Virtual programs provide critical Holocaust education

San Antonio’s Holocaust Memorial Museum expands reach through new programs 

By Kate McCloud, Assistant Director of the HMMMSA 

NEW PROGRAMS 

Starting in August, the Holocaust Memorial Museum of San Antonio launched a new Lunch and Learn virtual series. Featuring talks from the museum’s docents, topics included Women in the Holocaust and a Second-generation Survivor talking about the experiences of several family members during the Holocaust.  

You can view the recorded programs at these links from the Jewish Federation of San Antonio’s YouTube channel: 

Women in the Holocaust – Part 1 

Women in the Holocaust – Part 2 

My Mother’s Story with Steve Rosenblatt 

In September, another new virtual series was launched featuring several local San Antonio Rabbis from different congregations who explain aspects of Judaism for the non-Jewish audience of the museum. This series encourages the San Antonio community to strive to better understand each other, and, in the words of Maxine Cohen, founding director of the HMMSA, “see ourselves in the faces of strangers.”  You can view the series on the museum’s social media on Facebook and Instagram. 

INCREASING ACCESSIBILITY 

Along with the new virtual series, the museum staff has worked to ensure that the South Texas community can access the programming provided by the HMMSA.  By adding subtitles to all of the social videos, the museum hopes to better serve those who are deaf and hard of hearing.  Not only does adding subtitles better serve the community, but studies have shown that adding subtitles to videos can help comprehension of the content subject.   

With the continuing distanced learning affecting schools throughout Texas, the HMMSA has explored applications to help reach students in and out of the classroom. The museum has added the use of the Flipgrid application which will allows staff and docents to present topics to students such as “Now That I Know” or “Ask a Docent.”  Students can then record themselves answering questions in brief 1-minute clips. While the museum remains closed physically but open virtually, new applications such as Flipgrid help the museum continue its mission to teach the dangers of hatred, prejudice, and apathy, and promote good citizenship, democratic values, and respect for human dignity. 

The Holocaust Memorial Museum of San Antonio is a program of the Jewish Federation of San Antonio. To learn more or get involved, visit HMMSA.ORG.

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