion for middle school and high school classes because they're inexpensive, you probably have a ton of them already lying around, and they are extremely versatile! Though it may seem like your options are limited with sticky notes, they really are limitless when it comes to "sticking" them into your lesson plans.

COLOR WARS. As sticky notes come in many different sizes and colors, they're innately ideal for comparing and contrasting, categorizing, or differentiating. You can use sticky notes of the same color or size to highlight similarities or group things by likeness. You can use differently-colored sticky notes to bring attention to differences or separate unlike items. By using them for the most basic of tasks, sticky notes can make the repetitive process of searching for comparative qualities easy and fun. Students could even compile their sticky notes onto a large big paper Venn Diagram or other group response display.

BIG IDEAS, SMALL SPACE. You can also use sticky notes to make a large, daunting assignment seem quick and easy, lessening anxiety among your students. Assigning an opinion writing prompt or response group activity may illicit groans from your class, but reinforcing that students focus on the important ideas by limiting their response to the small three-by-three square may ease the stress.

STICK TO EXIT. Instead of having students log their exit slip in their overflowing Interactive Notebooks, offer them reprieve from the three-ring binder by passing out sticky notes for exit slips. Students can stick their responses to the white board on the way out.

ANONYMOUS NOTES. Students could orchestrate a debate by anonymously picking a side and then writing out their evidence, support, or opinion. Have students draw someone else's sticky note from a jar or hat to present an anonymous opinion to the class as part of a structured debate or lighthearted discussion group.

MATCHING GAME. Use sticky notes to match data points, such as populations of countries. Label large paper with country names and fill out that county's statistics on each sticky note (i.e. sticky notes would hold population, primary language, life expectancy, etc.). For even more depth, have students use one color for all similar statistics (i.e. all population data is on a pink sticky note) so that when they compare countries against each other, they can easily compare related data. Alternatively, put all statistics from one region on one color of sticky notes and then have students identify which country matches their results!

MAP PINS. Instead of the traditional pushpin-on-map dynamic, switch it up with sticky notes! Have students label a post-it note with a country, region, state, etc., and stick it to the correct area on a large classroom map. Collectively, they can label a whole continent or region with everyone's sticky notes. Use this activity with the complete Geography Introduction Unit which details the five themes of geography!

BAR GRAPH REPRESENTATION. While recording classroom data for comparison in a government or economics class, have students stack their sticky notes up the wall or board to form a bar graph, ensuring that your graph will show an accurate representation since each student's sticky note is the same size. Use different color sticky notes to add additional dynamics to your data collection. For example, in a blended class, Freshman can use one color to record their favorite subject, and Sophomores can use a different color. Then, draw conclusions about each based on the data trajectory.

SHORT STUDY GUIDE. Allow your students a small reprieve from the stress of your next exam by giving them one sticky note for a cheat sheet. Better than an open book test, students will still have to study the information to find the most important bits to record on their small slip of paper.

TASK CARDS. Have students use sticky notes to flag important information on Gallery Walks like this Roaring 20s Walking Tour, where information is distributed around the room. Or, allow them to collect important information on sticky notes to organize their thoughts as they visit each walking tour stop.

Bonus Teacher Tip!
DISCOURAGE CHEATING. This one is more of a teacher tip than a specific exercise in itself, but if you find your classroom full of wandering eyes, read quiz questions aloud and have students record their multiple choice answers on a sticky note. With only a sticky note on their empty desk, you will be able to quickly scout out anyone who is using extra resources to answer the questions!


Ditch the complicated lessons for your next unit and replace your difficult plans with easy sticky note activities! Or, use sticky notes to replace a daily activity that you can utilize throughout the year (like the exit slip idea). Either way, let your middle school and high school students use this commonly-overlooked office supply to amplify their lessons and inspire their creativity and curiosity! #teaching #lessonplanning #lessonideas #outsidetheboxteaching
Ditch the complicated lessons for your next unit and replace your difficult plans with easy sticky note activities! Or, use sticky notes to replace a daily activity that you can utilize throughout the year (like the exit slip idea). Either way, let your middle school and high school students use this commonly-overlooked office supply to amplify their lessons and inspire their creativity and curiosity!

Happy Teaching,

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Michele Luck
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9 Must-Read Books to Accompany Your Holocaust Unit

9 Must-Read Books to Accompany Your Holocaust Unit


As with teaching all sensitive or controversial Social Studies topics, you may feel less than comfortable teaching about the Holocaust. However, teaching about World War II and the Holocaust with confidence and professionalism is critical to ensuring that your students take the topic seriously and understand the importance of the lessons they are learning. Even though you are a Social Studies teacher, perhaps even a seasoned secondary teacher with many years of experience and education, you may feel less than equipped to handle the delicacies of the Holocaust.

As with teaching all sensitive or controversial Social Studies topics, you may feel less than comfortable teaching about the Holocaust. However, teaching about World War II and the Holocaust with confidence and professionalism is critical to ensuring that your students take the topic seriously and understand the importance of the lessons they are learning. Even though you are a Social Studies teacher, perhaps even a seasoned secondary teacher with many years of experience and education, you may feel less than equipped to handle the delicacies of the Holocaust. #Holocaust #teachingtheHolocaust #WorldHistory #WorldHistoryTeachers


Put frankly, this dark time period in our world’s history was a time of conviction of strongly-held beliefs, a time period which left many human beings fighting for the right to live. Many lives were lost due to these convictions. You may wonder what makes you an appropriate authority to speak on such grave historical topics.

