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International Holocaust Remembrance Day, January 27, 2011

Maria Madalena, Portugal


Maria Madalena Fonseca Fernandes, a high school philosophy teacher in the Escola Secundaria Professor Augusto Lucas in Linda-a-Velha, Portugal, attended a seminar at the International School for Holocaust Studies at Yad Vashem (ISHS) in 2010.

Poster

When she returned to her school, Fernandes decided to create an all-school project for International Holocaust Remembrance Day on January 27, 2011 incorporating some of Yad Vashem’s pedagogical strategies. Her program focused on three different components: In her classroom, Fernandes’ students read and analyzed Primo Levi’s book, Is This a Man? Her students also created a Holocaust-related poster exhibition for display on the walls of the school.
Fernandes worked with the school library to organize interactive resources on the computers, including music for students to listen to and different websites for them to visit, and put together a collection of various books on the Holocaust for students’ perusal. Representatives from the Portuguese Ministry of Education and a representative from Yad Vashem visited the school on January 25, 2011, and expressed how impressed they were with Fernandes’ dedication as well as her coordination of the school-wide project.

Poster

In addition, Fernandes is an active member of the non-governmental organization, Memoshoa: The Association for Remembrance and Education of the Holocaust, and she continues to develop new strategies for Holocaust education in her school.