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Netherlands - Holocaust Education Report


Country Report on Holocaust Education in Task Force Member Countries

Netherlands


Date of issue: 2011

 

Country Report on Holocaust Education

The Netherlands 2011

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Task Force for International Cooperation on Holocaust Education, Remembrance, and Research

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May 2011

Table of Contents

Foreword.. 4

Preface: Framework for education in the Dutch school system... 5

1.......... What official directives from government ministries and/or local authorities regarding the teaching of the Holocaust exist in your country? Please attach these directives to your answer. 8

2.......... If the Holocaust isn't a mandatory subject, what percentage of schools chooses to teach it?  10

3.......... How is the Holocaust defined?. 13

4.......... Is the Holocaust taught as a subject in its own right, or as part of a broader topic? Explain the reasoning behind this decision. 13

5.......... At what age do young people learn about the Holocaust in school? Do students encounter the Holocaust in school more than once? Please provide details. 14

6.......... How many hours are allocated to teaching and learning about the Holocaust in schools?  15

7.......... In what areas of study (history, literature, sociology, and theology) is the Holocaust taught? In each case, briefly outline the rationale for teaching the Holocaust in this particular subject area. 16

8.......... What historical, pedagogical and didactic training is provided to teachers of the Holocaust at either the university level or the professional development level in your country?. 17

9.......... Has your country instituted a national Holocaust Memorial Day? If so, how is this day marked and commemorated? What difficulties have you encountered in establishing this day of remembrance in the national consciousness?. 20

10........ Has your country established a national Holocaust memorial and/or museum? How many students visit this memorial/museum each year?. 25

11........ Please estimate the percentage of students in your country who visit authentic sites, and list three primary sources of funding available in your country for visits to authentic sites. 29

12........ What are the three major textbooks used in teaching the Holocaust in your country? How many pages do your school textbooks allocate to the Holocaust, and which aspects do they focus on?  29

13........ What strategies of differentiation are typically used to make the study of the Holocaust accessible to students of different ages and with different learning needs?. 31

14........ To what extent, and in what ways, is your country's own national history integrated into the teaching of the Holocaust?. 32

15........ What are the three major obstacles to teaching and learning about the Holocaust in your country?  33

Sources. . 35

Foreword

This report provides an up to date overview of Holocaust education in the Netherlands. The previous report was made in 2005. This report provides an overview of the current situation. The information contained in it is based on reports, literature, websites, information provided by institutions and personal accounts of professionals working in this field.

There have been many changes in Holocaust education during this period. The Netherlands has adopted a new national history curriculum. An historic canon has been introduced as an addition to the curriculum used in primary (age 4 to12) and secondary education (lower school, age 12 to15).

The Netherlands has two official remembrance days regarding the Second World War, May 4th and 5th.  There are many other dates on which commemoration ceremonies are being held. This is explained more extensively in question 9. Victims of war and violence are commemorated on May 4th; the liberation and freedom in general are celebrated on the 5th. Since 2005, ad hoc initiatives have developed around Holocaust Memorial Day, which provides fertile ground for new initiatives, even though it has not replaced the national official remembrance days. The Jewish community commemorates the Shoah annually on Jom HaSjoa as well. This commemoration dates back to 1946. On August 15th, the victims of the Second World War in the former Dutch East Indies are commemorated.

In 2010, the three-year Heritage of War programme, set up by the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport, came to an end (2007 to 2009). This project was instigated by the government to consolidate and make the heritage of the Second World War accessible. Two hundred and twenty one projects have been supported with government funding, and many provide new educational materials or sources. These new websites, archives, interviews, objects, digital portals, documentaries and databases will be used within the education system, many sources are now available to history teachers. The Netherlands Institute for War Documentation (NIOD) has developed a Network of War Sources and has been charged with the task of disseminating the knowledge that is now available by the Ministry for Health, Welfare and Sport.[1]

Within a few years most of the eyewitnesses will no longer be with us. One of the consequences will be a loss of emotional connection to the history of the Holocaust and the Second World War. Institutions, for example the Jewish History Museum, and DANS, a digital archive, have collected many eyewitness accounts on film. These important testimonies could and will be used in education, but can only partially fill that gap. The next generation of students won't have a personal connection and this will influence Holocaust education. Today, eyewitnesses still do visit schools for guest lectures.

Preface: Framework for education in the Dutch school system

Most Dutch children enter primary school in the year they turn four, although the compulsory school age is five years old. Primary education lasts eight years.

On average, children are 12 years old when they enter secondary education. This sector offers several options: pre-vocational secondary education (VMBO), general secondary education (HAVO) and pre-university education (VWO). After VMBO, at an average age of 16, students may transfer to secondary vocational education (MBO). Those who have completed the theoretical programme can also choose to transfer to HAVO.

HAVO is intended as preparation for higher professional education (HBO). VWO is intended to prepare students for research-oriented education (WO). In practice, however, a limited number of VWO graduates also transfer to HBO.

In 2009/2010, around 1.6 million children attended primary school (i.e. some 200,000 per grade), and approximately 940,000 followed any type of secondary education.[2]

Holocaust education is mainly taught during history lessons about the Second World War. But the Holocaust and Second World War may also be taught as part of other subjects like religious studies, civic studies and languages. In secondary schools, 30-40 percent of all students take final exams in history. The majority of the students who take history exams are in higher secondary education (HAVO-VWO).

History

In the Dutch educational system, history is taught in primary school, and in lower secondary school. Most students will learn about history in general, and the Second World War in particular, twice. Students who choose history during higher secondary education go through this cycle a third time. The curriculum is designed in such a way that students deepen their knowledge each time around.

Eras

In all schools, 'history' is a compulsory subject. The curriculum is based on a framework of 'orientation knowledge', containing ten clear-cut periods of history (called 'eras') each with a number of 'characteristic features'. At every level, (primary school, lower secondary school and higher secondary school) pupils will learn about all ten eras. These characteristic features are broad descriptions providing a framework for orientation knowledge.

Textbook series

Dutch teachers and students work with textbooks, in which the curriculum of orientation knowledge, eras and characteristic features are explained. The Dutch system is heavily textbook-based. Almost all teachers choose one of the major history methods and as such, the authors of the textbooks have a lot of influence on the history lesson in the classroom. Most schools use one of four major history methods, out of the ten to 15 available.[3]

Holocaust education in the Netherlands is incorporated in lessons on the Second World War. The characteristic features of the 'Time of World Wars' era - which includes the First and Second World War and the Holocaust - are:

- The role of modern propaganda and mass-organisations.

- Totalitarian ideas, Communism and Fascism.

- The First and Second World Wars.

- Racism and discrimination, which led to the genocide of the Jews in particular.

- The occupation of The Netherlands.

- Weapons of mass-destruction and the role of citizens in warfare.

Some or all of these subjects are taught, depending on the level of education.

Teachers can choose their own examples from history to teach these characteristic features but they mostly tend to follow the textbook.

Canon

A growing number of teachers also use the 'history curriculum canon', which is a timeline of key figures and events in Dutch history.[4] Two topics from this canon are relevant to Holocaust education: 'Anne Frank, the persecution of Jews' and 'The Second World War: occupation and liberation'.

Exams

The final history exams consist of two parts. The first part comprises a series of tests on the orientation knowledge (eras and characteristic features). In this part, knowledge of the Second World War and the Holocaust is tested. The second part of the exam covers two subjects, which change every two years. The Second World War has not been one of the subjects for the past two decades. This part of the exam will disappear in the near future.

This report focuses on history education, as this is where teaching about the Holocaust is part of the curriculum. However, teachers in many other subjects also deal with the Holocaust. Social sciences (Civic education), religious education and Dutch language classes are all subjects that regularly focus on the Holocaust, sometimes in cross-curricular projects.

1.     What official directives from government ministries and/or local authorities regarding the teaching of the Holocaust exist in your country? Please attach these directives to your answer.

