Art, Culture and Religion

The famous Varsovians of Jewish descent

Today we will meet some famous Varsovians of Jewish descent, who lived and worked in Warsaw. Each of them has left a mark on the cultural heritage of Poland. Get to know them!

Jan Brzechwa is now remembered as an author of children’s books. They brought him immense popularity and won many admirers. “Kaczka Dziwaczka”, “Na straganie”, and “Akademia Pana Kleksa” are only a few examples of his works which are still well known to all Polish children.

Marek Edelman was a social activist, cardiologist and one of the leaders of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising. Thanks to him, the daffodil became a symbol of respect and remembrance for the Uprising.

Maria Ajzensztadt was a singer and is often called the nightingale of the Warsaw Ghetto. The March of Remembrance of 21 July 2013 was organised in her memory. This event commemorated the beginning of the liquidation of the the Warsaw Ghetto.

Ester Kamińska was a theatre actress who, alongside her husband, ran the first Jewish theatre to have a permanent location. She is often called the “mother of Jewish theatre”.

MATERIALS

  • portraits of famous Varsovians of Jewish descent (attachment 18.1)
  • portraits of famous Varsovians of Jewish descent – colouring pages (attachment 18.2)
  • symbols of professions (attachment 18.3)
  • crayons/paints/markers
  • scissors
  • glue

Step 1

Download attachment 18.1 and show the children pictures of famous Jews who lived in Warsaw. Explain briefly who these people were and what they did. Ask the children whether they know any of these famous people.

Step 2

Hand out one set of colouring pages (attachments 18.2 and 18.3). Look at the pictures together. Can the children recognise the people they depict? Ask them to colour the pictures using any technique they like. Then, they will have to think which symbol from attachment 18.3 fits the profession of the person they have coloured. Ask the children to cut out this symbol and glue it to the colouring page.

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