Orca Book Publishers

Browse by Category


Young People Respond to the Holocaust
Nonfiction Ages 9-12
Pages: 160
Themes: the Holocaust, racism, social justice
Publisher: Second Story Press
Pub Date: 01/Sep/2012
Bookmark and Share
Do young people today find meaning in the Holocaust? That’s the question that prompted a writing project across North America, Italy, and Australia asking young people to share their ideas about this time in history. Some students wrote short stories. Some discussed the impact of books they had read and wrote about the messages that they understood from these books. Several interviewed survivors and recorded their impressions. Many talked about how they have tried to make sense of this history in the world in which they now live. Others created works of art. Children wrote from their hearts with sensitivity, thoughtfulness, and great insight. Their teachers saw this opportunity as a gift, and it proves to all that young people can make a meaningful connection to the Holocaust. Their contributions give hope for a more peaceful and tolerant future.

The London Jewish Community News
On the back cover of the book the question “Do young people find meaning in the Holocaust?” is asked. This collection of writings, as well as all the other pieces submitted in response to the project, shows us emphatically that they most certainly do.
School Library Journal
At times, the students’ writings become historically impossible, but excellent editing points out the anachronisms and allows the synthesis of the time to be interesting rather than distracting...This is an innovative way to have young people process and respond to historical events.
Barbara Krasner, Association of Jewish Libraries, Reviews
The question, “Do young people find meaning in the Holocaust?” prompted a writing project in Canada, the United States, Australia, and Italy that generated responses from sixth, seventh, and eighth grade students, both Jewish and Gentile. In a collection of essays, stories, letters, poems, and drawings, they lend their voices in ways that go beyond expectations
Hadassah Magazine
The volume, edited by Kathy Kacer, describes the impact of the Holocaust on the lives of the children, each entry marked by a determination to speak for those whose voices were stilled and to confront a painful past with hope and compassion.
Marge McCormick, The Fall Book Review
These students' reactions help to make this piece of history come alive for young readers. Their interpretations may help other middle school students clarify their own understanding of the Holocaust, with the hope that history might never repeat itself.
The CJN
These child-authored stories are testimonies to the skill of each author to place himself or herself in the minds of Holocaust survivors.
Booklist
Journal entries, letters, drawings, and descriptive passages created by students throughout Canada, with some added entries from other countries as well, are brief but thoughtful, showing clarity of feeling and understanding of the role of memory in giving meaning to sacrificed lives.

Resources for Teachers:

Orca Book Publishers produces a number of tools and resources to help teachers, librarians, reading specialists and other education professionals enrich the teaching and learning experience.

Please visit our Teacher Resources page to access and download materials.

Classroom Materials:

Free Teacher Guides

Digital Subscriptions

Resource Websites

Research and Support Materials:

Common Core

Reading Levels