Schools have in principal a lot of freedom in deciding on content within the attainment targets that are mandatory, in regard to the right of freedom of education. However, two ministries in the Netherlands are involved in providing guidelines for Holocaust Education. The Ministry of Education is responsible for the curriculum and the directives. The Ministry for Health, Welfare and Sport has a department with responsibility for the heritage and memory of the Second World War, and it influences teaching practice through the projects that it supports.

The whole of the Dutch education system is based on seven themes. History lessons are covered within the theme 'Personal and World Orientation'.[5] It contains two sub-themes that are relevant in this regard: 'Man and Society' and 'Time'.[6]

A new approach to teaching history was implemented in 2001. The Ministry of Education determined eras for history lessons in that year, within the domain 'Time'. Knowledge is tested using key attainment targets, which are age-specific and differentiated according to level of education. These targets were last adjusted in 2006.

In 2006, the Ministry of Education appointed a committee that developed a history canon for the Netherlands. This canon focuses on 50 topics (called 'frames'). These 50 topics aim, for educational purposes, to cover the history of the Netherlands. The canon isn't compulsory, but aims to provide a range of important topics in support of the curriculum. The use of the canon is advised within the required curriculum. Teachers should pay attention on them, but may decide in what way.

A 2009 publication from the Ministry for Health, Welfare and Sport stated that: "Learning about the Holocaust is one of the key attainment targets in both primary and secondary education."[7]

The government further states that: "Today and tomorrow's generations must know about the past if they are to be alert to similar dangers in the present, and be in a position to respond appropriately when it is time to take a stand. Knowing what occurred during the war and understanding the circumstances that allowed it to happen makes it easier to be vigilant, to recognise any warning signals in your own time and to know how to act with integrity."[8] This illustrates the approach to Holocaust education as 'learning from the past', a trend that began in the 1990s and is still part of teaching practice today.[9]

Overview of history education on the Holocaust and Second World War[10]

Era (no. 9)

Characteristic feature (no. 20)

Canon for primary education

Canon for secondary education

Era of world wars and crises 1900-1950

20: The German occupation of the Netherlands and the persecution of the Jews * The Second World War as a clash between Fascism and democracy * On May 10th, 1940 the German army invaded the Netherlands and occupied the country until the liberation on May 5th 1945.

* The attitude of the people

* Persecution of Jews and Gypsies.

The Second World War * The occupation of The Netherlands

* Anne Frank

- Persecution of Jews in the Netherlands

- More than 100.000 Jews were deported to the concentration camps, amongst them was Anne Frank

- Transit camp Westerbork

The Second World War * The scale of the war (worldwide)

* Anne Frank

- Nazi racism and the persecution of European Jews as the ultimate consequence

- more than 100,000 Jews from the Netherlands were deported to concentration camps, mainly Auschwitz and Sobibor, where most of them were killed. One of them was Anne Frank

- Westerbork transit camp.

2.     If the Holocaust isn't a mandatory subject, what percentage of schools chooses to teach it?

Teaching the Holocaust is fully integrated with teaching the history of the Second World War in Dutch schools and although it is part of the official curriculum Dutch teachers do have a lot of freedom in choosing the topics that they teach.  Since the Holocaust is dealt with in lessons about the Second World War and covered by all major history methods, it is taught at all schools. Most students learn about the Holocaust either twice or three times during their school career.

Some schools may pay extra attention to the Holocaust by organising school projects, or by visiting a museum or an authentic site. The directives also state that the Holocaust should be a topic within lessons on the Second World War (see 4.) Text book series provide the required information, and teachers can choose from a wide range of additional materials developed by almost all war and memorial centres, as mentioned in the answer to question 10. In addition, many local initiatives offer in-depth education on local history. The southern village of Beek, for example, organises a yearly walking tour of sites related to the history of the persecution of the Jews for primary school students. In 2010, 3,000 pupils and hundreds of adults went on this commemorative walk.[11]

Additional educational materials

Several institutions (NGOs, museums and memorial centres) provide additional teaching materials, which are often used in class. The National Committee for May 4th and 5th (Nationaal Comité 4 en 5 mei) annually provides schools with a booklet for students (aged 10 to 11 years old) on the meaning of war and freedom for children.[12] This booklet is funded by the government and ordered (free of charge) by most schools in the Netherlands. It introduces children to the traditions and rituals connected to the commemoration of the Second World War.[13]

Two thirds of primary schools order the Anne Frank Journal that is reissued annually for students age 11 to 12 years old. [14] The story of Anne Frank is placed in the broader context of the Holocaust. The journal is accompanied each year by a film, book or game, aimed at the same age group, with a different theme each time. Sometimes they are historical and focus on a specific aspect of the Holocaust; in other years the themes are contemporary.[15]

Many primary and secondary schools take their students to historical sites linked to the Holocaust or invite eyewitnesses to speak about the Holocaust or about their experiences as children or teenagers during the occupation. The National Support Point for Guest Speakers (Steunpunt Gastsprekers) provides professional backing for eyewitnesses who come to schools to talk about their personal experiences.[16] This Support Point (based in Camp Westerbork Memorial Centre) links the schools with the guest speakers but also offers training opportunities for guest speakers. Teachers' and students' family members or acquaintances are often invited into classrooms to give personal accounts of the war years.

Some of the historical sites and museums - i.e. The Hollandsche Schouwburg (Dutch Theatre[17]), Camp Westerbork Memorial Centre, Camp Vught National Memorial, the Anne Frank House, the Resistance Museums - regularly publish educational materials that are used in schools.[18] Many of the publications are aimed at preparing students for a visit to a site.[19] All of these institutions also have websites, which provide educational materials. On the website of the National Committee for May 4th and 5th an overview of additional educational materials can be found.[20]

The educational materials developed by museums and memorial centres mostly deal with a specific topic, i.e. the site itself, or with local history. The materials vary from websites, online games or web quests, to lesson packs and questionnaires. [21] They are generally aimed at students, but the target group may also include others. For example, the Groningen War and Resistance Centre provides a 'memory box' for seniors.[22]

Graphic Novels

In 2003, the graphic artist Eric Heuvel developed the first educational graphic novel (or comic book) in cooperation with the Anne Frank House. 'The Family Secret' focused on the occupation of the Netherlands. In 2007, a comic book specifically about the Holocaust called 'The Search' was published, and in 2010 a third graphic novel called 'The Return' was created by the same authors. It tells the story of the Second World War in the former Dutch East Indies. 'Anne Frank - The Graphic Biography' was also published as an educational project in 2010. The Dutch government offered 'The Family Secret' and 'The Return' as a National Gift to all students in the 2nd year of secondary education (aged 15). The specific educational nature of these graphic novels can be found in the storyline and choice of themes addressed, but above all in the accompanying educational tools: worksheets for students, online applications and guidelines for teachers.[23]

The 'Adopt a Monument' project was launched in 1985 by the February '41 Foundation (Stichting Februari  '41) and has grown ever since.[24] It was handed over to the National Committee for May 4th and 5th in 2004. Over 1,300 primary schools (out of a total of 8,000) have now adopted a monument dedicated to the Second World War. In the weeks prior to the national commemoration, special attention is paid to the relationship between the school and the monument and many schools launch educational projects of a historical and commemorative nature during this time. These projects often lead to students participating in local commemorations on May 4th.

In order to encourage participation in the commemoration, the National Committee for May 4th and 5th organises an annual poetry contest for young people and provides tips and suggestions for teachers on its website.

3.     How is the Holocaust defined?

The most widely accepted definition of the Holocaust refers to the Nazi persecution, deportation and mass murder of the Jews in Europe. Some teachers and teaching materials will define the Holocaust as referring to all the victims of Nazi racist ideology, including the Roma and Sinti victims.

4.     Is the Holocaust taught as a subject in its own right, or as part of a broader topic? Explain the reasoning behind this decision.

