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Constructivist - Kohelet Prize

The Kohelet Prize Database

Pedagogy: Constructivist

Interdisciplinary Perspectives on HeLa Cells

My 12th grade AP Language and Composition students read The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, a non-fiction text which explores the intersection of race, American history, and medical ethics through the lens of the discovery of an immortal cell line tied to an African-American woman named Henrietta Lacks. My students’ final project was to examine these intersections through a project that blended independent research with multi-media content. Of particular interest to this category is the student project that tackled the ethical questions raised in the text through the lens of Judaic studies; students who completed this project consulted primary sources as well as experts in Jewish medical ethics to create a presentation they later delivered to the entire student body.

By: Mrs. Vanessa Mehenti from Meira Academy

Grade(s): 11, 12, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Halacha, Literature/ English, Science

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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The Talent Center Handbook & Extra Challenge Project Kit

The Talent Center Handbook shows how to develop creative young Jewish leaders with an 18 word curriculum in just 30 Minutes a Week. Emek’s game-changing Extra Challenge Projects connect holistic Torah learning, technology, and Jewish design thinking through child-led community service passion projects.

By: Mrs. Rae Shagalov from Emek Hebrew Academy Teichman Family Torah Center

Grade(s): K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, Elementary school, Middle school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Halacha, History, Ivrit, Literature/ English, Math, Mishnah, Music, Science, Tanach

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, Constructivist, Montessorri, 21st Century Skills

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The Secret of Platform 13 – Fantasy Genre Study

The Secret of Platform 13, which inspired JK Rowling's Harry Potter, is a fantasy that will engage, thrill, and entice all students. It is filled with twists, turns, suspense, fantasy, and other elements. The final project included a choice board - an easy way to differentaite for all learners. Due to its interest level being above students' lexile, this was a read aloud.

By: Mrs. Missy Friedman, Mrs. Ilene Brot from Solomon Schechter Day School of Metropolitan Chicago

Grade(s): 3, 4, 5, Elementary school

Subject(s) of entry: Literature/ English

Pedagogy: Constructivist

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Ma’ayan Program: Differentiated Learning

Ma’ayan is a program we designed as a vehicle to ensure that all students, regardless of academic or other abilities and/or needs, participate in the school’s Hebrew and Judaics program, at a level that is appropriate for them. It is also designed to ensure that students who want to come to our school and have not been studying Hebrew and/or Judaics are not deterred from attending our school. Finally, it is a proven tool through which we provide Hebrew classes at a high enough/challenging level for Israeli students (or those who come to our school who are fluent in the language).

By: Ms. Gussie Singer, Ms. Etti Berkman from Joseph and Florence Mandel Jewish Day School

Grade(s): 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, Elementary school, Middle school

Subject(s) of entry: History, Ivrit, Literature/ English, Tanach

Pedagogy: IBL - inquiry based learning, UBD - understanding by design, Constructivist

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License to Read Hebrew

This is a reading program designed to foster an enjoyment of reading Hebrew while cultivating the skills necessary for navigating Jewish life.

By: Ms. Lisa Richman from Perelman Jewish Day School - Stern Center

Grade(s): 4, 5, 6, Elementary school, Middle school

Subject(s) of entry: Computer Science, Ivrit, Tanach, Siddur Liturgy, Hebrew Literature

Pedagogy: Constructivist, Blended Learning, 21st Century Skills

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Judaic Differentiation

I have created a system of differentiation where students can learn, practice and demonstrate Chumash (Bible) skills at their levels. Upon mastery, students create videos, where they apply acquired skills to unfamiliar text, to be virtual teachers for other students. The compilation of these videos gets posted to a website to populate a student-created Khan Academy for Judaic skills.

By: Rabbi Shmuel Chait, Mrs. Miriam Chait from TDS Seattle

Grade(s): K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, Elementary school, Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Gemara, Halacha, Ivrit, Mishnah, Tanach

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist, Montessorri, Blended Learning, 21st Century Skills

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English Language Learning in a Jewish Elementary School

I am applying for the Kohelet Prize for Differentiated Instruction on behalf of a team of teachers that has developed an individualized, highly differentiated English Language Learning program for students who speak English as their second (or third) language. Our program is designed to meet the needs of each specific student and is flexible enough to accommodate children of all elementary ages and abilities.

By: Dr. Kersten Biehn from Sandra E. Lerner Jewish Community Day School

Grade(s): K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, Elementary school

Subject(s) of entry: History, Ivrit, Literature/ English, Math, Science, Overall Judaic Studies and all other subjects are affected

Pedagogy: UBD - understanding by design, Constructivist

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Differentiated Instruction in a Learning Support Class

For the past 3 years I have been finding new ways to use differentiated instruction in my 2nd to 5th grade learning support classroom. In my class I teach students to take charge of their own learning in order to reach their potential. I use positivity and encouragement to build my students up so they have the confidence to take risks and try their best.

By: Mrs. Rachel Glauser from Perelman Jewish Day School-Forman Center

Grade(s): K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, Elementary school

Subject(s) of entry: Ivrit, Literature/ English, Math, Special Education

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist

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Andrew Clements Book Clubs

In this unit, 3rd grade students participated in differentiated, interest based book clubs with the work of author Andrew Clements. Students applied their annotation skills to these books, and met in groups over the course of a few weeks to discuss their findings.

