The primary goals of A&R’s educational programs are to encourage compassion and creativity; to open hearts and minds to the experiences of others–particularly those who have experienced injustice; and to celebrate individual resilience and courage.To those ends, we partner with schools and community groups to use Esther’s art and story to teach about the Holocaust and discrimination, and also inspire participants to reflect on and share their own personal stories through art.
We offer teachers several lesson plans and guides.
HEART AND STORY
The power of art and story to reveal and heal is universal and timeless. A new program of Art and Remembrance, that builds on previous educational efforts, HeART and Story uses our award-winning documentary film, Through the Eye of the Needle, as a prompt to inspire reflection, discussion and story sharing among participants. With support from the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County and others, Art and Remembrance has begun a series of pilot HeART and Story programs, focusing on work with immigrant families, in partnership with established, local community groups. Our hope is to continue piloting the project, with a wide range of audiences, and ultimately create a program kit–with a DVD of our film, discussion and workshop guides, and resources–that can be distributed nationwide to interested groups so that they can facilitate the program for their own communities.
Since its inception, Art and Remembrance has been dedicated to bringing the art and story of Esther Nisenthal Krinitz–as teaching tool and inspiration–to schoolchildren, through countless in-school presentations, numerous projects, and personally-guided museum tours.
The organization has partnered with individual teachers and schools to develop rich programs–from The Hero Project undertaken by 5th grade students at Hunter College Elementary School in New York City; to the Stories of Perseverance project, with students from a diversity of backgrounds at Bailey’s Crossroads Elementary in Virginia; to the Journeys project at the Fillmore Arts Center, a program of DC Public Schools, where students studied Esther’s art and story along with those of other journeys to and in America (including Jacob Lawrence’s Great Migration Series), and then developed dramatic renditions based on these images and stories, and artwork based on their own families’ journeys. A fuller description of, and sample artwork, from The Hero Project are accessible in our Galleries section, and lesson plans from The Hero Project and Stories of Perseverance are available under Teaching Tools.
Art and Remembrance has also created a discussion guide for use in high schools, for the 30-minute documentary, Through the Eye of the Needle: The Art of Esther Nisenthal Krinitz. The guide was developed with the help of a team of veteran social studies teachers in the Montgomery County Public Schools in Maryland, and is being piloted as a complement to the County’s 11th grade Holocaust curriculum. We look forward at some point to further developing the guide and making it available to more school districts nationwide.