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A selection of initiatives, blogs, resources and communities on Jewcology which focus on Jewish education.


Blogs

Back from KAYAM

Back from The Farm Kayam Farm- the scene of "Planting Seeds: The First Jewish Early Childhood Conference." It was better than imagined. It was the participants willingness to "dig deeply" on all fronts that mattered. People came from as far as Seattle,North Carolina, Texas, Boston and Worcester, Florida and New York as well as from nearby Virgina, Pennsylvania,New Jersey and of course Baltimore. There were nature specialists, ece directors, teachers, a rabbi and a great mix of ages and persuasions. There were the gardeners and the ...

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Where the Fruit Comes From

It's humid and in the 90s, the sun is high in the summer sky, and it's time for blueberry picking! We picked ours a couple of weeks ago, on an organic farm not too far from our house. I love picking fruits and berries in the summer, but I find blueberries most enjoyable. Maybe it's the way that the abundance of berries just falls into your hands; maybe it's that the bushes are at arms level. Or maybe it's just that it's the first fruit we pick in the season. In the hustle of beginning summer, we have to remind ourselves to pick ...

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Where Is Our Revolution? A Call for a North American Sustainable Spring!

Spring is in the air. The youth and working class of Egypt and Tunisia have overthrown their repressive regimes while Syria, Libya, Yemen, Bahrain and other Arab nations are experiencing civil unrest. In Europe, a focus on economic austerity at the expense of the youth and working class has led to clashes in France and Greece. Indigenous peoples of Bolivia, Peru and other South American countries have been working to block mining, drilling and transportation across the Andes and Amazon basin. In these parts of the world, citizens have begun to recognize their ...

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What is Jewish Sustainability – Jewish Agency for Israel Assembly Session

Introduction & celebration Hello, My name is Einat Kramer. I am the founding director of Teva Ivri - an organization promoting Jewish sustainability in Israel. I am here with my friends & colleagues from the environmental movement in Israel that will facilitate the round tables sessions. Together, we are part of a far-reaching movement - the Jewish environmental movement. This movement is spread all over the world and getting bigger every day. This movement is made up of thousands of individuals from all streams of Judaism, ...

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Leadership Training at Hazon Food Conference, August 21

Are you educating the Jewish community about protecting the environment? Have you faced challenges with: motivating people into action? inspiring Jews who don’t have the same values as you? or moving a community into activism and shared commitment? Jewcology is partnering with educators from Harvard University on a new leadership training intended to address these specific issues, in order to empower Jews who are seeking to educate Jewish communities about the importance of protecting the environment. Date: Sunday August 21 Time: 10:30am-6:30pm...

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How counting to 50 can heal the planet

Last week we completed the Sefirat Ha-Omer, the counting of the 49 day period between Pesach and Shavuot, culminating with the celebration of Shavuot, which falls on the 50th day. In agricultural terms, this is a period of waiting in between the barley harvest and the wheat harvest in Israel. In religious terms, this period is a time for preparation and transformation that preceeds Matan Torah, the giving of the Torah at Mount Sinai. Sefirat Ha-Omer is very similar to the mitzva of Sefirat Ha-yovel, whereby we are enjoined to count 49 years and consecrate the 50th ...

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Honey from the Rock: Righteous Foundation

Shulchan Aruch Yoreh Deah 248:1(Code of Jewish Law) “Everyone is obligated to give Tzedakah. Even people supported by tzedakah must give from what they receive. Anyone who refuses to give tzedakah or gives less than what he should give, the court pressures him until he gives the amount he has been assessed. The court may confiscate his possessions and deduct from them the appropriate amount (for Tzedakah).” How can a court force someone to give tzedakkah? Tzedakah is commonly translated as charity which is given in a non-coercive manner. ...

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Reflections on a Religious School year almost past

It seems hard to believe, but with the Pesach holiday having past, there are only 2 weeks of classes remaining in my Religious School calendar. This being my 6th year teaching a Jewish / Environmental education curriculum to 6th graders, I feel I have developed a pretty good set of teachings which I have presented & discussed with my class. However, I can’t avoid the feeling that there is still so much left to teach these students that we haven’t yet had time to cover. With only 2 classes left, I am faced with the decision of how best to spend the ...

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Teva Rocks All Ages – Teva Seminar 2011

May 3, 2011 | 29 Nisan 5771 No matter what your age, Teva is going to kick-start your summer at this year's Teva seminar. Our Congregational Education programs from "Nurturing Connections - Spirituality in the Early Childhood Classroom" to "Lech Lecha - Bringing up a Congregation to Raise Jewish Youth" for B'nai Mitzvah teens, to "Geshem - The Eco-Orientation of Prayer" for those of us young at heart will engage and energize all ...

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The Inspiration of Engaging Judaism

As a Jewish environmental educator, people often ask me if my work more Jewish or more environmental. I usually refuse to answer the question in the simplistic form in which it’s asked, and instead offer an answer about the complete interconnectedness of the material... But, today, just for you, Jewcology readers, I will answer the original question with a little secret. While at my core, the cause I am working toward is environmental sustainability, the work is primarily Jewish education. Nature, ecology, environmental responsibility, are all tools to ...

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Tu B’Shvat Reflections and Beyond

Now that Tu B’Shvat has past and the Seder which my Sunday School class led is over, its time for some reflections on what went well and what could be improved upon. Following this period of reflection, it is also important to identify some ‘next steps’ as far as the direction to take my students in, as well as the direction to focus our collective efforts towards. While I feel some relief that the Tu B’Shvat seder is over and that it was a successful event for the community, there is also a feeling that the ideas discussed during the Tu ...

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The Language of Sustainability as Second Nature

As I continue to write about my experience in teaching a formal Judaism and the Environment course at a Jewish high school, I aim to share with you some of my personal and professional lessons along the way. This week I am wrapping up the first semester of my 11th grade Judaism and the Environment course. Each semester I have a new crop of students and I try to experiment with new ways of teaching the texts and contemporary examples to highlight the major concepts. For the sake of context, I covered three units this semester: Land Use, Water and Food. In ...

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