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Rare opportunity

Shaker teacher selected for Holocaust Museum fellowship

— MacFawn will spend July 14 through 18 at the museum for training, learning about topics including the rise in German anti-Semitism and contextualizing the Holocaust. Fredlake said fellows will receive challenges throughout their training, including having to develop a particular lesson to teach around a topic using the resources of the museum. Fellows will also hear from historians at the museum and as scholars from outside of it.

Fredlake, who was a fellow himself in 1997, said many of the fellows have gone on to work for other Holocaust museums throughout the country or to teach courses on the topic in higher education institutions.

“It’s an elite group in a lot of ways, and a highly motivated group. I think most often fellows come away with this desire to do more in the field,” Fredlake said.

One of the fellowship’s requirements is an outreach program within the classroom. With MacFawn’s idea already in place, she said she plans on working with a 10th grade social studies teacher to link the two classes to focus on human rights issues and try to pose a solution. Their students will have a human rights project and find a way to become involved with something larger. If students are interested in childhood hunger, for example, they could become involved with an organization trying to address the problem.

“Something they can actually do to contribute to helping improve someone’s life who’s struggling or has a difficult life,” MacFawn added.

While being selected as a fellow requires meeting certain criteria – including already having an extensive knowledge on the Holocaust – Fredlake said MacFawn’s experience teaching the Common Core learning standards was a definite plus. He said it could be helpful for MacFawn to teach the other fellows and help implement the Holocaust into the Common Core curriculum standards.

Once the outreach project is finished, MacFawn will return to Washington, D.C. in July 2014 for a follow-up program.

MacFawn said she plans on building a consistent relationship with the museum post-fellowship.

“(I want) to have the students see the museum as a place where they should want to go to. And a lot of them want to go. I would love to arrange a trip. It would be fantastic,” MacFawn said.

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