By: Anne Frank | Grades: 6-12 | Age: 10+ | Lexile Level: 1020
Teaching Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl
One of the difficult things about teaching Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl is dealing with the sheer tragedy of it all. Good-natured and full of life, Anne hopes and dreams; yet, we know the tragic, heart-breaking ending before we read the first page of the diary.
One way to deal with the tragedy of it is for students to also keep a diary in which they respond to the things that go on in Anne's life as they unfold throughout the book. Posing questions for students to respond to in their diaries will guide and focus their thinking on important elements. It will also give them daily writing practice.
Another difficult thing about teaching Anne Frank's diary is making sure students understand the historical context--the facts about World War II, the Nazis, the concentration camps, and the effects WWII had on everyday people. Spending extra time on context prior to, during, and after reading the diary will help students better understand Anne's world.
The teaching resources below will help you prepare to teach the diary of Anne Frank so your students can fully appreciate Anne's life.
Summary of Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl
In 1942, with Nazis occupying Holland, a thirteen-year-old Jewish girl and her family fled their home in Amsterdam and went into hiding. For the next two years, until their whereabouts were betrayed to the Gestapo, they and another family lived cloistered in the "Secret Annex" of an old office building. Cut off from the outside world, they faced hunger, boredom, the constant cruelties of living in confined quarters, and the ever-present threat of discovery and death.
In her diary Anne Frank recorded vivid impressions of her experiences during this period.
By turns thoughtful, moving, and amusing, her account offers a fascinating commentary on human courage and frailty and a compelling self-portrait of a sensitive and spirited young woman whose promise was tragically cut short.