HaYidion: RAVSAK's Journal of Jewish Education - Rising Ed Trends

Autumn, 2013

Source: HaYidion, Autumn, 2013


This issue of HaYidion focuses on Rising Ed Trends. A sense of opportunity, of optimism and enthusiasm pervades the work of the authors in this issue. They seek to break the bonds of the past and open the way for all of us to enter a future of virtually limitless potential. There are some caveats included, as well as some really sound advice. There are pieces that will inspire an instant desire for emulation and others that will make you sit back and say, “Whoa! That’s too far out for me.” But we hope that you will read them all, share them widely and benefit from them greatly.


Among the articles in this issue are:

Remove this Word from Your Vocabulary! 21st Century Learning Needs 21st Century Learning Spaces

  • Prakash Nair and Catherine Roberts-Martin

    An international authority in school design, himself a day school parent, explains the philosophy of contemporary educational spaces and illustrates steps schools can take to expand and inspire learning.

JEDLAB: Bringing Network-Learning to Your Classroom

  • Ken Gordon and Yechiel Hoffman

    Created just this year, JEDLAB has “gone viral” as the forum for dynamic and creative new thinking in Jewish education. Its creators here envision applying JEDLAB principles in the classroom.

Breaking the Age Barrier

  • Mindy Schiller

    The single-age classroom is so engrained in school practice that it is scarcely noticed, multiage groupings often being the fruit of necessity alone. Schiller argues for the intrinsic pedagogic value of the multiage classroom.

What Schools Can Learn from the “Maker Movement”

  • Sylvia Libow Martinez and Gary S. Stager

Two leading proponents of “making” and “tinkering” in education explain the nature of this movement and the principles behind it, while offering advice and inspiration for re-making your school into a maker school.

The Games We Play: Leveraging Gameful Learning

  • Tim Saunders

    RAVSAK’s middle school program JCAT developed from the pioneering work on educational games taking place at the University of Michigan. Saunders, a Michigan alum and gaming colleague, presents ways to gamify the classroom.

Getting Started with Project-Based Learning (PBL)

  • Tikvah Wiener and Andrea Rose Cheatham Kasper

    The authors are both researchers of project-based learning and champions of ambitious initiatives in PBL. They explain the varieties of PBL, offer examples from day schools and give guidance for professional development.

Embracing Experimentation

  • Dr. Jonathan Woocher

    RAVSAK is delighted to welcome Dr. Jonathan Woocher, a renowned visionary in Jewish education, to the pages of HaYidion, where he will have a platform to offer his guidance and inspiration to our readership.

PBL in our Schools

  • Project-based learning, at heart, is giving students the opportunity not just to discover themselves but to create themselves. When the projects come together successfully, they empower students to self-create by applying the values imparted by Jewish day schools: exercising responsibility, collaborative exploration, taking action based on knowledge, enthusiasm for learning and creating something new and valuable. Below are examples of PBL in RAVSAK schools that translate Jewish learning into practice, draw important lessons, and derive benefit for participants, other students and the larger society.

Full STEAM Ahead! Cultivating 21st Century Skills

  • Danny Aviv and Karen Everett

    STEM education is the hottest trend, especially in the US, where students lag behind counterparts abroad. Aviv and Everett argue for STEAM instead, combining technical learning with art and design to foster student creativity across the curriculum.

It’s Okay to Say No When You Have a Vision of Yes

  • Dr. Barbara Gereboff

    Gereboff argues that, before jumping into change driven by a particular technology or educational philosophy, a school should develop a principled process for collaborative review and evaluation.

Creativity, Curriculum and the Common Core

  • Angela Marzilli and Jamie Cluchey

    The authors demonstrate how the Common Core standards can be an ally to day schools, providing benchmarks against which they can be evaluated by prospective parents, and offering a framework for faculty collaboration and professional growth

Modeling Positive Speech and Other Jewish Values in Connected Learning

  • Devorah Heitner

    Day schools have the responsibility—and opportunity—to lead their community in demonstrating respectful norms for tech and social media use. Heitner offers helpful guidance in this area.

Synchronous or Asynchronous? Selecting the Best Online Learning Options for Your Students

  • Aryeh Eisenberg

    Online learning options are divided by one main criterion: time. Is the offering ready-made, accessible at all times, or is it live with real people teaching? This article maps this territory and explains the differences in cost and benefits.

Looking Beyond the 21st Century: Growing a Staff Development Garden of Innovation

  • Debbie Brown

    To undertake the kinds of changes described in this issue, one school created a new position, “director of innovations,” whose mandate is the cultivation of faculty development to reorient pedagogical practice.

When Timeless is Trendy: Professional Development for 21st Century Teaching

  • Lauren Applebaum and Miriam Heller Stern

    To enable teachers to succeed in incorporating new tools and methods into their practice, administrators need to put in place frameworks for teachers to engage in shared reflection and inquiry.

Flipping In-Service Professional Development

  • Vardit Ringvald and Janice Silverman Rebibo

    Flipped learning is usually evoked as a tool for the classroom. The authors, leaders in the training of Hebrew educators, developed a method of flipped instruction for PD that can serve as a model for schools and other programs.

Updated: Oct. 03, 2013