This Toolkit is released as an online beta version. Teachers are invited to share their experiences in using this Toolkit by emailing one of the project contacts.

Teacher’s Toolbox

The Toolbox is providing teachers with concrete support material for their teaching and their project work.

SignPosts: Students Shaping Holocaust Memory

In preparation for International Holocaust Remembrance Day, annually marked on January 27th, Yad Vashem, together with the students of the Department of Graphic Design at the Neri Bloomfield Wizo Academy of Design in Haifa, developed the interdisciplinary project “Signposts: Students Shaping Memory”. 

This initiative was designed to generate dialogue about the Holocaust and its relevance for current and future generations through a series of thought-provoking postcards.

Objectives of the Signposts project are to:

  1. Foster Commemoration of International Holocaust Remembrance Day on January 27
  2. Create an educational process between students from Israel and abroad
  3. Facilitate an international dialogue about Holocaust consciousness
  4. Promote Holocaust awareness and universal, human values
  5. Examine connections between Holocaust education and Human Rights Education

For more information about the entire collection of postcards:

Over the past several years, the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights has included some of these postcards in its human rights awareness raising student diary, S’cool Agenda. Past and current issues of S’cool Agenda are available at:

SignPosts: Student ActivitiesIt Is Normal Not To Dream
The Preamble of the Convention on the Rights of the Child recognizes that:

“[…] the child, for the full and harmonious development of his or her personality, should grow up in a family environment, in an atmosphere of happiness, love and understanding”

The Article 27 of the Convention stipulates that:

States Parties recognize the right of every child to a standard of living adequate for the child's physical, mental, spiritual, moral and social development.

The Article 29 of the Convention stipulates that:

States Parties agree that the education of the child shall be directed to:

(a) The development of the child's personality, talents and mental and physical abilities to their fullest potential;

Discussion Questions and Activities:

  • After reading about the Convention on the Rights of the Child, how do you interpret the front of this postcard, “It Is Normal Not To Dream”?
  • What does it mean that “Sara Livsitz will never dream of becoming a little princess?”
  • Before bedtime, many parents wish their children, “sweet dreams.” Do you think that dreaming is a basic human right? Why or why not?
  • Go to and conduct research about the Livshitz family who once lived in Vinnitsa, today’s Ukraine.

One Life, One Suitcase

During the Holocaust, Jews were deported by Nazi Germany and their collaborators to extermination camps and were forced to take a limited amount of personal belongings in suitcases - labeled with their names – during their journey. Many Holocaust victims’ suitcases have been displayed at the Auschwitz-Birkenau State Museum in Poland,

Discussion Questions and Activities:

  • During the Holocaust, what dilemmas did Jewish people confront about what to pack in their suitcases before deportation?
  • Why did Nazi authorities force Jewish people to write their names on suitcases even though they knew that Jews would not have any need for them upon arrival at camps, such as Treblinka?
  • Go to and conduct research about Louis Swabe and Geertruida Feeler from the Netherlands by finding their Pages of Testimony in the Shoah Names Database and consult for additional information about the Holocaust in the Netherlands.


Bialystok, 1938

During the Holocaust, Jewish communities, that had been existence for centuries, and integrated within local communities, were destroyed. A large number of these Jewish communities throughout Europe still have not been rebuilt.  Their absence has irretrievably affected the way local communities life has evolved further.   

Discussion Questions and Activities:

  • Explain how you would use this postcard during an International Holocaust Remembrance Day ceremony.
  • Go to and conduct research about the pre-war Jewish community that lived in Bialystok, Poland


Piles of Eyeglasses

During the Holocaust, Jews were deported by the Nazi Germany and their collaborators to extermination camps. Six million Jewish people were dehumanized during the Holocaust, and all that remains are huge piles of eyeglasses, suitcases, human hair and shoes. The victims’ personal belongings, including eyeglasses, were sorted and shipped back to Nazi Germany- so that their property would be reused.

Discussion Questions and Activities:

  • What do you notice about the color of the paper of this postcard?
  • In small groups discuss the significance of the green symbol on the front of the postcard as well as the question posed by the graphic artist on the back.
  • Write a letter to the graphic artist who composed this postcard, describing your impressions and emotions as you look at it. Keep in mind that each pair of glasses represents an individual human being.
  • Conduct research on the Internet about the plundering of Jewish property during the Holocaust.  For example: or

Lesson Plan: The Children of the Holocaust” by Zsolt Urbancsok, Makó,HungaryZsolt Urbancsok, studied and was teacher at the Yad Vashem International School for Holocaust Studies. As an educational project he developed his own textbook, “The Children of the Holocaust”, geared for 13-18 year old students to learn about this historical era according to the pedagogical approach of the International School for Holocaust Studies at Yad Vashem.

