Anne Frank Lesson for Kids: Facts & Biography

Instructor: Charles Kinney, Jr.
Anne Frank lived a short life, but her words will survive for a long time. In this lesson, you will read the story of a girl who went into hiding and how her words survived and were read by millions of people.

Words Are Stronger Than War

There is almost no story like Anne Frank's.

Anne grew up in a happy home in Frankfurt, Germany. Her parents, Edith and Otto, encouraged Anne and her sister, Margot, to read and study. Anne liked to write. The Franks were Jewish.

Anne Frank liked to write.
Anne Frank

A group of people called the Nazis, led by Adolph Hitler, took over the government in Germany. Hitler and the Nazis hated the Jews very much. They believed all the problems in Europe were caused by the Jews. This was, of course, not true, but the Nazis decided to get rid of all the Jews. The Nazis put the Jews in work camps and eventually decided to kill all of the Jews in a plan called the 'Final Solution'. It was a horrible time for not only Europe but the world. This was during an awful war called World War II.

A Place to Hide: The Secret Bookcase

The Franks left Germany and went to the Netherlands, a country to the north of Germany. They settled in Amsterdam, the capital of the Netherlands. Otto started a new company selling spices.

Then the Nazis invaded the Netherlands. There was nowhere to run, so Otto decided to hide the family until it was safe after the war. Even though it was very dangerous to help the Jews, Otto's employees agreed to help the Franks. Above Otto's business were rooms and a bathroom. A secret bookcase was built over the entrance. 1942, the family went into hiding. Eventually, another family who was also trying to escape the Nazis joined them, making the space very cramped.

The family hid in an apartment that was sealed behind a bookcase.
Bookcase in house in Netherlands

Anne started to keep a diary. She wrote about what was happening. During the day, the family would have to be very quiet so no one would hear them down below. If someone did, they might turn the family into the SS, the Nazi police. The family hid for about two years. Food started to became a problem.

A Sad Ending, but a New Beginning

It was not a happy ending. Someone told the SS, who found the secret bookcase in 1944. The Franks were taken to Auschwitz, a place in Poland where the Nazis killed over 1,100,000 Jews. Otto was separated from Edith, Margot and Anne. Anne died some time in 1945. The war ended not much longer after that.

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