The Heart from Auschwitz activity enables the study of the historical context in which the Heart was created while focusing on spiritual resistance during the Holocaust. On the day of her 20th birthday, while she was a prisoner in the Auschwitz concentration camp, Fania received a heart-shaped card. Another young woman, Zlatka, had risked her life to make her a birthday present.
This in-class project concludes the study of the Holocaust on a positive note as students are invited to make their own version of the heart and to give it to someone in need of an affectionate gesture.
Download The Heart from Auschwitz Pedagogical Activity
The Heart from Auschwitz pedagogical activity is available online free of charge. Click on the download links at the bottom of this page for the activity that corresponds to your province’s curriculum.
- Engage in dialogue with one another, with the past, with diversity
- Practice dialogue through writing and acts of empathy
- Reflect on art as a form of human expression and on its transformative power
A print version of this activity is available free of charge* for Quebec teachers by filling out the pre-reservation form. You will receive:
- Teaching guide (22 pages)
- A replica of the Heart
- A video of the Heart
- Instructions for making a heart in class
- The story of the creation of the Heart from Auschwitz as told by Zlatka Pitluk, the woman who initiated the project
- A Brief History of the Holocaust Reference Guide
Teachers may also borrow or purchase The Heart of Auschwitz documentary by director Carl Leblanc (ADHOC Films). It traces the history of the heart from the women who created it to the girl who received it for her 20th birthday while working in a munitions factory at Auschwitz.
* Attention! Fees: The activity itself is free; however, shipping/courier costs for the activity are at your own expense. In-person pickup at the Museum is free.
The heart-shaped booklet is a birthday card offered to Fania Fainer for her 20th birthday on December 12, 1944, while she was in Auschwitz.
Learn more about the Holocaust and the Montreal Holocaust Museum’s collection
Many more artefacts preserved at the Museum are available on the Objects of Interest page of this website, notably the real Heart from Auschwitz. To learn more about the Holocaust, please consult the reference guide A Brief History of the Holocaust. You can also use the the Artefact Analysis Sheet to help your students further their learning.
Download the Educational Program
3rd cycle Elementary – Social Sciences, Languages, Ethics and Religious Culture
Grade 6 - Visual Arts; Grade 8, Grade 10, Grade 11 and Grade 12 – English Language Arts
Grades 5 and 6 - English Language Arts, Visual Arts; Grades 6 and 7 - Social Studies