Reframe – Jewish Complementary Education

From Section:
Formal Education
Jan. 28, 2013

Source: Reframe 


ReFrame is an initiative of the William Davidson Graduate School of Jewish Education at the Jewish Theological Seminary which has been operating over the last year and a half. Reframe aims to strengthen complementary schools, such as those housed in congregations, through the approach of experiential Jewish education.


Reframe's Target Population

Reframe's ultimate beneficiaries are the Jewish children and families who yearn to feel that the excitement of Shabbat and the freedom to study Hebrew in the summer by the lake can also be experienced over the course of the entire school year. The Davidson School recognizes that these experiences can only occur in schools where educators are properly prepared and supported. As such, ReFrame will focus primarily on the educators who serve Conservative congregations throughout North America. Participating educators can also engage in the ReFrame project in multiple ways:

  • International Online Conversation—Join the conversation on congregational schools and experiential Jewish education through our social media platforms and online technology. Through these platforms, we will disseminate new thinking, develop new ideas, and share innovative models. Educators will be able to contribute to and gain from the conversations from any location at any time.
  • ReFrame Design Labs—Through ReFrame, we will convene groups of educators for short-term gatherings during which they can experiment with ReFrame questions and ideas in a “design laboratory setting.”
  • ReFrame Action-Research Sites—Schools interested in a deeper ReFrame experience will be invited to design and pilot new models of teacher education or student learning. The educators in these schools will benefit from: 
    - Training in the approach of experiential Jewish education and skills in assessment 
    - The opportunity to experiment with powerful models of experiential 
    - Jewish education that will strengthen the quality of learning for children and their families
    - Assessment of new models

ReFrame Articles 

A wide range of leaders in Jewish education were asked to contribute to the ReFrame initiative by addressing a series of questions related to the integration of experiential Jewish education into complementary school settings. Leaders draw on their experiences in schools, camps, central agencies, and academia.

Introduction by Zachary Lasker, Ed.D.

  • ReFraming Jewish Education

Experiential Jewish Education: Broad Implications

  • Dr. Jeffrey S. Kress: What is Experiential Jewish Education?
  • Rabbi Mitchell Cohen: Extending the Camp Experience Beyond the Lake
  • Dr. Gil Graff: Navigating Through the Range of Jewish Experiences
  • Jeffrey Lasday: How Do You Build an Ecosystem of Jewish Education?

Advancing Content Through an Experiential Approach

  • Dr. Barry W. Holtz: What Should Jews Know?
  • Lesley Litman: Experiential Education & Curriculum Design
  • Johanna Sohn: Giving Hebrew Language Acquisition Velocity and Attention
  • Rabbi Sarah Graff: How did camp help me become a praying Jew?
  • Cantor Marcey Wagner: What is the range of goals for t’fillah education?

Preparing Experiential Educators

  • Gila Hadani Ward: Preparing Complementary School Teachers in the 21st Century
  • Dr. Sarah Tauber: 21st Century Educational Leaders in the Complementary Setting
  • Amy Skopp Cooper: From Counselors to Jewish Education Professionals

Sustaining & Measuring Innovations in Experiential Jewish Education

  • Dr. Jack Wertheimer: Identifying Goals and Measuring Impact
  • Cyd B. Weissman: Is The ReFrame Project Successful?

Updated: Feb. 07, 2017
Complementary education | Conservative | Experiential education | Innovation | Online resources