Who Should Attend
Holocaust education begins around middle school ages*. All children should have had some preparation either at school or by their parents prior to entering this exhibit. In an effort to keep the exhibit inclusive and appropriate for all ages, exposed visuals are limited to those that are the least graphic in their horrific nature, but still convey the indignity of the situation the prisoners found themselves in. When possible logistically, stations 6-7 are kept somewhat hidden in the exhibit design so young children can be led into the rest of the exhibit without dwelling on the darkest side of the Holocaust.
- K-2nd: Young students should visit the museum from the perspective of the children's reading corner. They can be exposed to an age appropriate Holocaust story in this area, talk about the values of acceptance, compassion, tolerance and being an upstander. They can gain an appreciation from being in the space without actually being exposed to the detailed history in the rest of the exhibit. Some parents have chosen to bring their children into the full exhibit experience - please be prepared to discuss your child's questions appropriately.
- 3rd-5th: Students are ready to be given some historical context as a springboard to further discussing the results of prejudice, and learning from mistakes made in history. At the exhibit itself, teachers/parents can use the vocabulary guide available for students to use which can be tailored to the concepts to be covered.
- Middle School and High School: The museum can be an essential element for students studying the Holocaust, genocide and/or tolerance. Teachers who visit the museum in advance can find many ways to incorporate the stations into their curriculum. Students for whom the museum might be their only curricular exposure can use either the Basic or Advanced 'answer hunt' as a way to help them focus on particular concepts and ideas.
- Religious groups: The museum can be hosted/visited by religious groups to help with their focus on strengthening the human virtues of acceptance, compassion, and tolerance.
- Adults: Whether one has studied the Holocaust in the past or not, this museum explores many facets and adults are sure to learn something new. There are many survivor stories and testimonials as well.
- Families: Depending on the ages of the children in the family*, all families should make it a priority to know Holocaust history and to make TACT a part of life.
- Educators/Teachers: The exhibit is an important enhancement to any curriculum that teaches about the Holocaust, and the ramifications of intolerance. Use the exhibit to promote Act with TACT.
*I believe that children should be exposed to some aspects of the Holocaust earlier than middle school. Young children should learn the ideas of acceptance, compassion, tolerance, community building, and being an upstander when a wrong is being done (such as bullying). Understanding that we can learn from the mistakes others made in the past is another concept that will enhance Holocaust learning readiness. By 3rd- 4th grade, children can start to understand historical contexts and a general overview of the basic timeline of the Holocaust; including the cascading results of intolerance described in stations 3-6. It is highly likely that especially Jewish children, will encounter something to do with the Holocaust well before middle school and its best that its presented to them in an age appropriate way as they grow, rather than finding out about it in a sudden, haphazard way. Children should develop an awareness of their heritage as they grow (both positive and negative) - the Holocaust is now an inextricable part certainly of Jewish culture because it has changed and colored the Jewish genealogical & geographic landscape significantly. Just as Israeli children learn at an early age to stand at attention during the wailing remembrance sirens on Holocaust Remembrance Day (as well as Israel's Memorial Day), children in the diaspora can grasp the need to honor and remember those who disappeared from their family trees as well as the human values needed to prevent a repeat occurrence.
- Iris Bendahan