By: Mrs. Missy Friedman, Mrs. Ilene Brot from Solomon Schechter Day School of Metropolitan Chicago

Grade(s): 3, 4, 5, Elementary school

Subject(s) of entry: Literature/ English

Pedagogy: IBL - inquiry based learning, Constructivist

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An Executive Functioning Model Implementing Differentiated Instruction

It is vital for children to develop the tools of Executive Functioning in order to discover their own sense of self, intrinsic motivation, self confidence, curiosity and exploration. Students who have the opportunities to develop Executive Functioning Skills are able to succeed in their learning and development, while participating in a learning environment which optimizes success. This model can be implemented across grades, in all subject areas, with varying levels of intervention, to provide differentiated instruction.

By: Mrs. Lorna Joffe from Perelman Jewish Day School

Grade(s): K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, Elementary school

Subject(s) of entry: Ivrit, Literature/ English, Math, This model can be used across all subjects

Pedagogy: Constructivist, Montessorri, 21st Century Skills

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Yad Hayotzer: An Interdisciplinary, Experiential Approach to Teaching the Prophets

Jeremiah Chapters 18-19 explore the interplay between God and His people as the fashioner of Jewish destiny through the agency of a potter. Jeremiah’s symbolic action comes to life as each student experiences "becoming" the potter, realizing the challenges of imprinting one’s vision on another. This project enhances the tefilla experience for our students as they explore the Yom Kippur piyyut - KaChomer BeYad HaYotzer, Like Clay in the Hands of the Potter - and helps shape their understanding of the roles of fate and free-will, both in the history of the Jewish people and in their own lives.

By: Rabbi Tzvi Pittinsky, Mrs. Rachel Besser, Mrs. Racheli Weiss-Luftglass, Mrs. Ahuva Winslow from The Frisch School

Grade(s): 9, 10, 11, 12, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, History, Music, Tanach

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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STEAM Initiative

The Ma’ayanot STEAM initiative orchestrates a learning environment which fosters creativity and reasoning, compelling students to evaluate, ideate, prototype, test, and iterate . Our philosophy is one of Constructionism which shares constructivism’s connotation of learning as ‘building knowledge structures’ and adds the idea that this happens most pronounced in a context where the learner is consciously engaged in constructing an entity. Students are forced to engage dynamically with their creations in order to prevail in the fruition of their design.

By: Mrs. Orly Nadler, Mrs. Gila Stein, Mrs. Reyce Krause from Ma'ayanot Yeshiva High School

Grade(s): 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Computer Science, Math, Science

Pedagogy: IBL - inquiry based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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Olivia’s Creative Compilations – Jewish Texts Come to Life!

Whether it is marrying off two characters from "Once Upon a Time" in an Orthodox Jewish ceremony, designing ad campaigns around Nezirut or creating Ten Plagues theme parks using Minecraft, my students have done it all. My mandate as a teacher is to enable students to access content in a rich, creative way that showcases their unique, creative thinking and knowledge on the topics.

By: Mrs. Olivia Friedman from Ida Crown Jewish Academy

Grade(s): 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: History, Literature/ English, Tanach

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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Making Space Holy

Fourth Grade students were challenged to transform the school's maker space into a full-scale Mishkan. Students self-organized to design and build the various components of the Mishkan using limited materials, tools, and resources. These constraints intentionally mimicked the design challenges faced by the Israelites.

By: Mr. Michael Hyde, Mrs. Amy Katz from Portland Jewish Academy

Grade(s): 4, 5, 6

Subject(s) of entry: History, Mishnah, Tanach, Engineering, Engineering Design

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, Constructivist

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Mah Nishtana Goes Tech

Over the course of last school year first graders learned the basics of coding using Scratch Jr. Each lesson in Scratch Jr. also included concepts that were taught elsewhere in the curriculum. The first graders extended their coding skills late last spring by programming our resident robots to travel to a designated spot and ask and answer the Mah Nishtana in the correct order as we had studied in class in preparation for Pesach.

By: Mrs. Toby Kaplowitz, Ms. Elissa Hozore from Beth Tfiloh Dahan Community School

Grade(s): 1, 2, 3, Elementary school

Subject(s) of entry: Computer Science, Halacha, Ivrit, Math

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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Life Under Shlomo: The Golden Years

Using information gleaned from I Kings 3-8, students designed tourism promotional websites about King Solomon's kingdom. Content areas covered needed to include: his administration and government, cultural sites, testimonials & reviews and a gift shop.

By: Mrs. Olivia Friedman from Ida Crown Jewish Academy

Grade(s): 9, 10, 11, 12, High school

Subject(s) of entry: History, Literature/ English, Tanach

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

View complete entry »

Jewish Heroes Congress

This unit was developed to help students increase their knowledge of mitzvot and virtues and help them be more discerning when choosing people to hold in high esteem.

By: Ms. Lisa Richman from Perelman Jewish Day School - Stern Center

Grade(s): 4, 5, 6, Elementary school, Middle school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Computer Science, History

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, UBD - understanding by design, Constructivist, Blended Learning, 21st Century Skills

View complete entry »

Developing Critical Thinking in a High School Statistics Class

Our submission, “Developing Critical Thinking in a High School Statistics Class,” aims to teach students the necessary tools and help them develop the perspective to critically analyze and evaluate numerical and statistical information. Teaching critical reading and critical thinking and creating opportunities for students to practice and develop these skills are key components of the unit. There are many possibilities for interdisciplinary integration and multi-level adaptations.

By: Ms. Alicia Sussman, Dr. Lea Keil Garson from Kohelet Yeshiva High School

Grade(s): K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, Elementary school, Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: History, Ivrit, Literature/ English, Math, Science

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, UBD - understanding by design, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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Accessing Artistic Intuition Through the Study of Chumash

Second grade students designed Chumash covers based on individual pasukim from Lech Lecha or Vayera. They brainstormed ideas and charted their creative thinking, making the steps of their process visible. The final image they designed and embroidered into their Chumash cover synthesizes symbols they generated based on words from the pasuk and colors the words represented to them.

