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Holocaust Survivors Guide Students through Their Stories in Virtual Reality Learning Experience

The Illinois Holocaust Museum in Skokie honors the memory of Holocaust victims and educates visitors by promoting human rights, while virtual reality exhibits can make visitors feel like they are walking alongside survivors through multiple concentration camps.

The museum wants visitors and students to take lessons from survivors and apply it to their lives today.

“We really want to create historical empathy. We really want them to connect with the survivor on a personal level to learn their story and to make it a very personal, meaningful experience and hopefully be inspired to take action, to be informed, active citizens.” said Director of Education Leah Rauch.

And now there is a way for Illinois students to experience the Illinois Holocaust Museum without having to travel there.

The museum is making virtual reality teaching trunks available to schools across the state. The VR headsets contained in the trunks include interactive videos featuring survivors Fritzie Fritzshall and George Brent, who share their stories while walking through multiple concentration camps and their hometowns.

The headsets arrive with easy set-up in mind.

“You’re able to just plug it in and have it go and with an iPad being able to do one or two clicks and have the kids have all those experiences,” said instructional technology and social studies coordinator Micah Miner of District 89 in Maywood.

The trunks include different activities and ideas for how to integrate the stories into lessons.

To reserve a trunk for your school, visit the museum’s website.


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