The Holocaust is taught in lessons on the Second World War. It is mostly placed in a national context (see 1.overview). At the primary school level, the lessons pay some attention to the Nazis' rise to power in Germany, but focus mainly on the occupation of the Netherlands from 1940 to 1945. The characteristic features that are defined for the teaching of the occupation include the worldwide economic crisis and the persecution of Jews.[25]


At the lower secondary school level, the Holocaust is either placed within the context of the history of the Third Reich and the Nazi racist ideology, or it is placed within the context of the history of the occupation, which focuses on how Jews in the Netherlands were registered, isolated, deported and murdered, and on the Dutch collaboration, resistance or acceptance of the Nazi regime.

The Holocaust and the wider history of the Second World War is often taught within the framework of local history, using examples of persecution, resistance and collaboration from the neighbourhoods in which students live; incorporating physical reminders of this history (monuments, authentic sites, buildings, documents in archives) and personal stories. Additional teaching materials play a major role here, whereas the methods still focus on the broader context.

At primary and secondary school level, the Holocaust is sometimes also introduced as part of a project or series of lessons dealing with prejudice, discrimination, (anti)-racism, and the importance of tolerance, acceptance of pluralistic societies etc. In these projects learning from the past - using the Holocaust as an example of what racism can lead to - is as important as learning about the past. Such projects often include a visit to an authentic site or museum.

In 2007, the National Committee for May 4th and 5th carried out research into what kind of knowledge the general public and trainee teachers had of the Second World War.[26] The results reveal that both the general public and students know that Jews were persecuted during the war, but only a few know that Communists were also a target for persecution.

The overall conclusion drawn from the research was that the level of knowledge is sufficient.

However, there are some common misconceptions.  For example, one in five from both categories also believe Muslims were persecuted. The research also showed that almost 75 percent of the general public believes the persecution of the Jews was one of the causes of the Second World War.[27]

5.     At what age do young people learn about the Holocaust in school? Do students encounter the Holocaust in school more than once? Please provide details.

As stated earlier, Dutch students learn about the Second World War at least twice during their school careers. Students that choose history for their final exams study the Second World War three times. The system is as follows:

1. Every student between 9 and 12 years old studies history at primary school, typically covering the Stone Age to present day in chronological order. The curriculum is based on ten "eras". The Holocaust is mentioned within the time frame of "World Wars".

2. When students enter secondary school (aged 12) they start a similar process, covering history from 3,000 BC until today.

Most students go to a pre-vocational secondary school, VMBO, (approx. 50 percent). Many pre-vocational secondary schools don't teach history as subject in its own right but combine it with geography and economics in 'People and Society' classes (Mens and Maatschappij). Students who follow this broader subject generally only get a few lessons on the Second World War. Of the students at VMBO level, only 30 percent take final exams in history. Almost all of these students attend the highest stream of pre-vocational secondary school (VMBO-t). The remaining 70 percent have history or 'People and Society' lessons for one or two years.

Students who are in a HAVO or VWO secondary school (the tiers which prepare those planning to go into higher education) have history classes for at least three years and learn more about the Second World War.

3. Students who choose history for their final exams (30 percent of VMBO-students, 60 to 70 percent of HAVO and 50-60 percent of VWO students) tackle each of the periods of history for the third time during the last two or three years of their secondary school education. This means that they study the Second World War and the Holocaust again.

6.     How many hours are allocated to teaching and learning about the Holocaust in schools?

There are no fixed rules for the amount of time that must be dedicated to the Holocaust (or any other subject). In general, it's possible to say:

- The number of hours spent on teaching the Holocaust depends a great deal on the personal interest of the teacher. Some schools organise projects related to the Second World War or the Holocaust that last several weeks. However, some teachers or schools only dedicate a few hours to this period in history.

Little research has been carried out into history education in primary schools. It is estimated that 1.5 hours a week are spent on history during the last three years of primary school.[28]


Primary school history textbooks reveal differences in the time allocated to the teaching of the Second World War. Some textbooks are very slim, and they are likely to be used in schools that have chosen to spend a lot of time on other subjects like mathematics or reading and writing. Other schools that spend more time on history education use more detailed textbooks.

Many schools make use of additional materials on the Second World War, which deal with local history or come from institutions that have national outreach programmes. But there is no research available on the impact these additional materials have on history education. It is most likely that a majority of teachers choose to expand their textbook-based lessons with additional materials - including by showing films - and in this way spend more hours on the history of the Second World War and the Holocaust.

At the secondary level, schools will spend six to 20 history lessons on the period from 1933 to 1945, over a total of four to six years. The time devoted to this period depends partly on the level of the students, and partly on the textbook used, and is determined by the teacher's choices. In the lower VMBO-tier, students only have two years for the whole "era" curriculum. The Second World War is taught for one or two hours a week in around six lessons. In the VMBO-t, HAVO/VWO tiers, the amount of time increases because there are more year-groups available (three to six). Final exams students in all tiers also have more time.

Although some schools work on cross curricular-projects connected to the Second World War, they are the exception.

7.     In what areas of study (history, literature, sociology, and theology) is the Holocaust taught? In each case, briefly outline the rationale for teaching the Holocaust in this particular subject area.

History

The Holocaust is taught within the framework of 20th century history, which deals with totalitarian regimes in general. More specifically, it is taught within the history of the Third Reich and the racist ideology of the Nazis, as well as within the history of the occupation of the Netherlands.

Literature

The years of occupation form an important theme in Dutch post-Second World War literature. Many Dutch novelists have written at least one, but often several, novels that focus on themes such as collaboration with and resistance to Nazi occupation, the persecution of the Jews in the Netherlands, betrayal of and/or help for the Jews and other victims of persecution etc. Several successful novels have been made into films. Although there aren't any Dutch textbooks that deal exclusively with these themes, some teachers spend time discussing how different authors present this period in history.

The diary of Anne Frank is often read in Dutch lessons. In 2006, the Anne Frank House carried out research in this area, and found that 40 percent of girls of aged 15 to 18 years old have read the diary, compared with 13 percent of boys. The majority read the book at home, and a small percentage read it at school. Teachers describe the diary as good teaching material. Ninety-seven percent had heard of the book.[29]

Students often read literature about the Second World War during foreign language classes, like German, French or English. Some schools have launched projects that compare literature about the Second World War in different languages, so the students see the war from the perspective of several countries.

Religious Education

Some schools cover the history of the Holocaust during lessons on the history of Judaism. All the textbooks on religious education contain a chapter on Judaism and Jewish history. Most of them devote a few paragraphs to the history of anti-Semitism and the Holocaust. Many teachers spend more time on this subject, by showing films and discussing the Holocaust in class, but religious studies is not a mandatory subject in the Netherlands. Some schools offer it and therefore teach the Holocaust within the framework of the subject, but many schools choose not to offer religious education.

Social studies/citizenship education

In some secondary schools, students can opt to take social studies in final exams. The majority of students discuss the Second World War at one point during this class. The connection between today's multi-ethnic and culturally diverse society, issues of intolerance and discrimination and isolation, or the use of minorities as scapegoats in society in the 1930s, are all part of the public debate in the Netherlands and are therefore also discussed at school. Holocaust education, however, isn't part of the social studies curriculum.

8.     What historical, pedagogical and didactic training is provided to teachers of the Holocaust at either the university level or the professional development level in your country?

There is no standard teacher training on the Holocaust but many institutions (i.e. universities, museums and memorials, the History Teachers' Association) organise conferences and workshops focusing on education about the Second World War and the Holocaust. Universities organise conferences, often in cooperation with institutions. For example, the DIA (German Institute) organised a conference in 2010: 'Trained Memory' on how the Holocaust is dealt with in education with the fourth post-war generation. Teachers can also participate in the schemes outlined in the answer to question 9, where there is often an educational focus.

In recent years, teachers have had fewer opportunities to do in-service teacher training because they have to adhere to a strict annual programme and can't easily take leave from teaching their classes.

Institutions tend to provide didactic training along with the launch of new educational materials. These trainings focus on didactic principles and motivating teachers to use the materials. Some institutions like the National Liberation Museum in Groesbeek offer teachers a discounted entry fee so they're able to improve their knowledge.

