Advice for Day 1 of School

Advice for Day 1 of School

I was always nervous the night before the first day of school. It didn’t matter if I was a student, a teacher, or a head of school. I slept very little the night before and was exhausted by the end of the first day…

Where Have All the Teachers Gone?

Where Have All the Teachers Gone?

The indicators point to an intensifying shortage of Jewish educators in North America and beyond, and it looks like it will only get worse. This is not new and there are likely multiple causes, but COVID has brought about a wave of early retirement and teacher burnout so that the need has become more acute faster than anyone anticipated and the effects are being felt almost everywhere.

Relating the Four Sons to Holocaust Memory

Relating the Four Sons to Holocaust Memory

The Passover Seder serves not only as ‘the quintessential exercise in Jewish group memory’ according to the Yerushalmi, but it can serve as a paradigm of what Jewish education should be. The Seder with its symbols, practices and intellectual stimulation resonates in us all.

Rethinking Prayer and Jewish Education from a Neurodiverse Perspective

Rethinking Prayer and Jewish Education from a Neurodiverse Perspective

My neurodiversity is likely a form of ADHD, partially due to brain surgery. Some of my distractions are due to wandering thoughts and others to sensory stimuli. I also have Irlen syndrome and irregular auditory processing. Irlen syndrome causes visual distortions due to inefficient perception and processing of light and is treated using colored spectral filters.

Engaging Souls: Bringing Elementary Tefillah to Life

Engaging Souls: Bringing Elementary Tefillah to Life

Ask a teacher to teach the same short story to children every day for eight or more years, and they will likely look at you like you are crazy! Yet, in a sense, that is the challenge of teaching tefillah (prayer). We have the same tefillot, more or less, that we use with our children day after day for their entire school career. Unless there is a conscious effort to create a rich tefillah experience, group prayer is at risk of becoming a mindless task, with children (and adults!) on autopilot.

The Lookstein Center