By: Ms. Sarah Antine from Berman Hebrew Academy

Grade(s): K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, Elementary school, Middle school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Tanach

Pedagogy: IBL - inquiry based learning, Constructivist

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21st Century Personal Mishkan

Students collaborate to design/build a modern, personal Mishkan & furnishings, incorporating motifs, imagery from the ancient Mishkan, and applying wisdom gained from interviews with senior citizens, exploring: "What makes a quality life, and how can we make life better?" Students then return to Senior Center, using their completed designs as springboard for deeper reflection on how to heal after trauma and how to reach our deepest Human potential.

By: Mr. Evan Wolkenstein from JCHS of the Bay

Grade(s): 9, 10, 11, 12, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Tanach, architecture, design, Psychology, sociology, human relationships

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist, Blended Learning, 21st Century Skills

View complete entry »

In Defense of Learning Lishmah

Jewish educators often approach their subjects with the same modalities and grading system that are common in General Studies classes. Rather than continue with this approach, Shalhevet attempted to design two Judaic courses that would devalue letter grades and promote more authentic and deeper student learning. We were willing to take a calculated risk and we failed. While our initial pilot missed the mark, the effort has promoted some benefits and has jumpstarted further innovation in our approach to Judaic instruction.

By: Mr. Jason Feld, Mr. Noam Weissman from Shalhevet High School

Grade(s): 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Halacha, History, Literature/ English, Mishnah, Music, Tanach, Jewish Philosophy, Israel Education

Pedagogy: IBL - inquiry based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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Yonah and the Jonah Complex

We learned about how Yonah runs away from God and what his different motivations could have been. We spoke about how Abraham Maslow's "Jonah Complex" can be relevant in our lives when we prevent ourselves from success for fear of success.

By: Rabbi Dani Bauer from Kohelet Yeshiva High School

Grade(s): 9, 10, 11, 12, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Tanach, Psychology

Pedagogy: Constructivist

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Turning Dreams into Reality

In honour of our school's 18th anniversary and its initial visionaries, we launched a school-wide initiative looking at how to turn dreams into reality. Each grade integrated this theme with a core curricular unit. A detailed description of each grade's project as well as work samples are included with this submission.

By: Ms. Ellen Kelner from Paul Penna Downtown Jewish Day School

Grade(s): K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, Elementary school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, History, Ivrit, Literature/ English

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, UBD - understanding by design, Constructivist

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Torat Chayim: Real World Learning in Tanach and Gemara; Analysis and Integration through Real World Application

How do we engage students in the rigorous, text based learning of Tanach and Gemara while helping them learn how to apply their learning to their lives and the world around them? A portfolio of sample projects are provided that serve as different models in answering this question. These projects challenge student to extract values, apply and synthesize their learning in various "authentic" ways.

By: Rabbi Yehuda Chanales from Fuchs Mizrachi School

Grade(s): 9, 10, 11, 12, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Gemara, Halacha, Mishnah, Tanach

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, UBD - understanding by design, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

View complete entry »

The Jewish Primary Day School of the Nation’s Capital’s (JPDS-NC) Election Project 2016: Kid’s Voices Count

The Jewish Primary Day School of the Nation’s Capital’s (JPDS-NC) Election Project 2016: Kid’s Voices Count was an interdisciplinary, school-wide project that required the participation of every student and teacher at JPDS-NC. Students from Pre-Kindergarten through Sixth Grade delved into a variety of election issues, met with experts to deepen their understanding, met with and listened to other students in area schools to broaden their perspectives, and reflected on Jewish teachings that relate to the issues in the election. Each grade focused on a different election-related issue connected to their core curriculum, culminating in a Voter’s Guide distributed throughout our community and beyond.

By: Ms. Mindy Hirsch, Ms. Melissa Rickabaugh, Ms. Devora Yeganeh, Ms. Kelly McAllister, Ms. Vanessa Prell, Ms. Hanina Goldstein from Jewish Primary Day School of the Nation's Capital

Grade(s): K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

Subject(s) of entry: Art, History, Literature/ English, Tanach, Current Events, Social Studies, Jewish Text

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

View complete entry »

Authentic Service Learning through the Mitzvah Program at the Martin J. Gottlieb Day School

The mitzvah program at the Martin J.Gottlieb Day School was first introduced as an integral part of the middle school curriculum 22 years ago. The concept was based on the idea that after students studied Tanach, Jewish laws and customs, they were more likely to understand and accept the mitzvot if given the opportunity to put them into practice. It was also believed that students who became part of their community at large with service projects would grow to understand both their responsibility to the community and their ability to make a difference even at the young age of 11.

By: Mrs. Edith Horovitz from Martin J Gottlieb Day School

Grade(s): 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Gemara, Halacha, Mishnah, Tanach, Jewish Customs and traditions, Dinim U'Minhagim

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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Artificial Insemination in Halacha

We learned about the mitzvah of procreation and discussed some of the practical applications with modern medicine such as IVF.

By: Rabbi Dani Bauer from Kohelet Yeshiva High School

Grade(s): 11, 12, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Gemara, Halacha

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, UBD - understanding by design, Constructivist

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Where the heart feels at home – מקום שלבו חפץ

The Netivot Upper Elementary learning environment is warm, inviting, stimulating, and vibrant like no other. Our classroom setting incorporates collective responsibility, independence, freedom of movement, freedom of choice and peer learning, and utilizes multiple modalities of instruction. This ground-breaking classroom promotes growth in all areas, academic, social, emotional, and spiritual, embodying the adage: אין אדם לומד אלא במקום שלבו חפץ.