In 2003, the Centre for Holocaust and Genocide Studies (CHGS) was established. In 2010 it became part of the NIOD- Institute for War, Holocaust and Genocide Studies.[30] The centre's tasks include academic research and training. It offers at least one academic training for teachers and trainee teachers annually, during the week of Holocaust Memorial Day. HMD is the starting point for initiatives at several schools and universities for activities that focus on the Holocaust and other genocides. The CHGS supports activities of teacher training institutions.

Since 2003, the CHGS has offered university courses on Holocaust and Genocide Studies at both the bachelor (BA) and masters (MA) level. In 2010, 75 students followed a BA course on Holocaust and Genocide Studies and Transitional Justice. Twenty students subscribed for the MA course on Holocaust and Genocide Studies in 2010. Several other universities offer courses on the Holocaust, for example VU University.

There are two university chairs in regard to Holocaust education. The University of Amsterdam hosts the chair of Holocaust and Genocide studies, and VU University since 2011 the Westerbork chair.

The CHGS organises trips to Yad Vashem for teachers and teacher trainers, in cooperation with the Centre for Information and Documentation on Israel (CIDI). In 2008 and 2009 two one-week study trips took place and a new visit is planned for 2011. Twenty-five people participate each time, including trainee teachers (18 percent). Part of the follow-up to the seminar is offered via the website www.platformeducatiewo2.nl. The website is hosted by CIDI and informs teachers of new developments and provides a space for sharing experiences.

Several authentic sites (Camp Westerbork Memorial Center, the Anne Frank House) regularly hold seminars for teachers in primary and secondary education. Also NIOD organises public events that aim at (trainee) teachers. In 2009, a hundred Dutch and Ukrainian teachers visited the conference 'Holocaust by bullets'. The annual lectures of this institute attract yearly 300 listeners.

In addition in 2010 the Hollandsche Schouwburg and the Jewish Historical Museum (Joods Historisch Museum) have organized a seminar for teachers in Jewish schools about Holocaust education. For this specific teacher group a trip to Yad Vashem is planned in 2011. The Hollandsche Schouwburg also provides regular half day workshops for trainee teachers.

The Dutch committee for the former Ravensbrück camp has for several years organised trips for trainee teachers to the former camps, in cooperation with the Camp Ravensbrück, Camp Westerbork  Memorial Centre and National Support Point for Guest Speakers. One of the challenges that trainee teachers face is the cultural diversity of their students. This program focuses on this issue.[31]

In 2010 the 'Guidelines for Teaching about the Holocaust', developed by the Education Working Group of the ITF, were translated and adapted for Dutch teachers. The brochure (Lesgeven over de Holocaust. Aanbevelingen voor docenten) includes examples of good practise from Dutch institutions. It is given to teachers at conferences and when they visit memorial sites or museums.

Shared history and peer education

In recent years, several teacher training institutes have focused on the 'shared history' of the Second World War. In response to the cultural diversity and immigration history of many students in Dutch classrooms, there has been a new focus on the Second World War as a conflict that raged in several continents and which had, and still has, universal implications. Following incidents in Amsterdam involving unruly young people during national commemoration ceremonies, a debate took place in the national media on the lack of knowledge among students with immigrant backgrounds and the problems some teachers face when teaching the Holocaust.

The project entitled 'Putting the Second World War in Perspective' offers schools the services of peer educators who give a series of six lessons; three on the Second World War and the Holocaust, and three on the conflict in the Middle East.[32] The peer educators teach in pairs, one Jewish and one Muslim, and in this way are able to address tension related to the conflict in the Middle East and prejudices in the Netherlands within a framework of dialogue.

The 'War on Five Continents' project (University Amsterdam together with FORUM, Institute for Multicultural Issues) focuses on the Second World War in countries where immigrants in the Netherlands come from. [33] By providing teachers with knowledge and didactic approaches to teaching the Second World War in an inclusive way, the project aims to connect pupils from various backgrounds to history and to the concept of commemoration.

In 2009, the Anne Frank House organised an international meeting for experts called 'Teaching the Holocaust in Diverse Classrooms'. The premise for the meeting was that teaching the Holocaust in classes with students from many different religious or ethnic backgrounds is a common international challenge. The different approaches and examples of good practice that were discussed were published in a 'Intercultural Education', a professional journal. One of the approaches generally accepted as good practice was peer education that aims to train young people to teach their peers about sensitive topics.[34]

In 2011, the 'Holocaust Education in European Perspective', a three year exchange programme was launched. In this programme, teachers from Poland and the Netherlands exchange good practice in teaching the Holocaust and relating the past to the present day lives of students. There is a special focus on educational approaches at memorial sites and museums. The programme is run by the State Museum Auschwitz-Birkenau and the Anne Frank House along with many other institutions in both countries.

Occasionally, other institutions organise conferences for teachers. For example, the 'Historic News' history magazine (Historisch Nieuwsblad) organised a 'weekend full of history classes' in March, 2011.[35] Classes about the Second World War in the Netherlands were given by well-known Dutch historians. One of the subjects covered was the Holocaust in the Netherlands. The Association of History Teachers (VGN) holds an annual conference, which includes a workshop about the Second World War or the Holocaust almost every time.

8b) How many teacher-training sessions are held each year, and how many teachers are involved?

There is no standard in-service training. This can partly be explained by the limited time allotted to teachers for in-service training. History teachers mostly follow courses offered in connection with the subjects set for the national history exam, which change every two years. (In 2010: Dynamics and Stagnation in the Dutch Republic, Decolonisation and the Cold War in Vietnam)

8c) What funding is available for training in Holocaust teaching in your country?

There is no structural funding available for training in the teaching of the Holocaust in the Netherlands but government agencies and private foundations do fund projects aimed at teachers on a project basis. NIOD receives structural funding for research, public events, teaching and education

9.     Has your country instituted a national Holocaust Memorial Day? If so, how is this day marked and commemorated? What difficulties have you encountered in establishing this day of remembrance in the national consciousness?

The Netherlands has a diverse landscape of remembrance, with different memorial dates throughout the year, connected to different victim groups and histories. January 27th is acknowledged as the day of remembrance of the liberation of Auschwitz, but has no official national status. At the Hollandsche Schouwburg a commemoration is held each year for Jom HaShoa that is attended mostly by members of the Jewish community.

The official national memorial service for all war victims since the outbreak of the Second World War takes place on May 4th. The ceremony brings together victims groups to share their personal stories, memories and histories. The liberation of the Netherlands is celebrated on May 5th, as is the fact that we continue to live in freedom.

Holocaust Memorial Day

A commemoration ceremony is held at the Auschwitz memorial in Amsterdam on the last Sunday of January. The wreath-laying ceremony is attended by the mayor of Amsterdam and representatives of the government and different organisations. This ceremony is organised by the Dutch Auschwitz Committee (Nederlands Auschwitz Comité). The committee existed long before the UN instituted Holocaust Memorial Day, as did the commemoration of the victims of Auschwitz at the Auschwitz memorial.

On January 27th the Netherlands Auschwitz Committee, Centre for Holocaust and Genocide Studies and the SVB Bank and PUR (Pension and Benefit Board) organise the annual Auschwitz - Never again lecture. [36]

The Centre for Holocaust and Genocide Studies and the CIJO (the youth division of the CIDI) have taken the initiative to organise events around Holocaust Memorial Day in the Netherlands. In 2007, they decided to structuralise this international day of remembrance and ever since, several museums and universities have also been involved in organising mostly educational programmes in the week around Holocaust Memorial Day.[37]

A diverse remembrance landscape

Alongside May 4th and the 5th, over 30 other days of commemoration are held annually on different dates and at different locations throughout the country. Each of these commemorations focuses on a different victim group - civilian as well as military victims - or historic event from to the Second World War and/or other wars and more recent peacekeeping operations. These memorial days have a supra-regional character and are mostly coordinated by organisations with a personal connection to the victim group or historic event. Some of these memorials are coordinated by organisations representing first generation war witnesses/war victims. A few examples of these commemorations are stated below. Because different parts of the Netherlands were liberated at different times - the southern provinces were liberated in the autumn of 1944 - different parts of the country also celebrate their own liberation and commemorate their victims on different dates throughout the year. These events take place alongside the national days of remembrance and liberation.

