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Nazi Designers of Death

Classroom Activity

To read a reflection of Auschwitz life and suggest ways for gathering evidence to support the author's claims.

Materials for each team
  • copy of "The Selection" student handout (HTML)
  1. Photocopy and distribute the "The Selection" student handout. It was written by Elie Wiesel, a survivor of Auschwitz.

  2. As students read it, ask them to look for details and to suggest ways of gathering real evidence to support his testimony. For example, which Nazi officers or other individuals does the author mention by name or rank? What specific locations within the camp are described? In what ways do students think historians could use these descriptions to strengthen the case about the Holocaust?

Activity Answer

In this passage, Elie Wiesel refers to Dr. Mengele, who was an infamous participant in the killings and torture of prisoners in the concentration camps. Wiesel describes the block where he was assigned, gives the names of other prisoners, and describes the selection process. Testimonies like this, combined with similar stories from other people who were present, were used to confirm the accusations made about the Holocaust.

Teacher's Guide
Nazi Designers of Death

Video is not required for this activity