Teaching the Seeds of Violence in Palestine-Israel — A New Lesson

“With its unceasing bombardment of our homes and neighborhoods,” writes Gaza-based journalist Afaf Al Najjar in The Nation, “Israel has transformed Gaza into a slaughterhouse. And with its continuous targeting of hospitals, bakeries, water wells, solar panels, and markets, Israel is depriving us of all the necessities of life.”

The unrelenting violence there is a crime against humanity.

We owe it to our students — and to the people of Gaza — to explore in our classrooms the history of this violence.

The Zinn Education Project has just posted “Teaching the Seeds of Violence in Palestine-Israel,” an activity written by Bill Bigelow, that takes students back to the late 19th- and early 20th-centuries and helps them see the roots of today’s crisis.

Portrait of Palestinian family of Ramallah, circa 1900-1910.

The lesson is a mixer/mystery activity on Zionism, anti-Zionism, peasant resistance, the Great War, the British Mandate, and more. As with all lessons at the Zinn Education Project website, it is free.


We encourage teachers’ feedback on this new lesson. Let us know how it worked, student insights, classroom stories, and suggested edits or additions.

More Teaching Resources on Palestine-Israel

Painting by Abdel Rahman Al Muzain, 1977.

We offer a collection of lessons, films, primary documents, infographics, articles, podcasts, and more for teaching about Palestine-Israel. For daily news, with classroom-friendly clips, we recommend Democracy Now!

Teaching for Change’s Social Justice Books has a collection of books for pre-K-12 on Palestine.

The spring issue of Rethinking Schools magazine will feature articles, lessons, and poetry for teaching about Palestine. Subscribe today.


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