The commemoration of Jom HaShoa is held at the Hollandsche Schouwburg. A special children's commemoration is also held at the Hollandsche Schouwburg, where young people can commemorate in their own way.

On May 4th the commemoration at the Hollandsche Schouwburg focusses on the victims of the Shoah (Holocaust) and includes Jewish commemorative aspects. The ceremony has grown in recent years from an intimate ceremony, to a public event with a large and still growing number of participants.

Other important commemorations that are annually given national news coverage include February 25th (commemoration of the 1941 February strike, a public protest against the emerging anti-Jewish measures), and commemorations in the former Westerbork and Vught concentration camps.

August 15th is another important day of commemoration in the Netherlands, as it marks the end of World War Two in the Kingdom of the Netherlands. On this date in 1945, Japan capitulated and the Dutch East Indies (now the Republic of Indonesia) returned to Dutch sovereignty. The civilian and military victims of the war against Japan and the Japanese occupation are honoured on August 15th at the Indies Monument (Indisch Monument) in The Hague with a national ceremony in the presence of the prime minister.

In 2005, National Veterans Day (Nationale Veteranendag) was instituted as a day of recognition of the efforts of veterans, both of the Second World War and more recent conflicts. National Veterans Day is celebrated in The Hague on the last Saturday in June (around June 29th, Prince Bernhard's birthday) and is attended by the Prince of Orange. It is also celebrated locally.

May 4th and 5th
Unlike most countries, the Netherlands sets aside two days for the national remembrance of the victims of war and celebration of the liberation: May 4th and 5th. The National Committee for May 4th and 5th was set up by the government in 1987 and organises the annual national events marking May 4th and 5th.

May 4th National Remembrance Ceremony

On May civilians and soldiers, who have lost their lives since the outbreak of the Second World War, both in wars or in peacekeeping operations are commemorated.

The National Remembrance Ceremony is held in Amsterdam.[38] It starts with a memorial service in the Nieuwe Kerk on Dam Square, which is attended by the Queen, members of parliament and representatives of different groups in society who were affected by the war. Afterwards, a memorial service is held at the National War Memorial (Nationaal Monument) in Amsterdam, where two-minutes of silence are observed and wreaths are laid. This ceremony is broadcast live on television and radio.

May 4th in the local community

Alongside the national memorial service in Amsterdam, almost every municipality holds its own memorial service on May 4th. This tradition of private initiatives emerged spontaneously right after the war. Most of these memorial services are organised by volunteers from local committees and/or local government.

Just before 8pm, people all over the country gather at war memorials in their own communities and a two-minute silence is observed on the stroke of eight o'clock. But most people who observe remembrance day, choose to do so at home, often while watching the memorial service at the National War Memorial in Amsterdam on television.

May 5th

The end of Remembrance Day signals the start of Liberation Day[39]. May 5th is a day of public celebration of the liberation, and freedom. After a day of looking back to the past, this day focuses on freedom now and in the future.

Special Liberation Day events are organised all over the country. May 5th starts with the official launch of the celebrations in a different province each year. Liberation Festivals (Bevrijdingsfestivals) are held in each province - as well as in Amsterdam and The Hague - and together they attract over a million visitors. May 5th concludes in the evening with an open-air classical concert. Traditionally held on the Amstel River in Amsterdam and broadcast live on television, the concert is attended by the Queen and members of the government.

Liberation Day events centre on a different theme each year. The focus from 2011 to 2015 will be on freedom worldwide, as set out in the National Committee for May 4th and 5th policy objectives for the next five years[40].

Support

Recent surveys reveal that the Dutch public wants to continue to mark both occasions: the commemoration of the dead on May 4th and the celebration of the liberation on May 5th.

A large majority of the Dutch population considers these days important. The support for both days is monitored in the National Freedom Survey (Nationaal Vrijheidsonderzoek), which is conducted every year. The 2010 survey reveals that 80 percent of the population believe it is important to have an annual commemoration and celebration. And almost 80 percent of those questioned said it is important that we continue to remember and celebrate in the future.[41]

Digital Monument

The Digital Monument to the Jewish Community in the Netherlands is a permanent commemoration of the Jewish victims of the Holocaust.[42] Educational materials have been developed alongside the Digital monument.

Commemorative trips

Several organizations organise commemorative trips to memorial sites

  • The Dutch Auschwitz Committee (Nederlands Auschwitz Comité) organises an annual commemorative trip to the former concentration camps in Auschwitz, Majdanek and Sobibor. www.auschwitz.nl
  • The Sobibor Foundation organises two annual trips. One is a commemorative visit - Kaddish is spoken - to the former site of the extermination camps. The other trip is educational, and is aimed at students and employees of war and remembrance organisations. The trip includes a visit to the former camps of Aktion Reinhardt. Participants come from the Netherlands, Poland and Germany. www.stichtingsobibor.nl
  • The Natzweiler Committee organises an annual trip to the site of the former camp for survivors and other people who are interested. www.natzweiler.nl
  • The National Dachau Committee organises an annual visit to the former concentration camp for the May 4th remembrance ceremony there. In addition, the committee organises a commemoration at the Dutch memorial in Amsterdam at the end of April. www.dachau.nl
  • The Women's Committee of Ravensbrück organises an annual remembrance ceremony at the monument in Amsterdam. It also organises educational trips for (future) educators in cooperation with Camp Westerbork Memorial Centre and the National Support Point for Guest Speakers (Steunpunt Gastsprekers). www.ravensbruck.nl
  • The Organisation for Survivors and Relatives of the Former Mauthausen camp (Stichting Vriendenkring Mauthausen) organises an annual commemoration in April in the Netherlands, and a commemorative trip to the former concentration camp in May. Besides this, the organisation holds a commemoration ceremony on September 14th to remember the round-up of Jews in 1941, many of whom died in the Mauthausen camp. www.mauthausen.nl. These trips are likely to end after 2010, because the participants and organisers are becoming too elderly.
  • The Organisation for Survivors and Relatives of the Former Neuengamme camp (Vriendenkring Neuengamme) organises an annual trip to the former concentration camp. Participants include relatives or other people who are interested in the history of the camp. www.vriendenkringneuengamme.nl.
  • Until recently, the Foundation for Friends of Sachsenhausen (Stichting Nederlandse Vriendenkring Sachsenhausen) organised an annual trip to the former camps of Sachsenhausen, Ravensbrück and Bergen Belsen, but the foundation was dissolved in 2009.
  • In 2009, the Think and Commemorate Foundation (Stichting Denk en Herdenk) began to organise trips to Poland for students. Over a four-day period, the group visits the former camp of Treblinka and a small Polish town where all the Jewish inhabitants were killed in a nearby forest and then participates in the March of the Living. The aim is to make young people aware of the atrocities of the Holocaust. www.denkenherdenk.nl.
  • A project has been launched in the southern province of Limburg, to make young people aware of the consequences of racism, discrimination, exclusion, violence, and intolerance. It includes a trip to the former concentration camps of Auschwitz and Buchenwald and was initiated by National War and Resistance Museum Overloon and the Palet Foundation for Multicultural Development. www.welkom.nu.
  • An annual 'Friendship and Reconciliation' trip is organised to commemorate the Second World War in the former Dutch East Indies (now Indonesia) by a committee set up especially for this purpose in 2006.
  • Each year, the Japanese government covers the travel costs of 14 people who lived through the war in the Dutch East Indies. A special committee continues the work done by the EKNJ Foundation for ex-POWs (Stichting Ex-krijgsgevangenen en nabestaanden Japan), which organised trips between 1985 and 1995, also financed by the Japanese government. The EKNJ was dissolved in 2005.
  • The War Graves Foundation (Oorlogsgravenstichting) organises several trips each year for relatives of the victims of war, enabling them to honour their lost ones at the cemeteries where they are buried. Destinations are mostly Thailand and Indonesia. Dutch descendants of war-victims of camps in Germany are eligible for tour tickets through the War Graves Foundation, funded by the German State.

