One of my all-time favorite books to read with my class is Number the Stars by Lois Lowry.
I love the drama, the foreshadowing, the cliff hangers, the character development, the chapter titles, the plot, the ending, and so much more. It is always one of my students’ favorites when we discuss the best books at the end of the year.
My only issue with teaching it was the lack of background information I was giving my students on what was happening in the world at the time of this novel.
It is SO incredibly important for the students to understand who the Nazis were and why there were controlling the Jews. This is not developed in the book, except for random facts here and there, so I knew I needed to do something to help my students get a grasp on the events that were happening in the world at the time.
So of course, I went to trusty PowerPoint 🙂 After doing a bit of research on my own, I created a PowerPoint presentation on World War II, Adolf Hitler, the Nazis, and the Holocaust. I think that it does a good job of presenting the information in a “kid-friendly” way, with photographs and important details.
Last week, I went through the presentation with my kiddos, and I swear they have never been so quiet, interested, and attentive! I’m not sure if it was because they were interested in the material or were horrified at what actually happened in our world not that long ago, but whatever it was, they now understand what was happening to the Jews in the 1940s. We talked about how we can learn from the past and pray that something so terrible is never repeated. We thanked God for His grace and mercy to us!
If you are interested in using this in your classroom, check it out on my TpT store: http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Introduction-to-Number-the-Stars-by-Lois-Lowry
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this wonderful novel. What kinds of activities do you do with your class to enrich the story??