New IWitness Activities Focus on the Experience of the Genocide Against the Tutsi in Rwanda

Mon, 03/31/2014 - 4:40pm

Students and teachers can commemorate April’s Genocide Awareness Month and the 20th anniversary of the Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda by completing two new IWitness activities.

IWitness provides access to nearly 1,300 full life histories, testimonies of survivors and other witnesses to the Holocaust and other genocides for guided exploration. Students can watch testimonies and use them in individual or group multimedia projects; teachers can assign activities as classwork or homework, and can even custom-build their own lessons and activities. The testimonies are searchable by more than 9,000 keywords, enabling students to pinpoint exact moments of interest within each testimony, which averages two hours in length

The Information Quest The Genocide Against the Tutsi in Rwanda introduces students in grades 8-10 to the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda, which claimed the lives of 800,000 people in three months, and to the concept of genocide as a whole. Through this activity, students will learn about the history of the Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda specifically, the history of genocide generally, and the stages of genocide. They will also be introduced to testimony of eyewitnesses who survived.

This activity was originally constructed for use in classroom pilots of IWitness in Kigali, Rwanda, with colleagues from the Kigali Genocide Memorial. It is now being made available to students all around the world.

The Information Quest Kizito Kalima allows students in grades 6-12 to view and reflect on a selected experience from the testimony of Kizito Kalima, a survivor of the genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda. Here, students will watch selections from the Kalima’s testimony and through his story learn about the experience of surviving genocide. finished

Teachers may also be interested in the related downloadable lesson "'If You Survive, Be a Man': Teaching the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwanda" on the USC Shoah Foundation website for