10. Has your country established a national Holocaust memorial and/or museum? How many students visit this memorial/museum each year?

There is no Holocaust museum as such in the Netherlands but there are several sites which play an important symbolic and educational role in the remembrance of, and education about, the Holocaust. However, the Dutch Theater in Amsterdam is planning to fill this gap in the near future by increasingly turning the exhibition venue into a national Holocaust Museum.

Camp Westerbork was the 'Judendurchgangslager' (transit camp) for the Netherlands; nearly all the Jews, Roma and Sinti were sent to Westerbork before deportation from the country. In Amsterdam, Jews were held at the Hollandsche Schouwburg (Dutch Theater) before being sent to Westerbork. The Camp Vught National Memorial was a concentration camp for political prisoners and Jews. The Anne Frank House is a museum dedicated to the remembrance and heritage of Anne Frank, a Jewish girl in hiding with her family and four other people in a house on a canal in Amsterdam, where the museum is now located. These institutions all have exhibitions and educational programmes that focus on the Holocaust.

In 1947, three former concentration camps in the Netherlands - Westerbork, Vught and Amersfoort - were designated national monuments, but it took a long time before memorial sites were established. The Camp Westerbork  Memorial Centre was opened in 1983. The Camp Vught National Memorial was opened to the public in 1990 and expanded in 2002 to include new exhibition rooms and educational facilities. A visitors centre opened at the site of the former Amersfoort concentration camp in 2004.

Museums

The Jewish History Museum in Amsterdam dedicates a large part of its exhibition 'Jews in the twentieth century' on the Holocaust. The museum had 122625 visitors in 2009.

There are five 'Resistance museums' which focus both on resistance during the Second World War and on the Dutch collaboration and accommodation of the Nazis during the occupation (Aalten, Amsterdam, Gouda, Leeuwarden and Rotterdam).

Fort de Bilt near Utrecht provides 'peace-education' and also focuses on resistance to oppressing forces. The Fort of Democracy (Fort van de Democratie) teaches pupils about democracy.

There are several museums at the sites of battles, for example the National War and Resistance Museum in Overloon, Airborne Museum Hartenstein, and the National Liberation Museum in Groesbeek. Although the military history of the site is the central theme in these museums, they also present the history of the Second World War in a broader sense, including the persecution of the Jews and other victim groups, and collaboration with and resistance to the Nazis. In 2010, a plan was presented to create a new museum about the Second World War in the Netherlands, the result of cooperation between the three war museums. They will remain open as sites, but want to centralise their knowledge and historical objects.

Special attention to the history of the Dutch East Indies during the Second World War is paid at The Indies Commemoration Centre Bronbeek (Indisch Herinneringscentrum Bronbeek) that opened recently. The Netherlands Ministry for Health, Welfare and Sport was the initiator of this memorial centre.

The directors of the main memorial sites and museum meet with each other twice a year to discuss common concerns. The educational staff of these museums also meets twice a year to discuss approaches to education on the Second World War and the Holocaust and the curators of the museums have regular meetings to discuss topics in connection to their collections, such as preservation and acquisition. There are also occasionally joint conferences for educational staff at the memorial and museums.

National History Museum

In 2008, plans were launched for a new National History Museum. This sparked a national debate about the demand for, and proposed content of, a national history museum. After a heated debate, it was decided to build the museum in Arnhem, but in October 2010 the government withdrew the funding for building a new facility. The National History Museum is now a digital museum, but a physical museum is still planned when funding is found.

The museums and memorial sites that have been outlined here and which can be found in the diagrams and graphs below, all have professional staff, although many also work with volunteers too. [43] There are many (up to 100) small local museums, mostly run by volunteers and they are often open only in the weekends or during holidays.

Websites

There are several websites which can be regarded as museums, such as www.scholtenhuis.nl, a digital version of the former German Intelligence Headquarters in Groningen or www.tweedewereldoorlog.nl. The Anne Frank House has created a virtual museum, enabling people all over the world to visit the Secret Annexe online.[44] The Digital Monument has a community of over 7500 members.[45] More than 100.000 people visit this website each year.

11. Please estimate the percentage of students in your country who visit authentic sites, and list three primary sources of funding available in your country for visits to authentic sites.

In 2010, nearly 200,000 students visited a war(related) museum (see 10). It is likely that a majority of students visit at least one memorial site or museum during their schooling.

Funding

Most sites visited are within the country and schools fund the costs of the visit (travel costs, programme costs and in some cases entrance fees for the museum) from their own budget. Local councils and private foundations also cover (some of) the costs. In some cases the local "Orange Union" will help finance the costs. [46]

Sites abroad

A small number of schools visit concentration camps in Germany or Poland. These trips are sometimes arranged by organisations set up by former concentration camp prisoners. The Ravensbrück Committee, for example, has taken schools groups to Ravensbrück. Such projects are financed by different foundations and with local and national government support. This is also the case for the individual schools that organise trips to former concentration camps.

12. What are the three major textbooks used in teaching the Holocaust in your country? How many pages do your school textbooks allocate to the Holocaust, and which aspects do they focus on?

Teachers can choose from a wide variety of textbooks at all levels of education in the Netherlands. The textbooks either choose to look at the Holocaust within the context of the history of the Third Reich, or they focus on the persecution of the Jews in the Netherlands within the context of the history of the occupation.

The textbooks written for use in primary schools look at the Second World War. All of them contain information about the occupation of the Netherlands, Hitler and the Holocaust, although the word 'Holocaust' is not always used. The term 'Jodenvervolging' (persecution of the Jews) is often used to describe the process of persecution and genocide. Some textbooks pay little attention to the deportation of victims (only stating numbers, without explaining what happened). Textbooks written for secondary education contain a chapter about the Second World War. Textbooks designed for use in vocational schools are somewhat shorter, and students who take their final exams in history learn more.

The textbooks most used in the early years of secondary education (when almost all student study history) are MeMo, Living History, Feniks and History Workshop. The four most-used textbook series at level three HAVO (average student age is 14 to 15 years old) are compared here.

MeMo

MeMo dedicates 18 pages to the Second World War. The chapter is divided into the following subjects:
- How national socialism became powerful
- The course of the Second World War
- The Netherlands and the Second World War (including the Holocaust)
- Who was Adolf Hitler?
- The rise of Japan

Living History

Living History (Sprekend Verleden) includes 29 pages on the Second World War. This chapter is divided into the following subjects:
- Causes of the Second World War
- Changes in warfare
- Old and new war techniques
- The Netherlands under German occupation
- Consequences of the Second World War

In addition to this chapter, the book includes informative texts on the following: Munich 1938, the military course of Second World War, films from and about the war, famous music, press and propaganda, Nuremburg, Anne Frank, Remembrance, the NSB and moral dilemmas like: "What would you do?"

Feniks

Feniks dedicates 25 pages to a chapter called 'Interbellum and the Second World War'. This chapter is divided into the following subjects:
- The Treaty of Versailles
- Economic crisis
- National Socialism and Fascism (including Hitler)
- The Second World War (a series of military facts)
- The occupation of the Netherlands (including some references to the Holocaust)
- Remembrance
- War in Asia

History Workshop

History Workshop (Geschiedenis Werkplaats) dedicates 28 pages to a chapter entitled 'The Second World War'. This chapter is divided into the following subjects:
- War in Europe
- The occupation of the Netherlands
- The Holocaust
- War outside Europe
- Learning from the past (about the UN and remembrance)
- Wilhelmina's war (about the Dutch royal family during the war)
- The world of Albert Einstein
- The Atlantic Wall

13. What strategies of differentiation are typically used to make the study of the Holocaust accessible to students of different ages and with different learning needs?

Age appropriate

One way in which teaching materials are adapted to students' ages - and in this way aim to be age appropriate - is by telling the personal stories of people the same age as the students. The history and life of Anne Frank is the most popular example used to bring the Holocaust to the attention of children. In the last two decades, several projects have focused on collecting stories from Second World War eyewitnesses. Some are recorded on DVD, some are published on websites.

