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Sponsored by the Jack, Joseph, and Morton Mandel Center for Studies in Jewish Education at Brandeis University, Leaning About Learning draws on live conversations, originally conducted as a Zoom webinars. Regular episodes feature discussions between Dr. Jon Levisohn, Director of the Mandel Center, and a single scholar about a specific piece of their research. Bonus episodes include multiple voices, often discussing a newly released book, recently held conference, or other Mandel Center event ...
 
We are all Jewish educators, whether professionally, or personally in our own homes. Whether you chose to be an educator by profession or not, we are all Jewish educators. Day in and day out, in our own homes, we are educating our children on what it means to be a Jew, what it means to be a good person. The goal of the podcast is to provide listeners with practical advice and guidance from masters in the chinuch world, who have tremendous amount of experience in educating children and teens ...
 
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From the classroom to camp, at the top and the bottom of an institution, anybody can be a great leader. As we look at what makes an adaptive leader, we see that what matters is learners feeling "implicated and activated" to create an expanded identity within a collective framework, the ultimate purpose of Jewish education. In this week's inspiratio…
 
Jewish day schools expend significant time and energy in teaching Torah. But what are they trying to accomplish in this work? In this session, Ziva Hassenfeld discusses her soon-to-be published research on students’ learning to read Torah, in order to argue that Jewish day schools can induct students into a way of reading texts that will serve them…
 
Think of a time from your childhood when song helped you learn, whether it was memorizing all 50 states in the U.S., Jewish prayers, or the ABC's. How effective was learning that topic through song? How did it feel to recall this? Music not only helps us learn, but also builds connection, boosts happiness, and holistically embodies learners, well i…
 
When the world went into lockdown in 2020, there was a lot of uncertainty, but there was also a great deal of innovation and adaptability, especially in education. This week's episode of Adapting is a re-release on this very topic, with a fresh and reflective introduction by David Bryfman. On May 13, 2020, just six weeks into the pandemic, David Br…
 
Connecting with Jewish teens has always been a challenge, but today it brings more questions than ever, as teens have exponentially more demands on their time and attention than in decades prior. The work of engaging Jewish teens is deeply personal, with youth-serving professionals being called upon to tap into the emotional as much as the practica…
 
In this second episode of season two, we focus on Lower School/Middle School children. In this episode, you will learn: How to deal with technology impacting our children How to children in this stage develop their middos How parents can help children of this age develop a relationship with Hashem Best practices of discipline and much more! Rabbi C…
 
It is both an exciting and perhaps terrifying era for Jewish educators when digital technology is empowering learners in their own learning. Rather than being seen as a fountain of knowledge that learners turn to for information, 21st century educators must adopt a different set of skills – including flipping their classrooms, utilizing principles …
 
In this new season of JEDucation, each episode will focus on a different age/stage. As such, in this first episode of season two, we focus on toddler/daycare aged children. In this episode, you will learn: How to facilitate individual expression in your toddlers How to build their confidence How to get toddlers excited about Judaism and much more! …
 
Holocaust education is a staple of Jewish day school education. What messages do day school students take from this education? In this session, Meredith Katz will discuss her recently published study, which explored how a group of day school kids navigated questions of particularism and universalism, and how Holocaust education helped them to see t…
 
In this session, Judah Cohen discussed his recent article on the crucial role that Debbie Friedman played in making song leading a core part of the Coalition for Alternatives in Jewish Education (CAJE). He also addressed the changes in Jewish education that resulted from this alliance, and why it still matters. At the Mandel Center, we are committe…
 
Death and dying are topics that are often avoided, both in the world at large and in the realm of Jewish education. Rabbi Melanie Levav—award-winning educator, chaplain, and certified social worker—not only makes these topics easier to discuss, but suggests that Jewish educators cannot and should not avoid the topic. In this week’s episode of Adapt…
 
Rabbi Professor Jane Kanarek (Hebrew College), Rabbi Avi Killip (Hadar), Professor Barry Wimpfheimer (Northwestern), Sara Wolkenfeld (Sefaria), moderated by Professor Jon Levisohn (Brandeis University). For decades following its invention in 1923, Daf Yomi was practiced by experienced, mostly haredi Talmud scholars, and criticized by many as well. …
 
Sarra Alpert (Avodah), Rabba Yaffa Epstein (Wexner Foundation), Dr. Jane Shapiro (Orot: Center for Jewish Learning), Dr. Diane Tickton Schuster (Mandel Center for Studies in Jewish Education), moderated by Professor Jon Levisohn (Brandeis University). Adult Jewish learning is flourishing in synagogues, JCCs, board tables, leadership cohorts, servic…
 
Antisemitism is often referred to as the world’s oldest hatred, and perhaps it is not surprising that it's rearing its ugly head again in popular and sporting culture today. Now, with Ye, Kyrie, and Dave Chappelle at the forefront of educators' minds, it is as important as ever to analyze and discuss these issues with their learners – and the broad…
 
Israel has long occupied a prominent place in the lives and imaginations of American Jews, serving as both a symbolic touchstone and a source of intercommunal conflict. Sivan Zakai's book, My Second-Favorite Country: How American Jewish Children Think About Israel, is based on the major findings from her research project with MCSJE on Children's Le…
 
