Originally from Frankfurt (Germany), where she was born in 1929, Anne moved to Holland when she was a small girl. Her father - Otto Frank - believed that restrictions on Jewish people in Germany would not bode well for his family. The last picture of Anne in Frankfurt - with her mother (Edith) and older sister (Margot) - was taken on March 10, 1933. Anne was then four years old.
In Amsterdam, Anne lived at Merwedeplein 37 (on the second floor). The apartment building is still standing and is shown in this photograph. (Number 37 is on the left; number 39 is on the right.)
Restrictions on Jewish people, put in place by the Nazis, made life very difficult for Anne and all other Jewish people living in Holland.
During June of 1942, Anne began to keep a diary. Since she did not have a best friend, Anne planned to confide all her deep thoughts and innermost secrets to her new friend - the diary - whom she addressed as "Kitty."
On the 20th of June, 1942, Anne believed everything in her life was as good as could be expected given the circumstances of the occupation. Two weeks later, however, her whole world would be turned upside down.
Anne's diary entry - for the 20th of June, 1942 - is read by Carole Bos (creator of Awesome Stories). As you hear the story, the following points may help to guide your thinking.
ISSUES AND QUESTIONS TO PONDER: Anne Frank knows that life for Jewish people is difficult in The Netherlands - under the German occupation - but do you think this thirteen-year-old girl could have anticipated all the restrictions which she describes in her diary? How do you think she responded to them? Are those issues part of what she wanted to get off her chest (as she describes it) in writing her diary?
If those types of restrictions were suddenly made a part of your life, how would you respond?
What do you think happens, to a person, when he/she is expected to give-in to the dictates of a government forcing such restrictions upon one's life?
Anne doesn't have a best friend, so she tries to make-up for that by starting a diary she names "Kitty." How would a diary ever take the place of a best friend?
Have you ever had a time in your life when writing down your reactions, to bad events, helped to make you feel better about your situation? Describe how writing about it, in your journal, helped you to deal with the problems.
In addition, hear:
Excerpt from Anne's Diary for July 5, 1942
Excerpt from Anne's Diary for July 8, 1942
Saturday, June 20, 1942
Writing in a diary is a really strange experience for someone like me. Not only because I've never written anything before, but also because it seems to me that later on neither I nor anyone else will be interested in the musings of a thirteen-year-old schoolgirl. Oh well, it doesn't matter. I feel like writing, and I have an even greater need to get all kinds of things off my chest.
"Paper has more patience than people." I thought of this saying on one of those days when I was feeling a little depressed and was sitting at home with my chin in my hands, bored and listless, wondering whether to stay in or go out. I finally stayed where I was, brooding.
Yes, paper does have more patience, and since I'm not planning to let anyone else read this stiff-backed notebook grandly referred to as a "diary" unless I should ever find a real friend, it probably won't make a bit of difference.
Now I'm back to the point that prompted me to keep a diary in the first place: I don't have a friend.
Let me put it more clearly, since no one will believe that a thirteen-year-old girl is completely alone in the world. And I'm not. I have loving parents and a sixteen-year-old sister, and there are about…