Tuesday, September 26th, 2017

The Scholar-in-Residence Shabbat: Its Educational Benefits and Challenges by Erica Brown

December 13, 2010 by  
Filed under Education, New Posts

The scholar-in-residence Shabbat is often regarded as the crowning achievement of adult education committees in synagogues throughout the country. While synagogues of every denomination continue to offer weekly classes, the popularity of the scholar-in-residence weekend has become a distinct trend in congregational education. We all remember the days, not so long ago, when it was [...]

What is Lost as We Eliminate the Impossible: Jews and Public Schools by Gidon Rothstein

September 2, 2010 by  
Filed under Education, Jewish Culture, New Posts

Sherlock Holmes’ advice, “Eliminate the impossible; whatever is left, however improbable, must be the truth,” made a deep impression on me.  It seemed so logical, so unequivocal, so indisputable1.  In the years since I first encountered the epigram, I have realized some major weaknesses in its presentation; for our purposes, here, some of those weaknesses [...]

Would We Recognize the Ten Plagues Today? by Gidon Rothstein

August 22, 2010 by  
Filed under Education, New Posts

Thinking of the question raised in the title of this essay, we might instinctively answer, of course, because we’ve seen this movie so many times before. Were Moses to come today and tell us to do—well, whatever, really, but let’s leave it at abandoning the exile—we’d obviously do it. But that’s a mirage, because it [...]

From Where Shall Truth Be Found? by Gidon Rothstein

August 8, 2010 by  
Filed under Education, New Posts

On two recent occasions, I have had the similar and unsettling experience of noting the importance of finding the truth, only to have listeners speak of the impossibility, or at least great difficulty, of that task, on even basic issues. And, incidentally, I do not mean complex or debated truths, I mean ones that should [...]

Struggling with Books and Teachers: R’ Chaim Volozhiner’s Commentary to Avot 1:4 by Aryeh Klapper

April 12, 2010 by  
Filed under Education, New Posts, Talmud

משנה מסכת אבות פרק א:ד יוסי בן יועזר אומר: יהי ביתך בית ועד לחכמים, והוי מתאבק בעפר רגליהם, והוי שותה בצמא את דבריהם:  רוח חיים לאבות א:ד יהי ביתך בית ועד כו’ – יתכן לפרש כי במ”ח דברים שהתורה ניקנית בהם, כמבואר לקמן, א’ מהם הוא המחכים את רבותיו ע”י שאלותיו החריפים וממילא רווחא שמעתתא [...]

On (Not) Understanding the Reasons Behind Rabbinic Prohibitions: The Case of Teaching Shehiyah

August 26, 2009 by  
Filed under Education, Halakha, Talmud

 On (Not) Understanding The Reasons Behind Rabbinic Prohibitions:  The Case of Teaching Shehiyah by Daniel Reifman Teachers of Halakhah are often torn between conflicting agendas: on the one hand, to ensure that students have mastered all the laws relevant to contemporary observance, on the other hand, to familiarize them with a sense of the background—both the [...]