GISNY student book project about Holocaust survivors and liberators selected by German government
“What can we learn from the past?” is a question built into the German education system. In 2019, German schools around the world were challenged to tackle that question by developing remembrance projects focused on an issue of particular cultural, historical and geographic relevance.
German International School New York is proud that their book project about Holocaust survivors and liberators was one of those chosen for official support from the German government.
GISNY’s two 7th grade classes met and interviewed a number of Holocaust survivors and a liberator in the New York metropolitan area, and have turned what they heard into a bilingual book filled with a schoolchild’s understanding of the Holocaust. The book, “We Lived on Miracles,” features stories and texts in both German and English, and is accompanied by a short film for screening at GISNY as well as institutions and schools in the greater New York area.
The multimedia book, as well as the short films, were created in cooperation with two local Jewish organizations, the Holocaust & Human Rights Education Center and Congregation Emanu-El of Westchester, as well as with the Penguin Random House publishing house, the Goethe Institute, and the German Consulate General New York.
The book will be used at GISNY in various grades in the subjects of History, German, English, Ethics, and Religion. The book is also intended for reading hours, lectures, and exhibitions at various institutions and schools in the Westchester and NYC area.
German government support for remembrance projects such as “We Lived on Miracles” is the result of an initiative promoted by German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas, and carried out by the Foreign Office, the Central Agency for Schools Abroad, the Federal Agency for Civic Education, and the restitution foundation Remembrance, Responsibility and Future. The initiative aims to promote a modern culture of remembrance by relating issues of the past to the present.