Holocaust survivor and actress Eva Tannenbaum-Cummins performed her one-person play, “A Page from the Past… Or is it?” in December for students in Peter Suruda’s English classes at Juanita High School. During the annual visit, organized through a partnership with the Holocaust Center for Humanity in Seattle, Tannenbaum-Cummins recollects her childhood growing up in Hitler’s Berlin:
"All of a sudden we hear ‘Hitler's coming! Hitler's coming!’ And of course everybody had to give the Hitler salute, except Jews for whom it was forbidden. And so my mother said, ‘turn around.’ And we quickly turned around toward a jewelry shop and watched the reflection of Hitler passing by. A very scary moment.”
When she was in fifth grade, Tannenbaum-Cummins and other Jewish students were expelled from school. After witnessing Kristallnacht (Night of Broken Glass), she and her mother spent nearly a year trying to leave Germany for Seattle where a cousin lived. They arrived in 1939 when she was a teenager. Two weeks later, Germany invaded Poland and ignited World War II.
Students sat in silence during the performance, but were eager to ask questions afterward. Several students were interested in whether Tannenbaum-Cummins had been back to Berlin. She said she’s been back twice, but emphasized Seattle is her home. “Berlin is just a place I used to live.”
Sammamish Review | August 3, 2016 | By Sarah Troy | Several Eastside Catholic School students received awards for their submissions in the Holocaust Center for Humanity’s 2016 Writing, Art and Film Contest.
More than 900 students from 70 schools participated in this year's contest. Students were asked to respond to the question “How does the Anne Frank Tree sapling (recently planted in Seattle) and what you have learned about the Holocaust, inspire you?”
Aava Sikchi, a middle schooler from Issaquah, and Sammamish 10th-grader Kyle Jenkins each earned first place honors for their written essays. Sophomore Emmie Head’s written submission earned an honorable mention.
Several Eastside Catholic sophomores were also recognized for their film entries in the contest. Mitch Flippo (Bellevue) and Sarah Troy (Sammamish) tied for second, and Sacha Mallalieu (Sammamish) and Mina Head (Sammamish) placed third.
Established in 1989, the Holocaust Center for Humanity is a nonprofit organization that strives to teach tolerance to schools and communities in the Pacific Northwest through lessons of the Holocaust.
Seattle-based Holocaust Center for Humanity has awarded Blaine Middle School student Diana Kovtun second place for an art piece she submitted for the organization’s annual Writing, Art and Film Contest.
The nonprofit celebrated its 25th year hosting the contest, which is open to students in grades 5 — 12. This year’s prompt related to a recent honor awarded to Seattle, after it was chosen as one of the 11 places in the United States to care for a sapling from a chestnut tree cherished by Anne Frank.
The prompt, “How does this tree, and what you have learned about the Holocaust, inspire you and others?” garnered a response from about 900 students from 60 schools in Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Alaska.
“The contest is important because it gives students a creative outlet to express some, at times, heavy and difficult concepts,” said Holocaust Center education associate Julia Thompson.
Most often, the prompts encourage kids to consider the experience of a local holocaust survivor, she said. Ultimately, the mission is to encourage kids to not only be open to learning, but also to take action in their own communities.
The contest is only one component of the Holocaust Center for Humanity’s education. The organization also offers several exhibitions and resources for teachers, including trainings, speaker opportunities and more.
Sixth grade student Kovtun attended the award ceremony in July with support from her teacher Paul Minckler. “The small sapling also illustrates that there is still hope for the survivors and their families and the hope has come,” Kovtun said in a statement.
Auburn Reporter | Aug. 1, 2016 | Wyatt Pritchard, an eighth-grader from Cascade Middle School, took honorable mention honors for writing at the recent Holocaust Center for Humanity's Writing, Art and Film Contest.
Nearly 900 students, from grades 5 through 12, from more than 60 different schools from throughout the area responded through paintings, essays, sketches, poems and films. The winners were honored July 24 at the Holocaust Center for Humanity in Seattle.
Pritchard's teacher is Alethea Dozier.
The following is an excerpt from Wyatt's poem: "In a time in your life where you are never certain/if you will live or if you're being watched through the curtain/there is only one thing that refuses to disappear/that this is faith, it make things become clear." (Read Wyatt's poem here.)
For more than 25 years, Holocaust Center for Humanity has been teaching tolerance and citizenship through lessons of the Holocaust and provides inspirational education opportunities and resources to teachers and the community. The center offers teacher training, a speakers bureau of local Holocaust survivors, "travelling trunks," and the writing, art and film contest.
The contest empowers the students to creatively speak out and explore different aspects of their daily lives while engaging with the lessons of the Holocaust.
A full list of the winners and their work is available here.