One of the most common questions we hear from teachers is: How are other teachers using Sefaria in their classrooms? Sefaria’s Education Team has created a new group on Sefaria to help answer this very question. “Pedagogy on Sefaria: Exemplary Lesson Plans” is a public group in which we curate sample lessons that showcase innovative ways to leverage Sefaria's technology in the classroom. These lesson plans, created by experienced teachers, are a starting point for thinking about how to integrate Sefaria into your teaching.
Many educators are familiar with the SAMR model, which provides a framework for thinking about the integration of digital technology into education. While there are often great reasons to simply substitute a digital text in place of a printed book, we know that innovative educators are curious about more impactful ways to use Sefaria’s technology. Each lesson plan presents an approach to teaching that augments, modifies, or redefines learning activities.
Our hope is that more and more teachers will share lesson plans and teaching materials on Sefaria. While being open about our teaching can feel risky at times, everyone benefits from being informed by others in the field. We can improve pedagogy around Jewish texts by being transparent about our educational decisions, and learning from and advising one another.
This initial group of lesson plans comes from a diverse and skilled group of teachers. Rachel Buckman, Sefaria’s Education Associate, is an experienced day school Tanakh teacher. Sara Wolkenfeld is the Director of Education at Sefaria, and has taught Talmud and Jewish law in high school as well as to adults. We feel very lucky to have a number of lesson plans in this collection created by Rabbi Tzvi Sinensky, Director of Interdisciplinary Learning and Educational Engagement at Rae Kushner Yeshiva High School in Livingston, NJ, and an experienced high school educator and Sefaria power user. In addition, Sefaria’s newest team member, Hedva Yechieli, added her voice to this group, reflecting her role as Educational Coordinator in Israel.
Do you have a lesson plan to share on Sefaria? Do you want to inspire other teachers with your creative teaching? Send us a note! This will be a collective effort and we look forward to including your ideas.
Sefaria is a non-profit organization dedicated to building the future of Jewish learning in an open and participatory way. We are assembling a free, living library of Jewish texts and their interconnections, in Hebrew and in translation. With these digital texts, we can create new, interactive interfaces for Web, tablet and mobile, allowing more people to engage with the textual treasures of our tradition.
See a collection of Tu B'Shvat Lessons and texts here!