For each age group, it's possible to find accounts by eyewitnesses who were the same age during the war as the students being taught. One example is the government funded "13 during the war" series made by SchoolTV, the Dutch public broadcaster for education. It focuses on what it was like to be a child during wartime. SchoolTV also developed materials for use in the classroom to accompany the programmes.

Different learning needs

The vast majority of additional learning materials concerning the Second World War and the Holocaust are developed for students in the highest tier of education. In recent years, more materials suitable for the lower tier students have been developed. One example is the 'The Family Secret' comic book (2003), which covers the main themes in the history of the occupation through the lives of one Dutch family and their friends. The comic book goes hand in hand with lessons on the historical photos that many of the drawings in the comic were based on. Later comic books by these authors called 'The Search' and 'The Return' are used in all tiers of secondary education because the teaching materials that accompany the books contain assignments for students from different tiers.

Some teachers feel that it is difficult to engage second-generation immigrant students in the history of the Holocaust, as it is not 'their history'. Others dispute that this is a real issue from their own experience in teaching in diverse classrooms. From the 1990s onwards, many teaching materials have included the history of the Second World War in countries where immigrants in the Netherlands have come from. For example, teaching materials and exhibitions may focus on Caribbean and Indonesian students who resisted the Nazis in the Netherlands, or may focus on the history of the role of Moroccans in the Allied forces and the role of the Moroccan king, Mohammed V, in protecting the Jews in his country from anti-Jewish measures implemented by the French Vichy government.

Most materials are published on the Internet. In recent years, many Dutch websites have started to provide information on the Holocaust for students. Many institutions (authentic sites & museums) offer background information that can be used for projects. The virtual museum for Second World War Studies (www.tweedewereldoorlog.nl) is the portal for all these initiatives. The National Committee for May 4th and 5th also provides an overview of teaching materials about the Second World War on its website where all materials for various ages, levels etc. can be found.[47]

14. To what extent, and in what ways, is your country's own national history integrated into the teaching of the Holocaust?

The history of the occupation is central to the teaching of the Holocaust in the Netherlands. Two approaches can be found in school textbooks: Either the Holocaust is included in chapters about Nazi Germany and the racist state, or it is included in the chapter on the history of the occupation of the Netherlands and the deportation and mass murder of the Jews from the Netherlands. To a certain extent, this focus on what happened in the Netherlands is limiting. For example, the NGOs that offer additional teaching materials and school textbooks rarely discuss the history of the ghettos in Eastern Europe or the 'killing squads' (Einsatzgruppen). The focus is very much on Western Europe and specifically the national context. The Dutch perspective - with the main focus on what took place in the Netherlands during the years of occupation - leaves little room for a worldwide perspective. Few teachers take a wider approach to discuss the Holocaust in a European context.

15. What are the three major obstacles to teaching and learning about the Holocaust in your country?

The Dutch educational system has repeatedly undergone changes in the last two decades. One of the many consequences has been the weakening of history as a subject in schools. Although history is a compulsory exam subject for most students, due to a change in the education system, they have fewer lessons than before. Schools have more freedom to determine the number of hours allocated to history lessons. But unlike before, the Holocaust is now explicitly listed as a topic in the curriculum, with the characteristic feature "Racism and discrimination which led to genocide, especially regarding Jews".

Teachers and educational institutions aren't always sufficiently aware of the changes in the Dutch student population. Not only is there a longer time span between today and the Second World War, the population of the Netherlands has also changed significantly. Students often have different frames of reference from their teachers. One example: for teachers, references to 'war' usually mean the Second World War; for students, 'war' often refers to more recent wars. Most teachers have a Dutch background and have been brought up, within their families, or more generally within the Dutch society, with a strong sense of the Second World War as a turning point in history. Many students, especially in larger cities, have diverse cultural, religious and ethnic backgrounds. In many families, immigration has been the most important turning point.

A number of projects have been established to enable teachers to tackle the subject from another angle. "War on five continents" aims to interest students by showing them the war wasn't only a European phenomenon, but is also part of the history of the former colonies (Suriname, Dutch Antilles, former West Indies), and the countries of origin of most immigrants.

The project focuses firstly on the development of materials about the lesser-known aspects of the war, which can be used in the classroom, and secondly on training teachers to use the new materials.

The "Free 2 Choose" project (Anne Frank House) deals with human rights that clash and challenges students to listen to one another and to debate, without forming simple judgments. The "Adopt a Monument" project (National Committee for May 4th and 5th) gives children the chance to become more involved with what happened close to their school, by organising or attending a commemoration at a war monument in their own neighbourhoods.

The lack of research on what is taught in relation to the Holocaust and how the Holocaust is taught, is a limiting factor for all those involved in developing teaching materials and offering teacher training seminars. There is a general understanding of what teachers are doing and which materials they are using, but there is no substantial data or real knowledge of the situation.

Although many materials are available which deal with the Second World War and the Holocaust, not all teachers are aware of the choices available. The implementation of the materials in the education system is often a weak link.

The number of eyewitnesses is decreasing. In both education and remembrance, new approaches are being explored.

The Second World War has been very present in the lives of many people, but the new generation of students, with diverse backgrounds, won't have a personal connection to this history.

Sources

Literature

  • D.G. Hondius, Oorlogslessen. Onderwijs over de oorlog sinds 1945, Amsterdam 2010.

•            M.de Keizer & M. Plomp, Een open zenuw. Hoe wij ons de Tweede Wereldoorlog herinneren, Amsterdam 2010.

For further reading:

  • E. Captain and K. Ribbens, Tonen van de oorlog. Toekomst voor het museale erfgoed van de Tweede Wereldoorlog, Amsterdam 2011.
  • R. Van Ginkel, Rondom de Stilte. Herdenkingscultuur in Nederland, Amsterdam 2011.

Methods

  • MeMo
  • Living History
  • Feniks
  • History Workshop

Websites

Amongst others:


http://histoforum.digischool.nl

www.4en5mei.nl

www.airbornemuseum.nl

www.annefrank.org

www.auschwitz.nl

www.bevrijdingsmuseum.nl

www.chgs.nl

www.dachau.nl

www.denkenherdenk.nl

www.entoen.nu

www.fortvandedemocratie.n

www.historischnieuwsblad.nl

www.hollandscheschouwburg.nl

www.holocaustmemorialday.nl

www.holocausttaskforce.org

www.innl.nl

www.jhm.n

www.joodsmonument.nl

www.kampamersfoort.nl

www.kampwesterbork.nl

www.markt12.nl

www.mauthausen.nl

www.museon.nl

www.natzweiler.nl

www.netwerkoorlogsbronnen.nl

www.niod.nl

www.nmkampvught.nl

www.ogs.nl

www.onderwijsnieuwsdienst.nl

www.oorlogsmusea.nl

www.oorlogsmuseum.nl

www.ovgc.nl

www.ovmrotterdam.nl

www.platformeducatiewo2.nl

www.ravensbruck.nl

www.retourtjesachsenhausen.nl

www.slo.nl

www.stichtingsobibor.nl

www.tweedewereldoorlog.nl

www.verzetsmuseum-zh.nl

www.verzetsmuseum.nl

www.verzetsmuseum.org

www.vgnkleio.nl

www.vredeseducatie.nl

www.vriendenkringneuengamme.nl

www.welkom.nu

www.wo2online.nl



Reports and magazines

  • Van Drie, Lochtenberg, van der Meijden, van Riessen: "When was that date?" Building and assessing a frame of reference in the Netherlands. In: Teaching History 137, December 2009
  • World War II and its aftermath in the Netherlands. Ministry for Health, Welfare and Sport, June 2009.
  • Heritage of War - Results of the Programme, Ministry for Health, Welfare and Sport, August 2010.
  • Key figures 2004-2008, Ministry of Education, Culture and Science.
  • Nationaal Comité 4 en 5 mei, Kennisonderzoek.
  • Anne Frank House, Dagboekeducatie, Karin Laarakkers, 2006.
  • Kleio

The Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sports,  department OHW commissioned the National Committee for May 4th and 5th to write this country report.