What can we learn from carefully crafted portraits of nine well-regarded Jewish day schools schools that vary in size, location, sponsorship, ideological orientation? How do these schools go about their work and how do school leaders respond to the pressing challenges that day schools face in the 21st century? Authors Alex Pomson and Jack Wertheime…
 
Jewish Day Schools are having a celebrated moment, but will they be viable in 20 years? Are the trends and challenges that may impact day schools in the future...leadership turnover, a quality educator pipeline, and affordability, being sufficiently acknowledged and addressed? In this week's episode of Adapting, David Bryfman explores these topics …
 
Abi Dauber Sterne and Robbie Gringras want society to argue more. Really! The two veteran educators believe that arguments can be a constructive force in Israel education. Robbie and Abi, authors of the book Stories For The Sake of Argument, explain why argument does not always have to end in divisiveness, and how a healthy argument can bring peopl…
 
What happens when young adults visit a Jewish museum? What do they learn about Jews and Judaism, and how are they changed by what they see, touch, hear and feel? In this talk, Laura Yares discussed findings from a pre-pandemic study of 30 young adult visitors to the National Museum of American Jewish History in Philadelphia, and described the rich …
 
How does a Jewish theater company draw upon Jewish history to wrestle artistically with universal human questions? How do they weave new narratives through the work of interpretation? Miriam Heller Stern, in recent work published as a chapter of the edited volume Portraits of Adult Jewish Learning: Making Meaning at Many Tables, has addressed these…
 
What can we learn about society, people's relationship with Israel, Jewish people, and themselves, through Hebrew accents? Possibly quite a bit! This conversation focuses on Sharon Avni's recent work on how the everyday acts of speaking, learning, and engaging with Modern Hebrew inform our understanding of contemporary American Jewish life. Origina…
 
The term "Jewish education" is used to refer to a broad array of practices, approaches, and institutions. Ari Kelman has written a new book, Jewish Education, forthcoming from Rutgers University Press in its Key Words in Jewish Studies series. The series includes books designed to "provide clear and judiciously illustrated accounts of terms current…
 
Most analyses of Jewish education, like most analyses of general education in Western, liberal society, emphasize the individual student. But some communities approach education very differently. Mijal Bitton discussed her research into how the Syrian Jewish community educates its members, formally and informally, to maintain bonds of commitment. O…
 
The Jewish overnight camping industry was on the verge of major changes in the late 1980s, when Shelly Dorph became the head of the Ramah National Commission. Jonathan Krasner discussed the case of Ramah and how it reflects on the challenges and opportunities that Jewish non-profit summer camps faced in the 1990s and early 2000s, and what it means …
 
In this episode of Adapting David Bryfman speaks with Noam Weissman of OpenDor Media, an experienced Israel educator and podcaster in his own right. They discuss how Jewish educators can use the upcoming Israeli elections as a teaching tool to further engage students with Israel and the complexities of Israeli society. Noam shares his affection for…
 
The ecosystem of Jewish education depends on the contributions of various stakeholders and philanthropy is playing an increasing role in this landscape. This episode of Adapting explores some of the passion, concerns, and challenges that funders think about when making their contributions to Jewish causes. In conversation with Shawna Goodman Sone, …
 
In this episode we give you the Spark notes on the whole season, discussing one favorite takeaway from each episode, to help concretize and sum up all of the amazing advice we learned over this past year. Looking forward to season two which will be divided by ages, looking at the different developmental stages of children and how that effects our p…
 
For what was once regarded as fluffy education, experiential Jewish education has grown exponentially in recent decades. It’s dramatic rise has also surfaced many challenges for Jewish educators, academics, and those who support them. Does experiential Jewish education need a set of formal standards for educators and learners? And if so, who should…
 
According to Rabbi Ben Spratt, if you look around the American Jewish landscape, some organizations and institutions seem stuck, petrified of making big and needed changes. On the horizon, he views an American Jewish future that is able to break this stagnation as he places Jewish educators and Jewish education at the center of this seismic and nec…
 
Imagine a job where you are expected to know every detail about a 5,000-year-old tradition and its sacred texts. Sounds difficult, right? Welcome to the world of Jewish educators. These unique challenges are one of the reasons that some Jewish educators struggle with impostor syndrome. It's something that concerns Rabba Yaffa Epstein, who has worke…
 
Is the current state of Jewish education half full or half empty? You could say that the answer is somewhere in between, that both are true, at least to some extent. Or you could say that it really does depend on who you ask. This episode was produced by Dina Nusnbaum and Gabriel Weinstein. The show’s executive producers are David Bryfman, Karen Cu…
 
This season of Adapting: The Future of Jewish Education will tackle some of the more challenging issues facing Jewish education today. You’ll be hearing from some of the most influential voices, discussing some of the more controversial issues – the ones that are more frequently spoken about behind closed doors than they are in public spaces. Adapt…
 
Did you know that that the most important thing you can do as a parent has nothing to do with how you interact with your children, but rather how you interact with your spouse? Rabbi Dr. Yosef Lynn, a marriage and performance coach, who has authored books on marriage and parenting, explains that he has given many classes on chinuch, and they all so…
 