In his book, Urbancsok focuses on four Hungarian-Jewish children who were born in Makó by contrast to the most textbooks with faceless, impersonal Jewish people. Each chapter opens with an overview of the historical context. With the personal stories Urbancsok follows a non-traditional form and method of learning.

This book’s purpose is to allow students to become acquainted with the processes of the Holocaust on the basis of personal testimonies, its operating mechanism and types of behavior (victim, perpetrator, bystander). They may learn about the consequences when a society rejects the moral values that make it a civilized one and people into human beings, i.e. tolerance, solidarity and the universal respect of human existence that is due to everyone, and that cannot be challenged under any circumstances.

Yad Vashem Methodology: Through OurEyesThrough Our Eyes contains a unique collection of excerpts from Jewish children’s diaries and Holocaust survivor testimonies. This book provides a chronological overview and highlights the perceptions of children from the early 1930s through 1945 and its aftermath. Through poetry, diaries and testimonies, Through Our Eyes reveals the innermost thoughts and feelings of children and teenagers, confronted by death and destruction. The book gives an insight into the world of the children who lived during the wartime period who were approximately the same age as the readers themselves.

The International School for Holocaust Studies produces educational materials as Through our Eyes for a variety of target populations and educational organizations in Israel and abroad. These materials are written according to our Pedagogical Philosophy, which stresses an age-appropriate, multi-disciplinary approach to Holocaust education.

Available at:

Yad Vashem Store:


To top

S’cool Agenda

The S’cool Agenda is a calendar by the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA) and it contributes to the goals of the European Year 2010 by recognising the fundamental rights of persons experiencing poverty. It provides informations about how people with different background experience poverty. Moreover there are spe-cific contents added from the Yad Vashem and Memorial de la Shoah dedicated to awareness raising about the Holocaust, Euro child what is this?and Child Helpline International complemented the S’cool Agenda with com-ments and contribution to pages dedicated to the rights of the Child; Inter LGB with comments on page concern-ing Homophobia and LGBT communities; Club Friends of Europe, European Women Lawyer’s Association with comments on page on Gender equality, European Older Peoples’ Platform (AGE) with comments on page con-cerning age discrimination.There are many acronyms here that need to be clarified. I also would separate the themes so that they do not melt into eachother
The S’cool Agenda is available for download under:

To top

ITF Guidelines for Teaching

The Education Working Group (EWG) of the International Task Force for International Cooperation on Holocaust Education, Remembrance, and Research (ITF) has developed guidelines for Holocaust education. These guide-lines are recommended for use in teacher training and are available translations in a number of EU languages. The section of the guidelines “How to Teach about the Holocaust?” is very practical.

To top

UN: Outreach programme on the “Holocaust and the United Nations”

The Holocaust and the United Nations Outreach Programme seeks to remind the world of the lessons to be learnt from the Holocaust in order to help to prevent future acts of genocide.

The Outreach Programme was created at the request of the United Nations General Assembly in its resolution 60/7, adopted on 1 November 2005. A broad initiative has been created, designed to encourage the development by United Nations Member States of educational curricula on the subject of the Holocaust, and to mobilize civil society for education and awareness. This includes a number of activities, including special events, film screenings, discussion papers from leading academics, information materials, partnerships with intergovernmental organizations and other initiatives, to encourage awareness and remind the world of the threat posed to us all when genocide and crimes against humanity are allowed to occur.


UN: ABC – Teaching Human Rights: Practical activities for primary and secondary schools

ABC – Teaching Human Rights: Practical activities for primary and secondary schools aims to serve as a user-friendly tool for human rights education and a multi-colored umbrella covering a number of basic human rights areas. It offers practical advice to teachers and other educators who want to foster human rights awareness and action among primary and secondary school children, including suggestions for developing learning activities. It is not meant to place an extra burden on an already overloaded curriculum but to assist in infusing human rights issues into subjects already taught in schools.  


Human Rights Education in the School Systems of Europe, Central Asia and North America

A Compendium of Good Practice

The Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE/ODIHR), the Council of Europe (CoE), the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) have developed a practical tool that would provide examples and guidance for all those involved in human rights education in the school system. The result is this collection of 101 good practices from Europe, North America and Central Asia – a resource for practitioners and policymakers as well as a platform for exchange among institutions and individuals.

