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Edsitement! - Anne Frank: One of Hundreds of Thousands

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Computer(s), Internet access

Activity Description

This lesson invites you to supplement your students' reading of The Diary of a Young Girl by connecting the diary to the study of history and to honor the legacy of Anne Frank, the writer, as she inspires your students to use writing to deepen their insights into their own experiences and the experiences of others.

In the class activity, students look at a series of maps to gain an idea of the territorial changes in Europe after World War I up to the beginning of the defeat of Germany. They complete a map intended to show the speed and reach of Germany's wartime expansion. Then students share information about the German occupation in some European countries, which they then compare to the situation in the Netherlands. Lastly, students analyze a map.


  1. Review the lesson plan.
  2. Download the chart, World War II in Europe (available as a PDF), that will be used in this lesson.
  3. Prepare copies of the maps, articles, and chart, as necessary.


View Detailed Lesson Plans

Activity 1 Anne Frank: One of Hundreds of Thousands

  1. Review with the class the territorial changes that were forced on Germany after World War I as shown in the map German Territorial Losses: Versailles Treaty 1919.
  2. Have students record the month and date of each country's defeat by Germany. Germany's occupation of European countries can be seen in a map of Europe in 1942, and a timeline of occupation provided in the second paragraph of the brief essay, World War II in Europe.
  3. Divide students into groups and assign each an article about one country.
  4. Read with the class the article "Netherlands,".

Teacher Tips

•Material about the Holocaust must be presented to young people with great sensitivity. An excellent list of methodological considerations is available on page 13 of Teaching about the Holocaust: A Resource Book for Educators; guidelines may also be found in the online workshop Teaching about the Holocaust. This lesson should take 3 class periods.

More Ways

Students interested in learning more about The Holocaust can explore The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum's The Holocaust: A Learning Site for Students: "Organized by theme, this site uses text, historical photographs, maps, images of artifacts, and audio clips to provide an overview of the Holocaust. It is the first step in a growing resource for middle and secondary level students and teachers, with content that reflects the history as it is presented in the Museum's Permanent Exhibition, The Holocaust."

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English Language Arts

  • American Literature

Social Studies

  • World History
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OTAN activities are funded by contract CN200091-A2 from the Adult Education Office, in the Career & College Transition Division, California Department of Education, with funds provided through Federal P.L., 105-220, Section 223. However, OTAN content does not necessarily reflect the position of that department or the U.S. Department of Education.