Often, when we feel poorly equipped to teach a certain lesson, especially one with this strong of a worldwide impact, we may feel that we are not the right spokesperson to broadcast the much-needed message at hand. In many cases, we may be right! As Social Studies teachers, and secondary teachers in general, we may be the proverbial mouthpiece - the amplifying microphone - to disseminate historical information, but we may not be able to speak from our personal experiences, from a persecuted person’s perspective. Using books authored by those who did face certain atrocities firsthand may feel more sincere, genuine, and accurate.

In my secondary classroom, I used books of all reading levels to accompany my World History and US History lessons. My middle school and high school students deeply enjoyed folding to a comfortable cross-legged position on a carpet square, transfixed by the bright colors and impeccable rhymes of Dr. Seuss. They also fixed their attention on the words of literary texts beyond their reading level, scrutinizing with the tools we used when analyzing historical documents. Reading fiction and non-fiction books of all levels, my secondary students often held tightly to every word.

Though I love teaching about the Holocaust feel adequately prepared in my lesson planning and my continued education about the subject, and believe that I have equipped myself with the knowledge and tools to share the history of this time period, doing it justice, I also understand that I am not and cannot be an authority on the Holocaust, at least not in the same plane as someone who lived through it - struggled to hide, to fight, to survive. They are the best witness to the times.

It is in these instances where I realize the power of text - the importance of using the actual words of those individuals who faced marginalization and fought so hard to live another day - in helping us to communicate this content.

Using books from Holocaust survivors, as well as accurate historical texts written about the times, I able to transport my students from my classroom to a concentration camp, a hidden cellar, a makeshift attic hiding place, to a world existing after the War ended. I can read true accounts of hiding, of horror, of the atrocities and crimes committed during the Holocaust, and I can introduce very real individuals behind the words we read. This not only helps my students to relate to the text in a more sincere, personal way, but also provides them an authoritarian voice on a subject that I feel only partially equipped to teach justly. Though there are many excellent books and resources to aid in teaching the Holocaust, these great books stand out as vital resources in the World History Classroom.

Using books from Holocaust survivors, as well as accurate historical texts written about the times, I able to transport my students from my classroom to a concentration camp, a hidden cellar, a makeshift attic hiding place, to a world existing after the War ended. I can read true accounts of hiding, of horror, of the atrocities and crimes committed during the Holocaust, and I can introduce very real individuals behind the words we read. This not only helps my students to relate to the text in a more sincere, personal way, but also provides them an authoritarian voice on a subject that I feel only partially equipped to teach justly. Though there are many excellent books and resources to aid in teaching the Holocaust, these great books stand out as vital resources in the World History Classroom. #Holocaustbooks #Holocaustsurvivors #WorldHistorybooks #teachingworldhistory #socialstudiesteacher

1. Night, Elie Wiesel

Bonus! Try this Night Reading Journal & Task Card Activity to accompany the reading of Elie Wiesel’s book.

Though I love teaching about the Holocaust feel adequately prepared in my lesson planning and my continued education about the subject, and believe that I have equipped myself with the knowledge and tools to share the history of this time period, doing it justice, I also understand that I am not and cannot be an authority on the Holocaust, at least not in the same plane as someone who lived through it - struggled to hide, to fight, to survive. They are the best witness to the times. #primarysource #teachingwithprimarysources #teachingsurvivorstories #holocaustsurvivors #livetotell

2. Survival in Auschwitz, Primo Levi

3. Escape from Sobibor, Richard Rashke

4. Hitler’s Willing Executioners: Ordinary Germans and the Holocaust, Daniel Jonah Goldhagen 

(This one is great for teaching how regular people could participate in the horrific acts like those of the Holocaust.)

5. Tell Them We Remember, Susan Bachrach

(This is a great visual tool with incredible stories!)

6. Schindler’s List, Thomas Keneally

7. Maus, Art Spiegelman 

(This book is excellent for lower level readers or readers who prefer graphic novels.)

8. Nuremberg Diary, G.M. Gilbert

9. The Poisonous Mushroom, Julius Streicher 

(Sadly, this book is out of print but you can find it online! Great children’s book to examine the use of German propaganda!)

Bonus! This Google Drive activity on The Poisonous Mushroom analyzes World War II propaganda.

To help you plan with these books and resources, consider implementing the Holocaust Unit planning guide found in the complete Holocaust Unit on TeachersPayTeachers!

By incorporating any (or all!) of these books into your unit on the Holocaust, you’ll not only have diverse primary sources for student study, but you’ll also have an authoritarian voice to help your students experience secondhand what happened during the Holocaust. #teachinghistory #teachingWorldWarII #teachingwithauthority #teachingwithconviction #teach
By incorporating any (or all!) of these books into your unit on the Holocaust, you’ll not only have diverse primary sources for student study, but you’ll also have an authoritarian voice to help your students experience secondhand what happened during the Holocaust.

Happy Teaching!

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Michele Luck
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