Scrapbookpages Blog

May 21, 2016

Middle school students create a gas chamber for an art project

Filed under: Holocaust — Tags: , , — furtherglory @ 12:09 pm

The following quote is from this news article:

http://qctimes.com/news/local/making-a-difference-in-art-class-students-gain-new-perspective/article_7a4ae39f-df01-5de2-84f5-1dfda09fdab8.html

Begin quote:

Over the past few months, students have been studying the World War II and the Holocaust period in history, science and English classes. So, [Alexandria] DeLong pitched the idea of creating a life-like gas chamber in art class.

“It’s a pretty out there statement — let’s make a gas chamber,” DeLong said.

The 24-year-old art teacher, who’s finishing out her first year at the middle school, had the students hooked — they brainstormed fog machines, imitation gas lights and barbed wire. They talked about how to act out a gas-chamber scene and how each taped figure should look.

For students, the fun of playing with packing tape was met [with] a serious tone.

“It makes us think about the awfulness of the Holocaust and be like, yes that actually happened,” Hughes said. “Would you rather read about it in a book or see it with your eyes?”

Figures made by students are supposed to look like people inside a gas chamber

Figures made of tape, by students, are supposed to look like people inside a gas chamber. This photo, by Kevin E. Schmidt, is available for purchase.

The following quote is from the news article:

Begin quote
With coffee cup in hand Monday morning, Alexandria DeLong doled out some haunting instructions for her seventh-graders at Bettendorf Middle School.

“This one needs to look more half-dead, don’t you think?” DeLong said to a student as they positioned a figure formed of tape. “Some should look more dead than others.”

It was almost time for the big reveal of their latest art project: recreating a Holocaust-style gas chamber with dozens of people-like figures constructed out of masking tape.

“There’s definitely the creepy factor,” Madi Hughes said, while hanging a figure from the ceiling in the school’s wrestling room. “But it’s also awesome how much we have learned.”

To create the sculptures, classmates wrapped each other with masking tape, from toes to shoulders, and carefully slipped the tape off. They went through about 100 rolls of tape.

“It’s the best project we’ve ever done,” Hughes, who is 13, said. “We can do some boring things in school, but this project was like boom… like fireworks.”

Over the past few months, students have been studying the World War II and the Holocaust period in history, science and English classes. So, DeLong pitched the idea of creating a life-like gas chamber in art class.

“It’s a pretty out there statement — let’s make a gas chamber,” DeLong said.

End quote

I ask you, dear readers: Can you think of a better way to trivialize the Holocaust? I hope that this teacher is Jewish — otherwise she could be headed to prison for perpetrating this stunt.

My photo of the gas chamber in the Auschwitz main camp

My photo of the gas chamber in the Auschwitz main camp