By: Mr. Dovi Yarmush, Rav Darren Levin, Mrs. Daniella Barishansky, Mrs. Shannon Tuorto from Yeshivat Netivot Montessori

Grade(s): K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, Elementary school, Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Computer Science, Gemara, Halacha, History, Ivrit, Literature/ English, Math, Mishnah, Music, Science, Tanach

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, UBD - understanding by design, Constructivist, Montessorri, 21st Century Skills

View complete entry »

The de Toledo High School Media Lab

The Amnon and Ronit Band Media Lab at de Toledo High School is an innovative learning environment which promotes academic, social, emotional, and spiritual growth. Over the last 12 years, the lab has evolved from a basic computer lab to a flexible and creative space designed to serve the varied educational needs of students and teachers in the media arts including: video production, animation, photography, graphic design, and computer science as well as serving the broader school community for instructional support, school and professional development.

By: Mr. Roger Blonder from de Toledo High School

Grade(s): 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Computer Science, Mishnah, Music, Science, Tanach, All academic subjects can be served by the media lab through interdisciplinary programs and projects.

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, UBD - understanding by design, Constructivist, Blended Learning, 21st Century Skills

View complete entry »

The Conscious Learning Environment

This video project is an in-house collaboration of the ideas and talents of six Lamplighters teachers. Each vignette features a different key element of what we call "the conscious learning environment." When teachers are conscious of the unique needs of each of the learners within a space and are willing to allow adaptability of infrastructure, furniture, objects and interactions--the environment becomes as living as the people who live and learn within its walls. NOTE: Please view the FULL project using the LINK below. (YouTube videos and .pdf are only a backup)

By: Mr. Moshe Schack, Rabbi Gershon Riesenberg, Miss Hinda Dalfin, Miss Gavi Goldberg, Mrs. Chana Gorin, Mrs. Ilana Spencer from Lamplighters Yeshivah

Grade(s): K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, Elementary school, Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Learning Environment

Pedagogy: Constructivist, Montessorri, Universal Design for Learning

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Technology… Innovation and Integration featuring the Startup Incubator

The Adelson Educational Campus has constructed a 5000 square feet, state-of-the-art, invention and entrepreneurial workshop: the Startup Incubator. In this space, teachers and mentors work collaboratively with students to employ the design cycle in identifying and tackling real-world challenges, prototyping a wide range of products via coding, digital media, and 3D fabrication. This innovative, interdisciplinary learning environment, paired with school wide one-to-world device deployment and extensive technology professional development, is providing our community a relevant and progressive “Education for Life.”

By: Dr. Camille McCue, Mr. Leon Wilde, Mrs. Robin Pence, Dr. Yvonne Houy, Miss Rachel Ziter, Mr. Tobin Herringshaw, Mr. David Philippus from The Adelson Educational Campus

Grade(s): 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Computer Science, Math, Science, Tanach, STEAM, Technology, Engineering

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

View complete entry »

Schechter Westchester’s MakerSpace

Our Idea Incubator (The INC) is the first MakerSpace built in a Jewish institution in North America. It houses Schechter Westchester’s Engineering and Entrepreneurship (E2) program, in which students take advantage of an innovative, modular learning environment to develop crucial skills such as creativity, collaboration, mechanical and electrical engineering, computer programming, public speaking, confidence, and—most importantly—fearlessness.

By: Dr. Danny Aviv from Solomon Schechter School of Westchester

Grade(s): 9, 10, 11, 12, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Computer Science, Math, Science

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, Constructivist, Blended Learning, 21st Century Skills

View complete entry »

Rookies Approach

Ivrit, differentiated instruction, centers, multisensory learning, responsive classroom

By: Mrs. Rookie Badouch from Torah Academy of Greater Philadelphia

Grade(s): K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, Elementary school, Middle school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Gemara, Halacha, History, Ivrit, Literature/ English, Math, Mishnah, Science, Tanach

Pedagogy: Constructivist, Blended Learning, 21st Century Skills

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Machshava Beit Midrash

Students today are busy, often overwhelmed, and increasingly stressed at school. The Machshava Beit Midrash is a learning environment where students are able to choose from a number of different philosophical and thought provoking books to learn alone or together with a chavruta. In addition, inspirational video and mindfulness training stations allow students to settle and better take control of their thoughts, creating a spiritual and meaningful atmosphere that hopefully permeates beyond the walls of the classroom.

By: Rabbi David Teller from Fuchs Mizrachi School

Grade(s): 9, 10, 11, 12, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Gemara, Halacha, Tanach, Jeish Philosophy, Jewish Ethics

Pedagogy: IBL - inquiry based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

View complete entry »

Kindergarten Learning Environment

A classroom environment utilizing nine distinct stations. Stations provide for student exploration, and help them develop deeper connections to their learning.

By: Mrs. Devorah Locker from Yeshiva Day School of Las Vegas

Grade(s): K

Subject(s) of entry: Halacha, Ivrit, Tanach

Pedagogy: Constructivist

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Innovative Learning in a Flexible Space

Our new innovation studio houses iPad Pros, Chromebooks, a green screen and a 3D printer. We offer flexible seating to accommodate a variety of educational needs, as well as a movable wall so our space can expand as needed.

