Places of German history

During a four-day seminar, pupils from the Helmut-Schmidt-Schule in Usingen dealt with relevant events in German history.

At the EJBW in Weimar and the Buchenwald Memorial, the young people critically examined the traces of National Socialism. Their insights and experiences were then shared in workshops, which were led by experienced team leaders. References to the present day were made time and again.

People standing with their backs turned in front of the entrance to Buchenwald

NS - what does that have to do with me?

Thematically, the workshop focused on the period of National Socialism and its impact on today. The threat posed by right-wing ideologies in view of the increasing extent of right-wing violence and, in particular, the racist murders in Halle in 2019 and Hanau in 2020 clearly demonstrate that dealing with this period is still relevant.

In the workshop, the participants dealt with ideologies of equivalence in National Socialism and the continuity of anti-Semitic and racist enemy stereotypes. The workshop created space for critical reflection with reference to the students' personal and biographical backgrounds, as well as a place for exchange. This raised awareness of the resulting civic responsibility of each individual. During the workshops, the central question "NS, what does that have to do with me?" was also addressed. The visit to the memorial site was particularly formative for the participants - the pupils were able to discuss their impressions and needs with the other participants and workshop leaders during the subsequent workshop time. Away from the institution of school, the seminar trip gave the students a true-to-life insight into a central period of German history.

This report was written by Lena Marie Wörner.