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MAR 26, 2012

"Skalk Museum": Mira Costa High School Visits LAMOTH


On February 29th, 2012 Zamira Skalkottas took her Sophomore English class to the Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust in order to gain background knowledge prior to reading the core curriculum book Night by Ellie Wiesel.

On this fieldtrip students were given the opportunity to gain a better contextual understanding of the book Night. At the museum students were able to appreciate the harsh reality of the book and the events of the Holocaust.

“This book is really well written,” Skalkottas said. “I want the students to gain more perspective and knowledge about the topic of Night.”

When the students arrived at the museum, they were divided into several tour groups led by tour guides. At the museum there were many rooms that displayed various types of memorabilia that depicted what the holocaust was really like for those who endured it.

“Much of what the students saw and learned about will be in the book,” Skalkottas said. “They will be able to better visualize what they are reading about.”

One exhibit that was viewed was the Goldrich Family Foundation Children’s Memorial which payed respects to the children who died in the holocaust. Students were given a piece of paper to write a message to the children who were honored.

“We wrote words of comfort and wishes to the children and then left our messages at the memorial,” sophomore Vivian Nguyen said.

The first room in the museum explained how the Jewish people were targeted for persecution. There is a large touchscreen that displays pictures of families who were in the holocaust and gave a brief description of their situations. This exhibit helped to demonstrate similar scenarios in the book.

“This room was really inspiring,” sophomore Luke Dam said. “It really brought the holocaust to life because there actual pictures of actual people who experienced it.”

Students were also able to look at exhibits that displayed Nazism and a history of Hitler’s rise to power. They also learned about the atrocities of living in concentration camps.

“I learned that people went through a lot in the holocaust,” Nguyen said. “It was really intense to learn about the harsh lives at the concentration camps.”

Students then listened to Holocaust survivor Gabriella speak about her personal experience and what her life was like. She explained how surviving the holocaust was pure luck.

“Going to the museum was really interesting,” sophomore Amy Fitzgerald said. “I had the honor to meet an actual holocaust survivor. I am really glad I went.”

There was an automated tour that some of the students listened to as they looked at different pieces of memorabilia. As they walked from room to room, they were able to learn about various events that happened.

“It was a culturally enriching experience that revealed the harsh reality of the time period,” sophomore Andrew Geroch said. “I think this fieldtrip will help me better understand and appreciate the book.”

Emily Lockwood, Staff Writer for La Vista

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