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Georgia Commission on the Holocaust donates learning trunk to Rome Middle School

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Holocaust Learning Trunk Project

The Georgia Commission on the Holocaust recently donated a unique trunk to Rome Middle School students as part of the Holocaust Learning Trunk Project. / Rome City Schools

The Georgia Commission on the Holocaust recently donated a unique trunk to Rome Middle School students.

The contents of the trunk, which is part of the Holocaust Learning Trunk Project, provide an interdisciplinary addition to the curriculum already in place at RMS, while also assisting educators in fulfilling the state’s standards of excellence.

“Our kids love learning about the Holocaust and are just fascinated by the stories of the survivors. My goal with this trunk is to encourage my student to become interested and make it relevant to their lives. I don’t want it to be something they have to learn in history, I want it to mean something to them,” eight grade Georgia studies teacher, Amy Deese said.

Some of the things students will have access to are books like “Anne Frank’s Diary”, lesson plans, DVDs and all kinds of educational materials to help the students at RMS to learn about the Holocaust.

Mike Weinroth, exhibition and speaker coordinator for the Georgia Commission on the Holocaust, and Rep. Katie Dempsey presented the trunk to Rome Middle School.

“A few months ago, I was asked to bring a Holocaust survivor to an Exchange Club meeting here in Rome,” Weinroth said. “While I was there, a gentleman approached me and asked if we would be interested in attending a Rotary Club meeting as well, and the trunks were brought up. I thought about the students at Rome Middle School and got a hold of Ms. Deese, and the rest is history.”

Each trunk is unique — Weinroth said that the commission has created around 150 trunks all housing different books and learning tools, so no one trunk is the exact same.

They are each decorated by students in the metro-Atlanta area, “which allows students to express the lessons of the Holocaust through art. Each trunk has a story. No two trunk designs are alike,” Weinroth said.

“I think it is awesome to have these kinds of resources available for our students. To have a teacher go out and get one of these treasures for our school and our students is phenomenal, and I am glad to have this kind of treasure for our kids for years to come,” Rome Middle School Principal Parke Wilkinson said.

The program is sponsored by the commission in cooperation with the Georgia Department of Education and is supported by The Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany, Inc. and the Georgia Foundation for Public Education.