World Memory Project

The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum has gathered millions of historical documents containing details about survivors and victims of the Holocaust and Nazi persecution during World War II. has spent more than a decade creating advanced technological tools that have allowed billions of historical documents to become searchable online.
Together, the two organizations have created the World Memory Project to allow the public to help make the records from the Museum searchable by name online for free—so more families of survivors and victims can discover what happened to their loved ones during one of the darkest chapters in human history. Anyone, any-where can contribute to this effort; even just one record and a few minutes at a time can make a world of differ-ence to someone. Getting started is as simple as downloading a free software program and then typing details from a record image into a database that will then become searchable online.
By being part of the World Memory Project you’ll be helping to create the largest online resource of information about individual victims of the Holocaust and Nazi persecution. You’ll also be restoring the identities of people the Nazis tried to erase from history and making sure future generations never forget.

To top

Postcards: Human Rights and Children, Human Rights and Environment and Human Rights and Religions

Students of the University of Teacher Education Lucerne (PHZ Lucerne), under the leadership of Claudia Nieder-berger, explored the theme of “Human Rights and Children” (2007) and “Human Rights and Environment” (2008) through the medium of “sculptural design” and created a series of postcards. The postcards are on sale from the Centre of Human Rights Education (ZMRB) of the University of Teacher Education Lucerne (PHZ Lucerne) at a price of EUR 1.00 per card. The proceeds from the sale of the postcards will be donated to SOS Children’s Villages.

Posters: Human Rights and Childrenand Human Rights and Religions

As part of the 4th International Human Rights Forum Lucerne (IHRF) 2007 and of the 6th International Human Rights Forum Lucerne (IHRF) 2009, the IHRF together with the students of the Lucerne School of Art and Design (HGKL) and supported by APG (Swiss out-of-home advertising firm) launched a poster competition on the theme of “Human Rights and Children” and “Human Rights and Religions”. The 10 best posters, selected by an expert jury, were presented in a public exhibition in the city-centre lasting two weeks. The exhibition was intended to support the IHRF’s aim of increasing society’s awareness of human rights.
The posters are on sale from the Centre of Human Rights Education (ZMRB) of the University of Teacher Educa-tion Lucerne (PHZ Lucerne) at a price of CHF 30.00 per poster.

Certificate of Advanced Studies CAS Human Rights Education

Human rights are the fundament of a peaceful coexistence of a society. But only when women and men know about their human rights, they can claim them for themselves and – in solidarity – for others (“empowerment”). Human rights education is taking place in different contexts (formal, non-formal,…). To close the global gap in further training opportunities in human rights education, the University of Teacher Education Central Switzerland (PHZ) is starting an international advanced qualification, the “Certificate of Advanced Studies CAS in Human Rights Education” in January 2012. The CAS Human Rights Education aims to qualify the participants for a role as trainer and multiplier of human rights education for their specific context.

The participants will achieve an internationally recognized Certificate of Advanced Studies PHZ in Human Rights Education. Alumni of the CAS “Human Rights Education” will be able to fulfill pedagogical functions in different professional contexts:
School Context (formal human rights education):
Teachers of all levels (e. g. with a coordinating role for cross-curricular topics)
Professors/Lecturers of Universities of Teacher Education/Teacher Colleges

Non-School Context (nonformal human rights education):
Employees of state and civil society institutions and organizations (e. g. members‘ support)
Employees of the human resources development of a company.

In the formal context you can be responsible for this transversal topic.
In the nonformal context you can be responsible in state and non-governmental organizations and corporations for human rights education enhancing the “mainstreaming of human rights”, the awareness-building for human rights challenges and for the potential of “empowerment”.

The participants will learn to use specific methods, materials and instruments of human rights education. In dialogue with the faculty of the CAS “Human Rights Education" (international experts in the practice of human rights education), the participants will achieve specific additional competencies in human rights education to be able to be a trainer and a multiplier of human rights education in their individual context (formal or nonformal) and to consult others within their professional context in the field of human rights education.

The CAS “Human Rights Education” will be bilingual in English and German.

Start: January 2012 (start: always January, end: always December)

10 Credit Points of the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS) (internationally recognized); this corresponds to a workload of 300 hours (incl. presence units, eLearning units, conference modules, study visits, preparation, postprocessing, private study, CAS thesis).

The presence units of the CAS “Human Rights Education” take place in Lucerne (Switzerland) (two hours train ride from Strasbourg (European Court of Human Rights) and 3 hours train ride from Geneva (UN)).

The participation in the CAS “Human Rights Education” can be extra-occupational. The presence units take place in compact blocks respectively in block weeks.

Application and further information:

To top