It is July 1944, and a young girl is writing in her trusty diary. She and her family have been in hiding for two years, living together in a cramped attic in Amsterdam. If they are found, they could be killed – and their only crime is that they are Jewish.
“In spite of everything, I still believe that people are really good at heart,” she wrote. Her name was Anne Frank.
At the time, millions of Jewish people in Europe were being captured and sent to concentration camps. There, they were either killed or forced to work in terrible conditions. This was the evil plan of Germany’s leader Adolf Hitler. It is now known as the “Holocaust”.
One month after she wrote those hopeful words, Anne and her family were discovered. Only her father survived. He published Anne’s diary to teach the world about what had happened.
Next Monday (27 January) is Holocaust Memorial Day. It takes place every year on the day that soldiers freed the people trapped in one of the largest concentration camps, called Auschwitz. This year, it is marking the 75th anniversary of that day.
It is a chance to remember those who were killed in the Holocaust, and to think about how to stop something similar from ever happening again.
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- Imagine that you are living in Europe during World War Two and the Holocaust. Write a diary entry explaining one day in your life – what you saw and how it made you feel.
- In groups, create a presentation about life for Jewish people in Nazi Germany during World War Two.