/Teaching Methods

Students Delve Into the Mysteries of a Seceding Kingdom, Multiple Golden Calves, and Ten Lost Tribes

This year, our sixth graders were drawn into a mystery in their Judaic Studies class. Exploring the text of Melachim Bet, Kings II, they discovered that puzzling stories abound in our past, rich with plots, lost tribes, confounding motives, and the appearance of multiple golden calves. And with these mysteries came many opportunities to question, research, analyze, and present differing perspectives. It was a rich learning experience that included examining and deconstructing evidence through textual …

June 29, 2016 |By |Author Type: Faculty and Staff |Topics: Judaic Studies, Teaching Methods|Tags: |

JPDS-NC Partners with Kiddovate to Offer “Innovation in Action” Workshops for Area Teachers

This year, we have been offering a series of teacher workshops called Innovation in Action in partnership with Kiddovate. This professional development opportunity is open to JPDS-NC as well as other area teachers. We met three times this school year and have two more sessions to explore innovative teaching strategies. Each workshop explored Kiddovate’s Innovation in Action™ methodology, a Design Thinking process, and focused on specific skills and tools teachers can use in the classroom …

May 12, 2016 |By |Author Type: Faculty and Staff |Topics: Education, Teaching Methods|Tags: Design Thinking, STEAM|

Making Thinking Visible Through the Use of Materials

If you walk in the front door of South Campus this week, you might see First Grade students and teachers digging through big boxes and recyclables to be used for prototypes of homes in a polar climate. You also might see Kindergarten students manipulating clay to create their final model of a queen bee. In the sadnah (studio), you might overhear a Pre-Kindergartner explaining to a peer her plan to cut the fabric she found into the perfect bimah (platform) for the …

Avoiding the Around and About to Teach the Text

I had a Bible Professor who often said about the Biblical text, “Everything else is around it or about it. This is it.” I feel that way about the various genres of Jewish texts, both biblical and Rabbinic. For our children to be educated Jews, it is not enough for them to learn around them or about them. They need to learn them. Teaching Jewish texts poses a number of challenges in Jewish day schools: …

January 6, 2016 |By |Author Type: Faculty and Staff |Topics: Judaic Studies, Teaching Methods|Tags: |

Learning and Building Connections with iBuddies

The Sixth Grade and Kindergarten classes at JPDS-NC participate in a program called iBuddies. Every Kindergartener is assigned to a Sixth Grade buddy who uses technology to help them research the projects they work on in class. On their last visit, buddy teams worked on finding and creating patterns for the Kindergarten math unit, and discussed and illustrated the story of Creation for the Judaic Studies unit. iBuddies helps Kindergarteners to learn, be creative, experience …

Driving More Student Engagement, Agency, Collaboration, and Creativity

Utilizing Research-based 21st Century Approaches to Education at JPDS-NC: The beginning of a new school year is always an exciting time… but this year, we are more energized by our future than ever. We welcomed 334 students through our doors a few days ago; at the North Campus, we warmly welcomed our first cohort of students who began their JPDS-NC experience at the South Campus; and we are excited by ongoing plans to open our …

Thinking Critically About American History

“History gives us ideas. Let’s say something good happened. We can use it in the future to help people.” “In American History, there’s been a lot of wars, like the War of 1812 and the American Revolution. We can learn about what happened and say, ‘This was wrong’ and ‘I’ll turn it all around and do this different and make it better.’” After a trip to the Smithsonian’s American History Museum, Hadasim children realized that …

The Sadnah: Creativity and Exploration on the South Campus

“Children need the freedom to appreciate the infinite resources of their hands, their eyes and their ears, the resources of forms, materials, sounds and colours.” – Loris Malaguzzi   On the South Campus, we are privileged to have a dedicated studio space, the Sadnah, which is a place for creative collaboration and inspiration for all the students and teachers. Formerly the carriage house of the property, the Sadnah was transformed into a space filled with …

May 7, 2015 |By |Author Type: Faculty and Staff |Topics: Arts, Teaching Methods|Tags: Project Based Learning, STEAM, Visual Arts|

STEM Learning in Action

STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) education is growing and thriving at JPDS-NC. On the evening of April 2, four JPDS-NC sixth graders attended the Grand Award Ceremony of DC STEM Fair 2015 at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History. Esther Feron, Sami Himmelfarb, Noa Schleifer and Beri Gershwind swept the Junior Division with 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th place wins for individual projects in the categories of Physics and Astronomy, Microbiology, and Engineering. They …

Students Build an Arcade in our Cardboard Box Challenge

Over the course of four months, students at JPDS-NC worked with passion and resourcefulness to design and build arcade games out of recycled materials as part of the Cardboard Box Challenge. The program seeks to foster creativity, entrepreneurship, and design thinking in children, as they work together with their parents and with one another to imagine, design and construct arcade games. Spearheaded by JPDS-NC Science Teacher Alexandra Taylor, the Cardboard Box Challenge was an amazing …