News that Israeli children are to receive compulsory lessons about the Holocaust provoked an outcry from pundits who were traumatised by teachers when they were young. But a book for the youngest schoolchildren aims to avoid this mistake.
Shulamit Imber, Pedagogical Director of the International School for Holocaust Studies, claims the book is a good tool because it concentrates on life rather than death, without ignoring the true circumstances. It will educate but not traumatise. Under the new curriculum children will have 15 to 20 hours of Holocaust education a year using materials that are age-appropriate. At the moment teachers deal with the subject as they think best, often in the run-up to Holocaust Memorial Day on 27 January, but they are rarely suitably trained.
However, some commentators are asking whether Israeli children really need this added information on genocide when Israel’s security situation has nothing to do with the subject.
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