The Search

Lesson material about the Holocaust and the Second World War
  • antisemitism
  • holocaust
  • second world war
  • Dutch
  • English
  • German
  • voortgezet onderwijs

In the comic The Search, the students read about Esther, a Jewish girl, and learn about the major events that took place during the persecution of the Jews. In the process, they learn more about the roles of the victim, the perpetrator, the helper, and the bystander.

For who
secondary education basic, pedagogical academy primary education, secondary education advanced, secondary vocational education
120 minutes
Consists of
timeline, comic book, manual, workbook

Comic based on eyewitness accounts

The story is built around historical pictures, eyewitness accounts, and biographies. The characters in the story are fictitious, but their experiences are loosely based on the accounts of eyewitnesses. The comic presents history on a human scale, which will help students empathise with the main characters.

The Search is the sequel to our previous educational comic, A Family Secret.

The story of Esther

Esther, who is Jewish, has survived the Second World War, but her parents have been murdered at Auschwitz. That is all Esther knows. But then, her grandson Daniel locates Bob, who used to live next-door to the family. Bob was in Auschwitz with Esther’s parents and stayed with her father to the end. Esther is profoundly shocked by his story. She tells her friend Helena how she never stopped missing her parents. And how she has all but forgotten their faces. But then, Helena remembers something.

‘What did Abel Herzberg mean when he said: ‘There were not six million Jews murdered; there was one murder, six million times’? To my surprise, a student answered: ‘That the Nazis had six million chances to stop what they were doing.’’

Discussions with your students

Try involving the surroundings of the school in the discussion about the persecution of the Jews. What monuments can be found nearby? When are remembrance events held there? Are there any buildings or places nearby that refer to the Second World War or the persecution of the Jews? Are there any local stories you could tell about this period? Or do students commemorate another war or conflict? What matters to them?Take the different backgrounds of your students into account when moderating the discussion.