By: Ms. Deborah Harris, Mrs. Marci Rubinstein from Solomon Schechter Day School of Metropolitan Chicago

Grade(s): K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, Elementary school, Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Computer Science, Gemara, Halacha, History, Ivrit, Literature/ English, Math, Mishnah, Science, Tanach, Design Thinking

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

View complete entry »

Area 251

Our program provides a constructivist based pedagogy that facilitates real world, solution-based, student outcomes. The makerspace provides for a hands-on learning environment that uniquely inspires creativity, invites curiosity and celebrates individual solutions.

By: Mrs. Robyn Brewer from The Jewish Educational Center RTMA

Grade(s): 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Computer Science, Science

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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A Learning Environment that promotes academic, social, and emotional growth

The best way for students to learn optimally is for them to learn in a physical environment, which meets their diverse needs. It is vital for all children to develop the tools of Executive Functioning in order to discover their own sense of self, intrinsic motivation, self confidence, curiosity and exploration. Students who have the opportunities to develop Executive Functioning Skills are able to succeed in their learning and development, while participating in a learning environment which optimizes success.

By: Mrs. Lorna Joffe from Perelman Jewish Day School

Grade(s): K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, Elementary school

Subject(s) of entry: Ivrit, Literature/ English, Math

Pedagogy: Constructivist, Montessorri, 21st Century Skills

View complete entry »

The N.E. Miles Jewish Day School Social Justice and Leadership Initiative

The N.E. Miles Jewish Day School social justice and leadership initiative is guided by the core beliefs and values on which our school is based. To that end, we provide real-life experiences for the students to participate actively in three of the guiding Jewish values- Menschlichkeit, Tikkun Olam, and Torah Study.

By: Ms. Liora Chessin, Mrs. Lynn Raviv from N.E. Miles Jewish Day School

Grade(s): 6, 7, 8, Middle school

Subject(s) of entry: History, Literature/ English, Tanach

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist, Blended Learning, 21st Century Skills

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The History of Light

A 4-6 week long interdisciplinary unit, which ties together research and presentation skills, Chanukah, Israel, New Jersey History, the science of electricity, and the use of light as a medium in art.

By: Mrs. Bonnie Drazen, Rabbi Yossi Berg, Mrs. Batsheva Blum, Mr. Craig Brimmer, Ms. Laura Carroll, Mrs. Lexi DiFiglia, Mrs. Gittel Goldberg, Rabbi Avi Herzog, Mrs. Naava Hess, Mr. Sean Lang, Rabbi Meir Lipschitz, Mrs. Barbara Mastic, Mrs. Calah Reisman, Mrs. Aliza Ross, Mrs. Sophia Shweky from Yeshiva at the Jersey Shore

Grade(s): 3

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Halacha, History, Ivrit, Literature/ English, Science, Tanach, Israel

Pedagogy: Constructivist

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The Gift of Mincha: Drawing From the Text, Building a Siddur

This course addresses the driving question: “How might we improve our school's daily mincha experience through creating an originally drawn, translated, and annotated school siddur?” In this project-driven, team-taught, and inter-disciplinary senior Art/Judaics course, students respond to a very familiar text--the mincha siddur--through contemplative, artistic, and written avenues. Through studying the text in both a critical and soulful manner, and by creating and crafting their own translations, illuminations, commentaries, and illustrations, students are in the process of jointly building a siddur that will be used as the school community's daily mincha text.

By: Dr. Hillel Broder, Mr. David Friedman, Mr. David Wander from SAR High School

Grade(s): 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Gemara, Halacha, Literature/ English, Mishnah, Tanach

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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The Akiva Broadcasting Network

The Akiva Broadcasting Network (ABN) is an interactive, team-oriented program of study where students develop communications skills; broadcast technology and technical skills; and critical life skills, integrating Jewish and Secular Studies across the curriculum.

ABN is part of the Kid TV program developed by Professor Larry Katz with the objective to teach cross curricular skills to students through the creation of TV newscasts that are shared with other members of their school community via an internal broadcast network and are also shared on the school website. Student select the news items, prepare the D’vray Torah, and stories on famous Jewish personalities, write the scripts, shoot and edit the stories, do the interviews, take on the roles of anchors and reporters, manage the broadcasts and handle all of the technical jobs
(https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dj_uSY53-dM&feature=youtu.be).

By: Rabbi Michael Greenwald, Rabbi Chaim Goldenberg, Professor Larry Katz, Ms. Alexandra Sibson from Akiva Academy

Grade(s): 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, Elementary school, Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Computer Science, Gemara, Halacha, History, Ivrit, Mishnah, Music, Science, Tanach

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, Constructivist

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Project GO FORTH: Lech L’Cha: A Cross-Curricular Study of Immigration and Personal Narrative

Project GO FORTH: Lech L’Cha is a multi-faceted, interdisciplinary approach to understanding the immigrant experience in America. Project GO FORTH: Lech L’Cha integrates seventh grade Social Studies, in which students study the history of American immigration, with Language Arts, in which student examine creative writing and sensory language, with Judaic Studies, in which students specifically explore the parsha Lech L’Cha as a lens through which they can understand the spiral of Jewish History with the originating immigrant experience of Avraham.

By: Ms. Ariel Levenson, Mrs. Staci Zeif from Joseph Kushner Hebrew Academy

Grade(s): Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: History, Literature/ English, Tanach

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, UBD - understanding by design, Constructivist, Blended Learning, 21st Century Skills

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Philosophical Ethics and the Meeting of Minds

We are delighted to share our entry in the Interdisciplinary Integration category: the “Philosophical Ethics” unit of our junior year Integrated American Literature, Jewish and Western Philosophy course, affectionately referred to as “Tikvah. The unit culminates with the Meeting of Minds project.

