Design Thinking Takes Center Stage as 100 Educators Reimagine Judaic Education in Jewish Day Schools

May 17-18, 2017

Source: eJewish Philanthropy 


Jewish Education Innovation Challenge (JEIC) convened nearly 100 Jewish educators and community leaders from across North America on May 17-18, 2017 to participate in its 5th annual Innovators Retreat – Oases of Change – at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum in Boston. The JEIC Innovators Retreat showcased 11 revolutionary ideas in Jewish day school education and opened them up for feedback from top educators, funders and social entrepreneurs in the field. These new models, grantees of the JEICs Day School Educators’ Challenge and the ten designers currently participating in HaKaveret: JEIC Team Challenge

JEIC’s HaKaveret Design Team shared five new models in Jewish education:

Making Meaning - This concept focuses on professional development that helps teachers validate and foster a broad range of Jewishly engaged behavior, encouraging students to link their passions with their Jewish identity and to see and develop themselves as Jewishly engaged individuals leading Jewishly meaningful lives.

Encounters with G-d - Through this model, teachers become more comfortable within their own spirituality and become more adept at expressing it.

Identity Builders - This model empowers educators to help students define who they are, shifting the focus of the classroom from accepted predetermined truths to a growth mindset which uses sources to develop identity that is informed by our sacred texts and traditions.

Torah Lishma - The “Torah Lishma” model focuses on developing a personal connection with Judaic studies by leveraging intrinsic motivation.

JDS for All - This model allows Jewish Day Schools to focus on what they do best. This will create a more sustainable model for Jewish education, run by the day school itself, yet focused on children who attend public school. The model is significantly more affordable than the traditional day school and has the potential to expand the reach of day schools.

See the presentations about these models here.

Updated: Jun. 01, 2017