Text: Tessa de Leur and Inger Schaap, editor: Liesbeth van Oostenbruggen.

With many thanks to the numerous people who have provided the authors with information.



[1] www.netwerkoorlogsbronnen.nl

[2] SLO, vakdossier geschiedenis 2010, p. 11

[3] See also question 12.

[4] www.entoen.nu

[5] "In this learning area, pupils orientate on themselves, on how people relate to each other, how they solve problems, and how they give meaning to their existence. (..) At the same time, society, in which the children are growing up, is making its demands. Children are fulfilling, and will fulfill, tasks and roles, for which education is preparing them. These concern the role of consumer, the role of traffic participant, and the role of citizen in a democratic constitutional state. Knowledge about and insight in important values and standards, and knowing how to act accordingly, are preconditions for coexistence. Respect and tolerance are forms of these. (...) They develop a historic worldview. This means they have knowledge of historic events in parts of the world and of chronology. Pupils learn to continually update their world view (about themselves and the world) by means of current topics." www.slo.nl/primair/leergebieden/wereldorientatie/tijd/

[de canon in het primair onderwijs]

[6] Primary education

Man and society:

36: The pupils learn about the essentials of Dutch and European politics and citizen's duties.

Time:

51: The pupils learn to use simple historic sources and learn to handle time indications and arrangements.

52: The pupils learn about the characteristic aspects of the following eras: hunters and farmers; Greeks and Romans; monks and knights; cities and states; explorers and reformers; kings and regents; revolutions and periwigs; commoners and steam engines; the World Wars and the Holocaust; television and the computer.

53: The pupils learn about important historic persons and events from Dutch history and are able to connect these with examples from world history.

Secondary education:

asking questions and doing research (36, 39), placing phenomena in time and space (37, 38), using sources (40, 41, 42), and the organization of themes concerning content (42 - 47) from nearby and small-scale to faraway and large-scale. Different core objectives concretize the schools' obligation to teach good citizenship.

36. The pupil learns to ask meaningful questions about social issues and phenomena, take a substantiated point of view concerning these, defend it, and deal with criticism in a respectful way.

37. The pupil learns to use a framework of ten periods to correctly place events, developments, and persons. The pupil learns about the characteristic aspects of the following eras:

- era of hunters and farmers (prehistory up to 3000 BC);

- era of the Greeks and Romans (3000 BC - 500 AD);

- era of monks and knights (500 - 1000 AD);

- era of cities and states (1000 - 1500 AD);

- era of explorers and reformers (1500 - 1600 AD);

- era of kings and regents (1600 - 1700 AD);

- era of revolutions and periwigs (1700 - 1800 AD);

- era of commoners and steam engines (1800 - 1900 AD);

- era of the World Wars (1900 - 1950 AD); and

- the television and computer age (1950 AD - today);

The pupil will at least learn to connect events and developments in the twentieth century (including the World Wars and the Holocaust) and present-day developments.

[7] World War II and its aftermath in the Netherlands. Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport. Department of Victims and Remembrance WWII. June 2009. Page 30.

[8] World War II and its aftermath in the Netherlands. Ministry of Health,Welfare and Sport. Department of Victims and Remembrance WWII. June 2009. Page 29.

[9] Hondius, D.G., Oorlogslessen, page 259.

[10] Information based on website www.slo.nl

[11] Information by Herman and Annelies van Rens, initiators. Hondius, D.G. Oorlogslessen, page 268.

[12] May 4th is a day of commemoration and May 5th is Liberation Day.

[13] www.4en5mei.nl/educatie/basisonderwijs/nationaal_aandenken

[14] This journal is made by the Anne Frank House in cooperation with the publisher YoungCrowds.

[15] In 2011 the Journal is accompanied with a game that focusses on prejudices.

[16] The eyewitnesses who are invited in the classrooms could be survivors of the Holocaust, former resistance fighters, and others. www.steunpuntgastsprekers.nl

[17] Between 1942 and 1943 Jews from Amsterdam and surrounding districts were obliged to report at the Hollandsche Schouwburg before being deported. www.hollandscheschouwburg.nl/en

[18] See: list of websites

[19] The Camp Vught National Memorial provides materials for both primary and secondary education. The program can be adjusted to the class, by focussing on the region where the school is located. www.nmkampvught.nl

[20] www.4en5mei.nl/educatie/educatieve_materialen

[21] www.retourtjesachenhausen.nl

[22] www.ovcg.nl/nl/educatie/reminiscentie/

[23] www.annefrank.org/en/Worldwide/Education/A-Family-Secret/

[24] www.4en5mei.nl/educatie/basisonderwijs/adopteer_een_monument

[25] www.entoen.nu/primair-onderwijs/didactisch-concept/leerplan-(slo)/geschiedenis

[26] Nationaal Vrijheidsonderzoek - kennisdeel meting 2007. www.4en5mei.nl/4en5mei/onderzoek/vrijheidsonderzoek/2007/_pid/kolom2_1/_rp_kolom2_1_elementId/1_106335 .

[27] Nationaal Vrijheidsonderzoek - kennisdeel meting 2007, page 14.

[28] SLO, vakdossier geschiedenis 2010, p. 11

[29] Anne Frank House, research Dagboekeducatie, Karin Laarakker, 2006.

[30] www.niod.knaw.nl/default.asp or www.chgs.nl/index_eng.html

[31] Hondius D.G., Oorlogslessen, page 294.

[32] Tweede Wereldoorlog in Perspectief. De Tweede Wereldoorlog en het Midden-Oosten lespakket. Resultaten landelijke pilot 2008-2009 diversion.nl

[33] The focus is on Morocco, Turkey, former Dutch Antilles and Suriname, former Yugoslavia, China, and the history of the 4th and 5th of May as days of commemoration in the Netherlands.

[34] Barry van Driel and Lutz van Dijk, Intercultural Education. Teaching the Holocaust in Diverse Classrooms: Opportunities and challenges. Vol. 21. Supplement nr. SI, 2010.

[35] www.historischnieuwsblad.nl/00/hn/nl/153/content/1145/College_Nederlandse_Geschiedenis.html

[36] World War II and its aftermath in the Netherlands. Ministry for Health, Welfare and Sport, June 2009. Page 25

[37] Centre for Holocaust and Genocide studies, CIJO, Dutch Union for Progressive Judaism, Dutch Auschwitz Committee, Humanity in Action, Camp Amersfoort National Monument, Camp Vught National Memorial, Camp Westerbork  Memorial Centre, the Shoah Foundation, Anne Frank House, University of Amsterdam (UvA), Free University, Amsterdam (VU), Utrecht University (UU), Erasmus University, Rotterdam (EUR), Radboud University Nijmegen (RU), Organisation for Sinti and Roma.

[38] www.4en5mei.nl/herdenken

[39] The Dutch East Indies were, at that time, still occupied.

[40] www.4en5mei.nl/4en5mei/jaarthema/vrijheid_wereldwijd

[41]National Freedom Study (Nationaal Vrijheidsonderzoek) 2010, page 2. The report can be found on the website of the National Committee for May 4th and 5th (www.4en5mei.nl/4en5mei/onderzoek/vrijheidsonderzoek).

[42] The Digital Monument to the Jewish Community in the Netherlands is an Internet monument dedicated to preserving the memory of all the men, women and children who were persecuted as Jews during the Nazi occupation of the Netherlands and did not survive the Shoah. www.joodsmonument.nl.

[43] Most of the museums listed here have exhibitions that only partially focus on the Holocaust. The number of visitors however includes all visitors.

[44] www.annefrank.org/en/Subsites/Home

[45] www.communityjoodsmonument.nl

[46] "Oranje Vereniging" is the term given to local organisations, which support national festivities related to Queen's Day and commemoration ceremonies.

[47] www.4en5mei.nl/educatie/educatieve_materialen

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