I was reminded recently that what we do in school may feel a little daunting to parents whose Hebrew School days were a while ago or non-existent, thereby putting a damper on those parents helping their kids to learn. (I feel the same about math homework, which I stopped overseeing as soon as our children reached middle school. Lucky for our kids, Don felt more analytically capable.)
But really, we the faculty and you the parents and grandparents are our “sacred partners” when it comes to Jewish Education. Every time you participate in one of our family programs, or sit next to your children during services, or get on the floor during Tot Shabbat to drum on the tambourines, you are doing sacred work. More important, you are fulfilling a role that we at TRT cannot do: you are leading by example. Because you are the first - and most important - teacher, children will learn the lessons you model even when they are arguing with you. When you listen to Hebrew prayers being read over and over again, your message to your child is that this is important work, not tedious repetition. Even if the work they are doing is too difficult for you, your encouragement and your questions allow the child to become the teacher; by doing so, they experience moments of complete empowerment.
Now we have really exciting news for both you and your student: as a result of a very generous donation from the Bowling league and a very generous private donation, we have purchased new laptops and tablets that we will load with self-teaching programs that you can use to brush up on your skills. Never mastered the Hebrew alphabet? No problem: we have an app for that. Used to be able to read but need a refresher? We have an app for that. Exploring this material for the first time? Yup, we have the interactive programs and up-to-date hardware to open doors for you. Carpool bring you to temple early? Bring your kids and play Hebrew games on our computers.
As of February, we will designate a dedicated “computer lab” that will be available to all. It will be a roving room, moving around as classrooms become available; have laptop, will travel.
The truth is, some traditions are worth continuing: grappling with Hebrew as a sacred language is still important; learning with your children and grandchildren is still crucial for connecting the younger generation with Judaism. We’ve just provided you with a different approach to learning, integrating cutting edge technology into our curriculum
Come see what’s new at TRT.