What happens when you reimagine an ancient ritual like immersing in the mikveh? What is it that makes the mikveh’s restorative waters a powerful spiritual and educational experience? On this episode of Our Jewish Futures, Rabbi Amalia Mark of Mayyim Hayyim discusses her deep connection with the ritual of mikveh and how Mayyim Hayyim helps people fr…
 
Dovid is a writer, a professor, and the podcast host of 1840, an incredible podcast with so much substance to it. Dovid is also the Director of Education of NCSY. In this episode we discuss how to build grit in children, the importance of talking to our children about their feelings and helping them to articulate themselves. Dovid gives an amazing …
 
What will the history classroom of the future look like? Through what lens should educators teach about Judaism and other world religions? On this episode of Our Jewish Futures, historian and educator Rebecca Brenner Graham shares her ideas about the role of the “3 B’s”- Behavior, Belief, and Belonging- in history education and why she believes it …
 
Alex Fleksher is one of the most real people I have ever met, as you will see during this great conversation which contains so many great nuggets. It is no coincidence that Alex co-hosted the normal frum women podcast, which is now deep meaningful conversations. Alex is a very passionate writer and influencer within the Jewish community and has a v…
 
Akiva Carr is a passionate Jewish educator with 10 years of experience across varied age groups. He is in search of a meaningful way to transfer the skills and experience he has built over the years to others in the field. Akiva has recently moved into the field of crowdfunding for the non-profit sector with Charidy. Contact Akiva via email: akivac…
 
Akiva Carr is a passionate Jewish educator with 10 years of experience across varied age groups. He is in search of a meaningful way to transfer the skills and experience he has built over the years to others in the field. Akiva has recently moved into the field of crowdfunding for the non-profit sector with Charidy. Contact Akiva via email: akivac…
 
Joshua Sevitz on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/joshua-sevitz-mba-4a13a9109/ Do you want to learn about management in Jewish education? Listen to this episode to hear about the day-to-day ins and outs of a real-life on-the-ground leader of Jewish education teams. Josh brings wisdom and insight as he talks eloquently about the issues that Jew…
 
What are the core elements needed for a quality Jewish EdTech product? Russel Neiss’s answer will surprise you. Russel, a Jewish educator fluent in both Yiddish and Javascript, is a Senior Product Software Engineer at Sefaria. A longtime developer of Jewish EdTech products, Russel explains why quality educational design – and not fancy technology- …
 
For Rabbi Adina Allen, the word “creativity” is a code word for God. Rabbi Allen believes that everyone, despite what your art teacher may have told you, has inherent creative abilities. As the co-founder and creative director of the Jewish Studio Project, Rabbi Allen helps Jewish communal professionals and lay leaders harness their creative powers…
 
Newly published book: What Would You Do? You Write the Book on Being a Mensch https://www.amazon.com/What-Would-You-DO-Mensch/dp/B0B28HWFLQ https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/what-would-you-do-rabbi-dr-david-s-bauman/1141491349 Rabbi Dr. David Bauman Bio Rabbi Dr. Bauman has taught Tanakh and Talmud at Solomon Schechter Day School of Metropolitan Chi…
 
Why does Daniel Olson get frustrated when he hears the phrase “special needs” used to describe a child? Why does he believe that learners with disabilities receive only a “partial invitation to citizenship” in some Jewish educational settings? Daniel, the Director of Strategic Initiatives & Research at the National Ramah Commission, is a scholar wh…
 
"One of the most important things in education is the home you come from becasue you get more from the home than you get from the school." This weeks episode is very special and dear to me, as I had the opportunity to sit down with my wife’s grandfather, Zaida, the patriarch of our family. Zaida was a principal in Winnipeg for many years, as well a…
 
In a single moment, an educator can dramatically change a person’s life, even if they didn’t know it. It’s a lesson K.M. DiColandrea, aka DiCo, a 2021 Robert M. Sherman Young Pioneers Award recipient and director and founder of the Brooklyn Debate League, learned in the most unexpected way. DiCo shares his journey, and struggles, to follow his life…
 
What can be done to improve Hebrew language teaching and learning? T'helah Ben-Dan, a long time teacher and student of Hebrew, has a few ideas. On the third episode of Our Jewish Futures with Dr. Samantha Vinokor-Meinrath, T’helah speaks about Hebrew and Jewish identity, second language acquisition, empowering educators, and how Hebrew can serve as…
 
Rabbi Menachem Bombach went from being raised in Meah Shearim, in a completely Charedi world, to starting the first Charedi school with secular studies. What inspired Rabbi Bombach to do that? What drove him to want this? The first half of this episode, we will learn the answers to these questions, and hear a tremendous amount of educational wisdom…
 
Do you want to help your children become excited about Torah this Shavuos? Have their own Kabbolas HaTorah? If yes, this episode is for you. We will go through 5 simple, yet important, tips for parents to help their children gain an appreciate for the Torah. #1 - It Starts With Us #2 - How to Make Torah Exciting #3 - Sacred Time #4 - Celebrate #5 -…
 
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