By: Rabbi Tzvi Sinensky, Dr. Eileen Watts from Kohelet Yeshiva High School

Grade(s): High school

Subject(s) of entry: Gemara, Halacha, History, Literature/ English, Tanach

Pedagogy: IBL - inquiry based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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Pesach Haggada Scrapbook

Middle School learned about Pesach from a multiplicity of perspectives and incorporated their learning into a usable Haggada scrapbook.

By: Rabbi Meir Lipschitz, Rabbi Yossi Berg, Mrs. Batsheva Blum, Mr. Craig Brimmer, Ms. Laura Carroll, Mrs. Lexi DiFiglia, Mrs. Bonnie Drazen, Mrs. Gittel Goldberg, Rabbi Avi Herzog, Mrs. Naava Hess, Mr. Sean Lang, Mrs. Barbara Mastic, Mrs. Calah Reisman, Mrs. Aliza Ross, Mrs. Sophia Shweky from Yeshiva at the Jersey Shore

Grade(s): 6, 7, 8

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Gemara, Halacha, History, Ivrit, Literature/ English, Science, Tanach

Pedagogy: Constructivist

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Megillat Esther – a Historical, Political, and Psychological View

Over the course of Megillat Esther, we learned about how psychology, history, and political theory can change how we read the story. With basic information from a political theorist, some analysis of fascist leaders, and some basic principles of psychology, we tried to understand the motivations of the characters in Megillat Esther.

By: Rabbi Dani Bauer from Kohelet Yeshiva High School

Grade(s): 9, 10, 11, 12, High school

Subject(s) of entry: History, Tanach, Psychology, Political Science

Pedagogy: UBD - understanding by design, Constructivist, Constructivist, Socratic Method

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The Makers Movement @ Kellman Brown Academy

Kellman Brown Academy is committed to the principle that ALL of our students are critical thinkers and problem-solvers. Through introducing the Makers Movement into the culture of the school, students are challenged to "make" what they need to solve real-world problems using their imagination and any materials they can get their hands on. The Makers culture promotes independence, ingenuity, and collaborative work.

By: Mrs. Chelsea Saraczewski, Mrs. Helene Sterling from Kellman Brown Academy

Grade(s): Elementary school, Middle school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Computer Science, Math, Science

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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Sukkah Design and Build Challenge

16 seventh grade students were presented with a real problem -- that MJDS has no Sukkah. Their challenge was to design, prototype, build and decorate a kosher Sukkah in time for Sukkot. The results were stunning; but the process was even more so.

By: Mr. Brian King from Milwaukee Jewish Day School

Grade(s): 6, 7, 8, Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Halacha, Ivrit, Math, Tanach, Structural Engineering

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, UBD - understanding by design, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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JanTerm Integrative Research Project

The JanTerm Integrative Reseach Project is a month-long (in January) intensive project where students learn and practice research and writing skills across content areas. By reconfiguring the students' schedule, students are allowed longer blocks of time to conduct research, write a formal research paper, meet and edit with a mentor-teacher, as well as work on hands-on projects. In this time, our Judaic Studies curriculum works in tandem, guiding the students to study the same theme from a Jewish lens. The students also work on creating a final project that reflects their learning of the Jewish texts and principles related to the overall theme.

By: Mrs. Rachel Zivic, Ms. Jessica Broomfield, Mrs. Ellen Barmach, Rabbi Michah Liben from Kellman Brown Academy

Grade(s): 5, Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Gemara, Halacha, History, Literature/ English, Math, Mishnah, Science

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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Israeli Art Masters

Our multi-modal arts program offers an innovative approach to Jewish arts education which includes our Israeli Art Masters Program. The goal of this program is to weave together the study of fine arts with learning about the Land and history of Israel, appreciation of the Israeli landscape, exploration of Jewish artistic inspiration, the study of Hebrew vocabulary and Positive Discipline Social Emotional Learning. Through this program students have studied various artists from Israel as well as the inspirations and techniques used in their art. In parallel the students compare the color wheel to the Positive Discipline "wheel of choice" which relates the processes of an individual's problem solving decisions to an individual artist's thoughtful artistic choices.

By: Mrs. Anat Levi from Irvine Hebrew Day School

Grade(s): K, 1, 2, 3

Subject(s) of entry: Art, History, Ivrit, Tanach, Jewish History

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, UBD - understanding by design, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills, Social-emotional learning

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Human Body- Bones, Joints, and Muscles

This unit highlights the skeletal-muscular system. Incorporating science, math, writing, reading, and art, students learned about the bones, joints, and muscles and how they work together as a system. They also visited with an expert in the field who was able to provide them with real life connections to what they learned in the classroom.

By: Mrs. Missy Friedman, Mrs. Ilene Brot from Solomon Schechter Day School of Metropolitan Chicago

Grade(s): 3

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Computer Science, Literature/ English, Math, Science

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist, Blended Learning

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Student Council- Real-World Learning

The Perelman Jewish Day School Student Council inspires real-world learning of civic engagement in our school. The Student Council provides students with opportunities for leadership and ownership of actual student issues. Students have a forum for discussing our school environment and exemplifying good citizenship.

By: Mrs. Rachel Korman from Perelman Jewish Day School

Grade(s): Elementary school, Middle school

Subject(s) of entry: Civic Learning

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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Sinai Akiba Academy New Horizon Day School Exchange

Sinai Akiba Academy, a Jewish day school, partners with New Horizon School, a Muslim day school. Through art, text-study, games, and prayer, students come to see their "buddies," as individuals rather than as members from a faith group.

