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Next we traveled to Warsaw to POLIN The Museum of the History of the Polish Jews and presented The Butterfly Project at the The Olga Lengyel Institute’s (TOLI) Poland Seminar. Thank you to Dr. Angie Gascho of Our Lady of Peace of North Park San Diego for her custom lesson unit written for The Butterfly Project specifically for this Poland seminar. We listened to testimony from 3 Generations and had the opportunity to share deeply with 32 dedicated Polish educators who signed on to increase their competency with teaching the Holocaust. Our expressive arts and educational programming was warmly welcomed.
Remembrance. Education. Empathy. Hope. If this can happen on the ground where so much violence and bloodshed occurred, it can happen anywhere. Our hope lies with these teachers that are on the front lines both locally and abroad. Our commitment is strengthened by these incredibly dedicated teachers and communities.
I am grateful to hear direct feedback from Holocaust Survivor Ben Midler. Ben was born in Bialystok Poland and has been involved with The Butterfly Project since 2007. He says, "It is incredible to get the Polish children talking about the Holocaust and painting butterflies.” In this month's newsletter, we share with you two stories about this special trip - one written from Maren Oom Galarpe and the second written by Nicole Nicon. May we all rise to teaching the truth and finding hope with the next generation.The Butterfly Project Flies to Germany and PolandWritten by Maren Oom Galarpe, educator and member of The Butterfly Project'sBoard of Directors
How do we make the Holocaust accessible to students? What’s at stake, for them, for us, for the world? But equally important, what can we learn from working with one another? – Sondra Perl
As an arts educator and perpetual student of life, I carry a great deal of continuous wonder and inquiry throughout my days. The questions above from Sondra Perl, author and Senior Program Director at The Olga Lengyel Institute (TOLI), resonated with me throughout my journey to Germany and Poland. They floated through a combination of silent and celebratory moments, continuously reminding me that there is so much to learn from others in the process of becoming a better educator, leader, human.
In June, I traveled as a Board member, conference presenter and ambassador of The Butterfly Project. Cheryl Rattner Price and I met contacts in Cottbus and Berlin, Germany. Then we presented at TOLI’s teacher seminar in partnership with POLIN- the Museum of the History of Polish Jews, in Warsaw, Poland.
I was excited to meet educators and administrators abroad. What ideas would we share? What will it be like with various native languages spoken amongst us? What is working and not working in our efforts to deliver high quality, impactful Holocaust education that provokes students to take positive action? These questions, like Perl’s questions above, swirled through my head. But again, it was Perl’s last question above, that gets to the heart of this recent trip abroad: …what can we learn from working with one another?
When my friend Steven Schindler first asked me if we should bring The Butterfly Project to my daughter’s school in Cottbus, Germany, I would never have dreamt of what this initiative would set in motion. Steven is the son of the Holocaust survivor Max Schindler z” l of blessed memory from San Diego. Max Schindler was born in Cottbus and he was thrown out of the country by the Nazis in 1938. Of the Schindler family, only Max and his brother Alfred survived. Their parents and their sister died in the Holocaust.
Students at La Jolla Country Day School (LJCSD) engaged in a month-long learning expedition about respect, citizenship, and dignity, using The Butterfly Projectprogramming as a core lesson of their learning. Educator Jonathan Shulman led the mission to bring these important lessons to all students at LJCDS. Using age-appropriate programming, students as young as 3 years old and as old as 18 participated in The Butterfly Project, culminating with a full day of programming. During this event, 2,300 students, parents, educators, and staff of LJCSD painted butterflies in honor of the 1.5 million children who perished during the Holocaust.
Funds are needed for digital and hands-on components to go with the Interactive Educational Exhibit. If you are interested in donating, please contact us. DonateIt is a pleasure to share these inspiring details with you. Thank you for all of your support throughout the years. We could not get to this point without you.
Cheryl Rattner Price Executive Director & Co-Founder email@example.com
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