By Caroline Sturgeon ’20
History teachers from both campuses visited the Holocaust Museum on Jan. 18th. This is the first time that the teachers got together for a professional development day, in which all teachers from one department take a day off school to attend seminars, conferences or museums. The trip was arranged by upper school history teacher abs interdisciplinary studies department head, Larry Klein.
“The history of the Holocaust is inexhaustible because of the millions of people affected by it. There is always something new to learn,” middle school history teacher George Gaskin said.
The Holocaust Museum has a large collection of artifacts and tokens of remembrance. It focuses on educating the public about the historic event.
“This museum is so well laid out. Every exhibit has an audio component. We also had incredible docent. The docent had letters that were from her mom, who was a holocaust survivor, which they had found in an auction house and managed to get, and they are in the museum,” middle school history teacher John Corsello said.
Klein also arranged a special tour and presentation at the museum.
“We had a presentation in the afternoon by an administrator from the museum, and she was talking about the testimony of a particular woman who had survived the Holocaust,” Corsello said.
The teachers were also able to look around the museum separately after their group tour and presentation. The female Holocaust survivor that the teachers learned about in their private presentation had also been previously researched by a group of upper school students.
“I was moved by the personal stories of people who lost their lives, people who survived the horrible time period and people who risked everything to resist. “ Gaskin said.
Although the teachers said they were touched and enjoyed the trip, they are not able to make it an annual one.
“We cannot take days off from school every year to do the same thing with the same people,” Corsello said.
The program said they hope to plan another professional development day for the teachers at a different location in the future.