By: Mrs. Rebecca Berger from Sinai Akiba Academy

Grade(s): Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: History, Literature/ English, Jewish History

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, UBD - understanding by design, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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Shinshinim Integration Program

A group of Israeli teenagers (Shinshinim) who are volunteering in Toronto for the year join my Grade 12 Israeli history course for one lesson a week. The students learn about Israel together and share and challenge each other's understandings about Israel. The Israeli teens provide first-hand experience and real-world knowledge about Israel and change the nature and dynamic of the course because of their involvement.

By: Dr. Matt Reingold from TanenbaumCHAT

Grade(s): High school

Subject(s) of entry: History

Pedagogy: Constructivist

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Hands On Hydroponics

After learning about the climate in Israel and their hydroponics projects, students with teacher built a hydroponics tank and also each student created his or her own hydroponic system.

By: Ms. Diana Kovinsky, Ms. Gerri Chizeck from Levey Day School

Grade(s): 3, 4, 5, 6

Subject(s) of entry: Science, Israel

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist

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Haggadah Companion

The Haggadah Companion was a collaborative, cumulative project among the Judaic, language arts, art, and technology disciplines. It was designed as a supplement to any Haggadah.

By: Rabbi Avrohom Gordon, Mrs. Andrea Gamlin, Mrs. Donna Lerner from Charlotte Jewish Day School

Grade(s): 4, 5, 6, 7, 8

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Computer Science, Literature/ English, Math, Jewish Holidays

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist, Blended Learning, 21st Century Skills

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Real World Judaic Learning

Using this program, students can use their skills in a real-world setting and share their learning with others. Students apply learned skills to create a video of unfamiliar text as a demonstration for other students. The collection of these videos gets posted to a website to compile a student-created Khan Academy for Judaic skills.

By: Rabbi Shmuel Chait from Torah Day School Seattle

Grade(s): Elementary school, Middle school

Subject(s) of entry: Tanach

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist, Montessorri, 21st Century Skills

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Real life Hebrew Immersion

Students actively converse in Hebrew with their peers in class, at recess and at home, thereby making Hebrew not merely a subject they learn at school but a language they own and use. Students attain Hebrew fluency through engaging in games and collaborative real world Hebrew projects.

By: Rabbi Yaakov Nadler from Yeshivat Noam

Grade(s): Elementary school, Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Gemara, Ivrit, Mishnah, Tanach

Pedagogy: Constructivist, Gamification

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EVERlab

The 9th grade EVERlab unit focuses on the integration of the concepts, themes and structures from two different courses: Tanach I and Ancient World Civilizations. The unit begins with students brainstorming the overlapping content from eachcourse and moves through scaffolded design, collaboration, and critical thinking exercises in order for students to refine and deepen integrated topics they have chosen themselves. Students ultimately develop projects that demonstrate this integrated thinking.

By: Ms. Robin Gluck, Evan Wolkenstein from Jewish Community High School of the Bay

Grade(s): 9, 10, 11, 12, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, History, Literature/ English, Science, Tanach, Design Thinking

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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Dreaming with Yaakov to Search for Meaning

Dreaming with Yaakov takes learners on a journey through bibliodrama, geography, social studies, journal writing, archaeology, and art history, visual art, Tanach and Rabbinics, in order to explore what the story of Yaakov has meant to readers over the ages. The ultimate goal of which is to prepare students to see themselves as participants in the Jewish tradition of meaning making.

By: Mr. Eran Rosenberg, Ms. Susan Couden from Columbus Jewish Day School

Grade(s): 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, Elementary school, Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Computer Science, History, Ivrit, Literature/ English, Tanach, Midrash, Social Studies

Pedagogy: IBL - inquiry based learning, UBD - understanding by design, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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Passion Learning for Elementary Schools

Kindergarten through 5th grade students exercise already existing passions or new interests in multi-age/grade elective classes. Electives span such disciplines as sports, computer programming, engineering, robotics, culinary arts, fine arts, the environment, etc...

By: Ms. Allison Oakes from Sandra E. Lerner Jewish Community Day School

Grade(s): K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, Elementary school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Computer Science, Literature/ English, Math, Music, Science, Also, physical education, Jewish life, environment, strategic thinking

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist, Blended Learning, 21st Century Skills

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B*E*S*T Layer of Learning

Going back to the primary source- Teaching TaNaKh from TaNaKh using the B*E*S*T method. Enabling students to 'own' the text making their learning limitless- not confined to instructional teaching.

By: Rabbi Avraham Benhamu from Yeshivah of Flatbush

Grade(s): Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Tanach

Pedagogy: Constructivist

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Moot Beit Din versus Moot Court

With the right teacher, the study of Jewish Law and the Jewish Legal System (Mishna and Gemara) is exciting, insightful, and extremely relevant to contemporary issues. What most students do not know is that British Common Law (the source for the U.S. and Canadian Legal Systems) has its basis in Jewish Law. Moot Court versus Moot Beit Din is a program that takes composite, real life legal problems, and divides students into two teams who research, recreate, and present each side of the case before both a Beit Din and a civil court giving the students incredible real world experiences.

By: Rabbi Chaim Goldenberg from Akiva Academy

Grade(s): 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

Subject(s) of entry: Gemara, Halacha, Mishnah

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, Constructivist

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And There Was Light

This is an interdisciplinary unit, teaching the history of festivals and religions involving light across many cultures. Students were exposed to the symbolism of light in literature and Torah as well as the science of light in creating day and night, seasons and electricity with the creation of lamps in the school's pottery labs. Students learned Tfillot and added the Hallel for Hanukkah the festival of light, as well as created a book demonstrating of all of their learning.

