Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Paper Clips + Jewish Memorial = Kids Off The Couch...who will never forget

With Passover starting tonight, and the ongoing crisis in Darfur entering its seventh year, the timing feels right to speak with our kids about the tragedy of intolerance.

The politics of genocide are not kid-friendly. But our children had an easier time comprehending the sheer numbers involved in the Holocaust after we showed them Paper Clips, a powerful documentary about students in rural Tennessee who tried to collect six million paper clips and, in the process, collected a whole lot more: the story behind each paper clip. Collecting six million items helped them envision the victims as real people -- mothers and fathers, sisters and brothers. To bolster the lessons our kids are also learning in their middle-school history classes, we visited a
Jewish Museum's Holocaust exhibit, and were lucky enough to meet a Holocaust survivor who shared her history with us. Great stories like The Diary of Anne Frank and Hotel Rwanda humanize unspeakable portions of human history and it is by retelling these stories we work to prevent them from happening again.

Click here for a list of Jewish Museums around the country, and to learn more about the crisis in Darfur.