You Cannot Be What You Cannot See

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Transcript of You Cannot Be What You Cannot See

Four Steps to Exploring Primary Sources

You Cannot Be What You Cannot SeeSharing StoriesInspiring ChangeDiscussion about the stories we teachWhat do you notice about our list?How many are women? How many women are NOT biblical women?Why do our curricula look like this?What are the implications for student learning?Sharing StoriesInspiring ChangeDocumenting Jewish womens stories, elevating their voices, and inspiring them to be agents of change.Sharing StoriesInspiring ChangeThis discussion raises a fundamental assumption of our work at JWA: our students need diverse role models from which to draw lessons and explore their own identities.JWA is a national nonprofit working to create a gender inclusive narrative of history, especially within the Jewish community.Primary and secondary sources that you can use to learn about Jewish role models, famous and lesser known.



Sharing StoriesInspiring ChangeMyriad curricular materials and professional development opportunities including online learning.


RISING VOICES FELLOWSHIPSharing StoriesInspiring ChangeOpportunities for the next generation of Jewish leaders to explore the intersection of Judaism and feminism in our Rising Voices Fellowship. 5You Cannot Be What You Cannot See

Sharing StoriesInspiring ChangeJewish educators are essential partners.Educators are catalysts for bringing the rich and inclusive history of Jews in America to students of all ages and genders.Together we inspire (young) Jews to learn about who they want to be and what impact they want to have on the world.

6How can primary sources expand our narrative and engage our students?Text StudySharing StoriesInspiring ChangeText 1: A Letter from Henrietta SzoldCurricular Connections: Jewish rituals (Kaddish, prayers)Jewish heroes (Szold was founder of Hadassah)Life cycle (death and mourning)

Sharing StoriesInspiring ChangeNew York

September 16, 1916

It is impossible for me to find words in which to tell you how deeply I was touched by your offer to act as Kaddish for my dear mother. I cannot even thank you it is something that goes beyond thanks. It is beautiful, what you have offered to do I shall never forget it.

You will wonder, then, that I cannot accept your offer. Perhaps it would be best for me not to try to explain to you in writing, but to wait until I see you to tell you why it is so. I know well, and appreciate what you say about, the Jewish custom; and Jewish custom is very dear and sacred to me. And yet I cannot ask you to sayKaddish after my mother. TheKaddishmeans to me that the survivor publicly and markedly manifests his wish and intention to assume the relation to the Jewish community which his parent had, and that so the chain of tradition remains unbroken from generation to generation, each adding its own link. You can do that for the generations of your family, I must do that for the generations of my family.

Text 1: A Letter from Henrietta SzoldEssential Questions: How do we balance our communitys traditions with our own needs surrounding Jewish ritual?How are values passed on within families?How do we show respect for others?What needs do Jewish mourning rituals address?

Sharing StoriesInspiring Change10Text 1: Follow-up ActivitiesElementary School:Draw a picture of a time your own beliefs or ideas about ritual or tradition came in conflict with someone elses practice. Then draw a picture of how you responded.Middle School:Write a letter to a friend or family member about a ritual or tradition that is important to you. Be sure to explain why it is important.High School:Research how ritual traditions have changed in your community or family over time.

Sharing StoriesInspiring ChangeText 2: Advertisement from Mother EarthCurricular Connections: Holidays (Yom Kippur)Jewish values and action (what do our beliefs look like in public?)Evolution of ritual (how traditions have changed across time and place)Pluralism and religious diversity

Sharing StoriesInspiring Change

Essential Questions: What is the purpose of celebrating holidays?How and why are new traditions formed?How do I understand customs that are different from my own?

Text 2: Advertisement from Mother EarthSharing StoriesInspiring ChangeText 2: Follow-up ActivitiesElementary School:Draw a picture or write a poem about your favorite holiday that describes the special things you do to celebrate it.Middle School:Find a Jew who practices Judaism differently than you do and interview them about how they connect to and do Judaism.High School:Reimagine (or create a new) tradition at your school. It could be a new ritual, celebration, etc.

Sharing StoriesInspiring Change15Questions??16Natalia Twersky Educator Award

Honoring educators who share JWAs commitment to using primary sources to weave Jewish womens stories into their lessons and programs.Sharing StoriesInspiring Change17Who is eligible? What are the prizes? Any Jewish educator working with students in grades 6-12Two cash prizesWinner receives $2,000 + $400 for their school/programFinalist receives $500 + $100 for their school/programSubmission Deadline: June 1, 2015

Sharing StoriesInspiring ChangeExamples

Sharing StoriesInspiring Change19Submission requirementsStatement of purposeLesson planClassroom product (handout, assignment, etc.)Two examples of student workTwo letters of support (from supervisor, colleague, student, parent, etc.)

Sharing StoriesInspiring ChangeTHANK YOU!Sharing StoriesInspiring Change