By: Mrs. Michal Almalem, Mrs. Tamar Hershkovitz, Mrs.Cindy Van Gunda, from Bornblum Jewish Community School

Grade(s): 5, 6, Elementary school, Middle school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, History, Ivrit, Literature/ English, Mishnah, Music, Science, Tanach

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, UBD - understanding by design, Constructivist, Montessorri, Blended Learning, 21st Century Skills, Modeling

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L’Dor V’Dor: Linking Youth to Elders from the Ground Up

L’Dor V’Dor provides deep one-on-one encounters between students K-6 from Columbus Jewish Day School and Jewish and non-Jewish elders around lifecycle and holiday events. Through carefully planned and facilitated exercises, simulations, and activities, the intergenerational wisdom of elders interacts with the joy of youth among participants aged 6-106, through the use of art, music, text study, guided interactions, prayer, and more.

By: Dr. Gina Freeman from Columbus Jewish Day School

Grade(s): K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, Elementary school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Computer Science, History, Literature/ English, Music, Tanach, Midrash

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, UBD - understanding by design, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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Israeli Knesset Simulation

The Israeli Knesset Simulation is a combination of live role-playing and online virtual world interaction in which high school seniors immerse themselves in Israeli politics by becoming members of Knesset. By playing a specific character, learning the party platform, and drafting legislation through committee work, the seniors engage in Israel from the inside-out, breaking down the barriers between their education and the real world.

By: Rabbi Natan Kapustin from Abraham Joshua Heschel High School

Grade(s): 11, 12

Subject(s) of entry: History, Social Studies

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, Constructivist, Blended Learning, 21st Century Skills

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Innovating Real-World Solutions in the Startup Incubator

The Adelson Educational Campus has constructed a 5000 square feet, state-of-the-art, invention and entrepreneurial workshop: the Startup Incubator.

In this space, teachers and mentors from university and industry work collaboratively with students to employ the design cycle in identifying and tackling real-world challenges. Prototyping a wide range of products from mobile apps and digital videos to IoT devices and drones, students ultimately develop not only solutions but lean startups through our relevant and progressive “Education for Life.”

By: Dr. Camille McCue, Mr. Leon Wilde, Mrs. Robin Pence, Dr. Yvonne Houy, Miss Rachel Ziter, Mr. Tobin Herringshaw, Mr. David Philippus from The Adelson Educational Campus

Grade(s): Middle school, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Computer Science, Tanach, STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, mathematics)

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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HBHA Upper School Social Justice Project

Imagine an educational experience in which Jewish teenagers have the opportunity to take their classroom learning and direct that knowledge into a course of action that enhances their education and the Greater Kansas City community. This experiential learning is happening at Hyman Brand Hebrew Academy, in the form of the Upper School Social Justice Project. I developed and implemented this project - in partnership with peers from an urban charter school, as well as local leaders - which facilitates personal growth and community activism in our students as they address issues such as health care access, voter engagement, and universal early childhood education.

By: Mr. Todd Clauer from Hyman Brand Hebrew Academy

Grade(s): 9, 10, 11, 12, High school

Subject(s) of entry: Gemara, Halacha, History, Literature/ English, Mishnah, Tanach, Civics/Government

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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Halacha and Technology: An Interdisciplinary, Hands-on Approach

Our senior elective, Merging Halachic Judaism with Modern Life, combines the study of and appreciation of Jewish law with the study of engineering and its principles. In the first half of the year, students learn Hilchot Shabbat and how these laws manifest in modern life. In the second half the year, students work in groups to identify and create a working prototype that merges both Halachic implications and modern technology to enhance the Shabbat experience. Students, thereby, learn to view the latest technological innovations through the prism of a religious perspective.

By: Mrs. Rifkie Silverman from The Frisch School

Grade(s): 12

Subject(s) of entry: Computer Science, Gemara, Halacha, Science

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, Constructivist, 21st Century Skills

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Ancient Egypt

When beginning the study of parshat Shmot, students recall that by the end of sefer Breisheet the Hebrews dwelled in Egypt. We are reminded in the first few verses of Shmot that Jacob and his family made their way to Egypt and that Joseph already resided there. As the story unfolds, a rich understanding text can be gained from learning about ancient Egypt and seeing how its culture and environment impacted the Hebrews.

By: Ms. Lisa Richman from Perelman Jewish Day School - Stern Center

Grade(s): 5, 6, Elementary school, Middle school

Subject(s) of entry: Art, Computer Science, History, Ivrit, Tanach, Social Studies/History - Ancient Civilization

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, IBL - inquiry based learning, UBD - understanding by design, Constructivist, Blended Learning, 21st Century Skills

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Environmental Education Across the Curriculum: Developing Connected Thinkers For Our Global Future

I teach my students that all of learning and all of life is connected. When we realize connections, we celebrate our
learning. The attached PDF titled Real-World Learning explains how my students learn about the environment and the real world around them by being exposed to connections inside and outside of the classroom and by being encouraged to question and to create ideas.

My presentation begins with the PDF titled Real-World Learning. Thank you!

By: Mrs. Jodi Deichman from Katz Hillel Day School of Boca Raton

Grade(s): 4, 5, 6, 7

Subject(s) of entry: Computer Science, History, Literature/ English, Math, Science

Pedagogy: PBL - project based learning, UBD - understanding by design, Constructivist, Blended Learning, 21st Century Skills

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