BIRMINGHAM: Teaching About the Violins of Hope / Birmingham City Schools


Monday, September 18, 2017
8:15 am-3:00 pm
Temple Emanu-El
2100 Highland Ave, Birmingham, AL 35205

The Alabama Holocaust Education Center (BHEC), in collaboration with Violins of Hope Birmingham is offering a targeted student experience for up to 10 Birmingham City Schools that will provide a unique approach to studying the Holocaust. Using the book Violins of Hope: Instruments of Hope and Liberation in Mankind’s Darkest Hour, and the opportunity to personally meet the Violins of Hope and the gentleman who brought these instruments back to life, students will explore the strength of the human spirit and the power of music during one of mankind’s darkest hours.


  • Continental breakfast and lunch will be served
  • CEU credits for teachers available
  • Up to $80/day reimbursement for substitutes
  • Featuring James A. Grymes, author of Violins of Hope
  • Educational sessions about the Holocaust taught by Ann Mollengarden, Education Coordinator of the BHEC, and Amy McDonald, teacher Shades Valley High School and US Holocaust Memorial Museum Teacher Fellow
  • Teachers will be provided copy of Violins of Hope and other teaching materials
  • Art teachers will be provided all materials to create a one-time art project reflecting their experience in studying about the Violins of Hope


Birmingham City High Schools with a social studies or language arts teacher who have either taught the Holocaust or are interested in developing the skills for such a unit.  The schools selected will need to have a resident art teacher, as there is an art component to this program.


  1. Both teachers from each school must attend the Teacher Workshop in September.
  2. Participating schools agree to create the Art Project planned as part of the experience. Direction will be provided at the Workshop and materials will be provided by the AHEC.
  3. Teachers agree to teach about the Holocaust and include information from the book Violins of Hope that will be provided to teachers. A classroom set of 35 books will be available for loan from the AHEC. Other resources will also be provided.


Students and teachers participating in this project will attend the full-day Student Culminating Event.

Student Culminating Event
Thursday, April 12, 2018
9:00 am – 2:00 pm
Temple Emanu-El
2100 Highland Ave, Birmingham, AL 35205
(for Teachers and Students)

  • Lunch will be served
  • CEU credits for teachers available
  • Up to $80/day reimbursement for substitutes
  • Full day of learning activities for students including the following sessions:
  1. Music of the Holocaust, James A. Grymes
  2. Who Were the Partisans, Assi Weinstein, daughter of Assiel Bielski of the Bielski Brothers Partisan Group
  3. What is Judaism? Clergy of Temple Emanu-El
  4. Student Program: Violins of Hope, Amnon Weinstein, founder of Violins of Hope & the Violins of Hope in performanceSchools will need to provide their own transportation to and from this event