Teacher resources and professional development across the curriculum

Teacher professional development and classroom resources across the curriculum

Monthly Update sign up
Mailing List signup
Teaching The Children of Willesden Lane
Resources to help you teach the book in middle schools and high schools

A Special Performance by the Author

Music, Love, and Survival
Part 1: Piano Lessons

In this part of her performance, Mona describes Lisa’s last lesson with her piano teacher, Professor Isseles. Lisa plays Beethoven’s "Moonlight" Sonata and a Scherzo by Chopin. Then the professor tells Lisa that he will no longer be able to teach her because she is Jewish.

Questions to Discuss With Students

  • Mona emphasizes a “few precious words” that her grandmother told her mother: “Hold on to your music. It will be your best friend in life.” What gifts do you think your parents or grandparents would most want you to hold on to?
  • When Lisa’s piano teacher says he can no longer teach her because of a new law against Jews, he adds, “and I am not a brave man.” What things might he have done if he were brave? Why do you think he didn’t do those things?

Print-Friendly Page

View of Mona's hands on the keyboard

Music Mona Plays in Part 1

Nocturne, Opus 9, No. 1
by Frédéric Chopin

Piano Concerto in A Minor, First Movement
by Edvard Grieg

“Moonlight” Sonata
by Ludwig van Beethoven

Scherzo No. 2
by Frédéric Chopin


© Annenberg Foundation 2017. All rights reserved. Legal Policy