Challenging stereotypes and avoiding the superficial: a suggested approach to teaching the Holocaust


By Alison Kitson, published 31st August 2001

Alison Kitson provides a rationale for a scheme of work for Year 9 (13-14 year-olds). She argues that teachers should analyse the kind of historical learning that is taking place when the Holocaust is studied. Critical of the assumption that learning will take place as a result of exposure, she argues that teachers need to think about learning outcomes and to explore how these connect and support each other. She draws upon the types of historical thinking specified by the National Curriculum in England and shows how these can link up with areas of knowledge that pupils need if they are to understand the context of the Holocaust. Like Kate Hammond, she argues that emotional, human response and moral learning can and should be involved in teaching the Holocaust and that this can support – rather than detract from – rigorous historical analysis of sources and causes.

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