JONATHAN S. WOOCHER
Today, the Jewish educational system is in a period of dynamic transition. To understand where we may be heading, it is useful to look at the four commonplaces — the learner, the teacher, the subject matter, and the social context — to see how each is being transformed.
We can resolve the affordability crisis over time, but it will take many years, even decades, of hard work, leadership, and the involvement and support of vast networks of people who have been touched by day school education.
A Roundtable on Congregational Education:
We are at a time of great opportunity. What kind of learning matters to the majority of North American children and families who take part in part-time Jewish learning? How do we measure learner success? What exemplifies the impact possible in learners? What kind of leadership enables a shift from a system where education is about preparing for an event for some day in the future to a holistic system that’s about being in community and experiencing today the myriad of ways Judaism enables us to live fully? What are the essential characteristics of leaders who create successful Jewish part-time learning?
JUDD KRUGER LEVINGSTON
As we become aware of the dangers of information overload, the distraction of technological gadgets, the growth and terror of cyber-bullying, and the abundance of inappropriate material on the Internet, all of us who work with young people can play an important role in nurturing moral growth and character development by remixing ancient texts and practices with contemporary life.
Rachel B. Tiven On Saturday, December 18, 2010, Jews in synagogue read Parashat Vayechi, while in the U.S. Senate, the Development, Relief, and Education of Alien Minors Act — the DREAM Act — went down in defeat. Vayechi closes the story of Joseph, who was brought to Egypt as a teenager — not of his
1. Should preparation for bar/bat mitzvah shape the agenda of Jewish education?
2. How might Jewish education change when it focuses on the learners, rather than on the providers?
3. What role might technology play in Jewish education — and what must educators be wary of in bringing technology into the learning environment?
4. Should Jewish educators focus more on helping people discover how Judaism is meaningful than on teaching knowledge and skills? What would the shift imply?
5. How do you make Jewish learning a lifelong pursuit?