This document suggests that the movie "Schindler's List" be used as an instructional resource in order to provide criterion situations for teachings. The film opens multiple routes into complex questions that raise universal and immediate meanings, yet also generates idiosyncratic understanding. Learning history in an authentic way is more powerful than merely understanding the events of a particular story or even reading about them in a reputable textbook. Because of this, a teacher should strive to help students to begin to understand what the experience of history is and for what purpose it is included in the school curriculum. "Schindler's List" provides ample opportunities for students to raise questions about the world of the Third Reich. The important issue is that students need to be curious themselves, to raise the issues to be pursued, and to construct new meanings through their own work. At the same time, broader concerns of learning history need to be addressed through the goals of classroom instruction. The film provides opportunities to teach critical thinking and the pursuit of supportive argument. The story of the Oskar Schindler survivors underlines that history is vitally related to human actions and a sense of sequence and time. This paper addresses the issues raised in the film and how they can be used to develop skills that serve the learner as citizen and human being. Teaching programs that have been successful in dealing with such complex issues as those presented in the film are discussed. (DK)
Holocaust; Schindler (Oskar); Schindlers List
1 - Available on microfiche
Research for Better Schools, Inc., Philadelphia, PA.
Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.