EMSB teachers take part in professional development session on Holocaust and genocide education

Montreal, December 8 , 2022-  The English Montreal School Board Educational Services Department organized a virtual lecture for teachers  by sharing Holocaust and genocide education best practices and addressing common misconceptions and myths that arise when teaching about this topic.

The program  was facilitated by Monique MacLeod, head of education for the Montreal Holocaust Museum. Its  goal was to build on this foundation by featuring two teaching tools that address the Holocaust, human rights and other genocides, so that teachers can connect their lesson plans t about genocide to the Holocaust and contemporary conflicts. This workshop also  included group work to sample some of the teaching tools and to brainstorm ways of integrating these materials into your lesson plans.

Ms. MacLeod, who is leaving her post in January and being replaced by Dominque Trudeau, gave an overview of the Museum’s mandate and activities.  Many EMSB schools have visited he Museum this year as part of the Holocaust Education Program and heard from survivors.

Here is a look at the two teaching tools:

The United Against Genocide: Understand, Question, Prevent Teaching Tool. This examines four genocides that marked history (the Armenian genocide, the Holocaust, the genocide in Cambodia, and the genocide of Tutsis in Rwanda). The activities included provide students with the opportunity to reflect on what genocide is, better understand the stages that lead to it, and learn about different means of resistance and intervention.

The Us vs. Them: Creating the Other Pedagogical Guide. Developed in collaboration with the Canadian Museum for Human Rights, explores the relationship between othering, human rights violations, and the process of genocide. Students analyse artefacts, timelines, and survivor testimonies from two case studies of genocide, one historical and one contemporary: the Holocaust and the Rohingya genocide in Myanmar. By reflecting on how the process of othering has been used by dominant groups to facilitate the exclusion of, discrimination against, and persecution of minority groups, students come to understand that genocide cannot take place without the initial step of othering.


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