Search results for: Pedagogy
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The Characteristics and Practices of Long-term Adult Jewish Learners: New Perspectives on the Dynamics of an Adult Classroom
Within the larger domain of adult Jewish learners there is a smaller cohort that continues to study regularly over the course of many years. They have stayed motivated to learn until a point where the study itself becomes part of their lives and regular practice. As a result of their experience these long-term learners have a tremendous amount to say about what makes the learning important to them, how it took hold, and how it affects their lives. This dissertation is a qualitative study of these learners, drawing from their reflections to portray their day-to-day experiences in the classroom.
Updated: Nov. 09, 2016
What Really Matters in Synagogue Education? Comparing an Alternative Program Model and a Conventional School Model
This study is an in-depth examination of two synagogue education programs, one a conventional “Hebrew School” structure and the other an alternative program modeled after Jewish summer camp. Through the lens of the teaching of Bible to children in the Grade 3-5 age range, I provide thick descriptions of an alternative and a successful conventional congregational supplementary education program and compare them in order to gain insight into what distinguishes the two models, where they are similar and the impact these similarities and differences might have on the proliferation and/or staying power of one or the other type of models. The programs are presented as case studies organized according to four domains of curricular function: the educating institution, the educational leadership, the teacher (or unit head) and the observed classroom/camp session. How do the organizations or individuals associated with each of these domains understand the teaching of Bible in their respective program structures? In what ways does the programmatic structure influence the choice of content knowledge and pedagogy?
Updated: Nov. 02, 2016
Rethinking the Education of Cultural Minorities to and from Assimilation: A Perspective from Jewish Education
Education and assimilation seem intimately connected; education either supports assimilation or thwarts it. But these paradigms assume a model of cultural vitality that depends on what one scholar aptly terms “tenacious adherence,” over time, to an unchanging cultural or religious tradition. Taking the example of the Jewish community and Jewish education and drawing on Jewish history and contemporary sociology of the Jews as well as other scholarship, this article presents the argument that this model is untenable. Instead, the goals of Jewish education ought to be reconceptualized, and the aim should instead be for “responsible assimilation,” that is, the cultivation of the capacity to creatively and responsibly assimilate external norms and practices in the service of the growth and vitality of Jewish culture.
Updated: Oct. 05, 2016
In honor of the birthday of Professor Nechama Leibowitz (3 Elul, 5665), Lookjed is reprinting Judah Harris' essay that is based on his attendance at a Drisha sponsored program that took place several years ago. - Nechama Leibowitz: Her Life & Work, was the theme for this year’s Winter Week of Learning at Drisha, a center for advanced Jewish Studies (but all levels are welcome) which offers ample learning opportunities throughout the year, but attempts special programs during popular vacation seasons to bring teachers and students together in a common pursuit. December 23rd and 24th was the most recent “community learning event,” as Drisha calls it, with presentations by Nati Helfgot, Walter Hertzberg, Moshe Sokolow, and Chayuta Deutsch from Israel, who wrote one of the special biographies of Nechama Leibowitz that has been published in recent years.
Updated: Sep. 11, 2016
In collaboration with The AVI CHAI Foundation, the Schusterman Center for Israel Studies at Brandeis University and a steering committee of religiously and geographically diverse Jewish day school heads are convening a two-day conference, November 14-15, 2016, to explore the trends playing out in the academy and the campus quad: “From Anti-Zionism to Anti-Semitism: An Educators Conference.” The conference intends to inform – not to alarm – us about the climate of college life today and to consider how Jewish schooling addresses the changed atmosphere that we and our students confront. Many of us are disturbed when the good that we take for granted – Zionism, Israel, and Judaism – are denounced as evil. We are confused when liberal ideas about diversity and progressivism are turned against the Jews who believe in those ideas. If we are troubled and confused, our students facing the assault are even more so. We have to know and better understand what they will have to confront.
Updated: Aug. 31, 2016
Teaching about the Holocaust in Israel: A Pedagogical Approach Adopted by the Israeli Ministry of Education
Holocaust education in any setting requires a careful approach, taking into consideration the cultural sensitivities of the target audiences, local history and current trends. In Israel, where Holocaust education has been created and developed over decades to produce models used around the world, this approach can be examined using the prism of the nationally instituted curriculum. The following article presents the rationale and ramifications of Holocaust education in Israel, as well as principles and suggestions to be considered in Holocaust education world over.
Updated: Aug. 31, 2016
School Autonomy and 21st Century Skills in the Israeli Educational System: Discrepancies Between the Declarative and Operational Levels
The following article analyzes two parallel processes in the Israeli educational system: first, the idea of school autonomy, exploring its origins and its pedagogical implications and effectiveness, and second, the development of the progressive education evident mainly in the cognitive domain of 21st century skills, focusing on fostering “deep knowledge” and children’s thinking skills. The manuscript explores the various “waves” of progressive pedagogies that have taken place in the Israeli school system over the years, describing and analyzing the processes that characterize them.
Updated: Aug. 23, 2016
Hebrew, the Living Breath of Jewish Existence: The Teaching and Learning of Biblical and Modern Hebrew
Most Jewish day schools in the United Kingdom underperform in the teaching and learning of Hebrew. Indeed, prominent figures in the UK Jewish establishment have singled out the teaching of Ivrit (Modern Hebrew) in Jewish day schools as in need of improvement. Former Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks argues that whilst children are undoubtedly better educated Jewishly now than in the past, many challenges remain. I contend that the physical separation between the Jewish Studies and the Hebrew departments in Jewish day schools does a disservice to both by shutting the door to crucial teaching and learning opportunities of Hebrew. I recommend that Jewish day schools should be working towards breaking down these ‘barriers’. In the present research, I address this issue from the perspective of my own interest, namely Hebrew pedagogy. My research investigates the extent to which creating connections between Biblical Hebrew and Modern Hebrew can enhance the teaching and learning of Hebrew in Jewish day schools.
Updated: Jul. 27, 2016
Where Have All the Miracles Gone? How Teachers Broach Biblical Miracles in Israeli Jewish National Schools
The current study examines how Israeli teachers’ beliefs and ideologies are expressed in their teaching of Biblical miracles. The article explores how Israeli teachers broach the topic of Biblical miracles, and how their beliefs and ideologies help them navigate a path from the national curriculum to the classroom. The article focuses on three key areas: Initially, I discuss the educational challenges that teachers in Israeli schools confront in teaching miracles. This is followed by a mapping of educational approaches to presenting miracles. The final section analyzes conversations with three teachers about how they present miracles in their classrooms.
Updated: Jul. 27, 2016
For a long time, educational technology was focused, to a large extent, on the use of computers (and later the internet) within the classroom. Educators spoke about “breaking the classroom walls” by using YouTube clips to start a classroom discussion or by letting students look up information on the internet. Teachers began to realize that they were no longer the “owners” of information, once handheld internet devices were introduced (aka smartphones) smart kids would challenge the teachers' authority by fact checking the information discussed in class. Educators then spoke of the transition from “the sage on the stage to the guide on the side” that meant moving away from the lecturing model – but what instead? How can a teacher be a “guide on the side” with so little time to teach (or “guide”)?
Updated: Jul. 06, 2016