Tuesday, October 31, 2006

World at War class discussion

Posted by: Margaret Lincoln // Category: Understanding by design // 2:43 pm

As part of a World War II/Holocaust unit involving the reading of All But My Life, Lakeview HS students in the World at War class will post to this Weblog. The Big Ideas and Essential Questions addressed by the unit are listed below: 

Big Ideas – A big idea is a “conceptual anchor or key organizing principle” (a main underlying idea or an idea that serves as a central focus). Big ideas are meant to initiate inquiry, dialogue, and debate and are difficult to define. 

  • Governments can do great harm and great good. 
  • Individuals can do great harm and great good. 

Essential Questions – An Essential question is a question that engages and potentially motivates students. 

  • How did governments act to protect and/or violate basic human rights during the WWII era? 
  • What were the ramifications of prejudice, racism, and indifference as well as courage, valor, and faith within the context of the Holocaust? 


  1. they violated the human rights by keeping secrets from there people and leading them to belive things that wernt true.

  2. A big idea is a “conceptual anchor or key organizing principle” (a main underlying idea or an idea that serves as a central focus). Big ideas are meant to initiate inquiry, dialogue, and debate and are difficult to define.

  3. I believe that governments only do good to hide the fact that they have done and still do great bad things. No single type of gevernment is the best because they are all corrupt. Even the our government is corrupt and does very bad things, we just do not choose to hear and believe the things that we do.

  4. Many countries reacted to the holocaust in different ways, some countries helped the cause to stop hitler and the nazi’s almost immediately, others werent as fast to step forward about it. i think that if more countries would have reacted sooner and tried to stop it we could have worked together to save more lives.

  5. The obvious ramifications of prejudice, racism, and indifference are all of the crimes committed against humanity that occured during the Holocaust. The Holocaust couldn’t have happened without all three of these elements. Without prejudice and racism, the Jewish community would never have been blamed or punished for their “impurities” and “posining” Germany. And without the indifference of the German people who did not feel hatred towards the Jewish people, the Holocaust wouldn’t have been able to executed on such a vast scale. If even just one of these elemenst hadn’t been so widespread, than I don’t believe the Holocaust would have been allowed to take place.
    -Tim H.

  6. There were many people who have reacted differently to the holocaust and some people helped out the cause of hitler for him to stop. The Nazi’s almost stop them immedialty. But other people were not brave enough to step forward to stop hitler. I think that if everyone stepped up then many lives could of been saved. Too many people getting killed for nothing and could of been saved if people fought to hitler.

  7. Governments can do great harm and great good-
    it had shown that governments can do great harm as example by the holocaust, and also great good as example of the other countries who stopped the killing.

    Individuals can do great harm and great good-
    individuals had huge impacts in the war including the big leaders, josef stalen, hitler, and others. also, there were many military leaders who affected individual battles in the war.

    The nazi’s were a great example of violation of human rights, as shown in their actions by attemptng to kill all jews. In reaction to that, other countries are an example of protecting human rights by sttempting to stop the nazi’s

    the ramifications of prejudice racism and indifference are shown by the way the jews were separated from the other people by the nazi’s and courge valor and faith were shown by the heroes, and mlitary leaders who helped to save the jews or kill the nazi’s

  8. Things that the government did both help and violated humans right. They didn’t try to stop the Hitlers rule in Germany, didn’t take action when he broke the treaty, and didn’t try to do any thing when Jews went to the camps to either work or be killed. We also didn’t go to war, but when Americans got killed. I’m not saying we shouldn’t gone to war, but we should have gone sooner and not wait untill something that happens to us. Something thats happening over seas may not affect us when it starts as a whole, but we should help out as soon as it starts. Governments acts did help people. Some actions that happen in the US help for awhile. Some actions that where taken to me are question able. When they

  9. (part of 8) took Japan and Chinese and put them in camps it was the same thing in Germany, but it was the fear of protecting the US and citizens. It would. People are affected be other people around them.

  10. First of all, most governments are group of people. Even dictators belong to political parties and give others with high rankings in the political party some sort of office. These people hold authority and much power. There are two base facts that make governments prone to corruption merely because of their power and structure.
    1) Groups are deficient. Since you were younger you’ve always been told to use the “buddy system”. However, it is proven that being in a group affects the mind. The subconcious thoughts and urges towards violence, cruelty, and other malicious behaviors are strengthened when people are in groups. Also, the ear of one person in the group fuels the fears of everyone else, and can lead to irradic behavior. In NYC, a man was killed on his way home from his bachelor party because he was drunk and rammed his van into a police car. There is some debate over the possibility that he was a wanted man. However, in 3-5 seconds, 50 shots were fired at him. killing him. In a similar incident in 1999, a man was shot at 70 times, and was lifted off the ground by the 14 bullets that hit him. The only reason he was hot was that the four police officers thought the a man sitting outside at midnight was suspicious. They drew their weapons, and, being scared, he ran. He reached in his pocket and was killed before he was able to take his hand out of his pocket. It turns out that the man was an immigrant from haiti, and was reaching in his pocket for his wallet in order to show his I.D.
    2) Those who have power, use it, in fear of losing it. Every leader of the world seeks to assert his or her own power. Unfortunately, this commonly means that the people suffer. The leader’s insecurities and beliefs are often lashed out upon the people, as in the Holocaust, and other such genocides.

    -Christopher Marsh

  11. LeggMS

    I personaly have not read “All But My Life”. Although I did hear Gerda Weissmann Klein discuss her horrific experiances in her movie. Her words were so powerful that they almost brought me to tears. The thought of someone being able to treat another person in such ways was to much for me to bare. I find it remakable that these men and women had the will to live after all they had been though. It’s amazing how they kept on fighting for what they knew rightfully belonged to them, their freedom. Every single one of the of the survivers must of had an incredible amout of inner strength and hope. When I hear about things like this happening, I take a moment and realize how lucky I truly am to have my freedom. If only everyone would feel the same way, then maybe life wouldn’t be taken for granit like it is today.

    -Amy, Adv. English