When mentoring our pre-service and in-service teachers we need to describe and model both research-based and clinically tested best practices. This is one of many lessons we will be sharing on teaching Judaic content, lesson planning, models of teaching, differentiated and individualized instruction and learning activities designed to transform the classroom into a Jewish community of cooperative learners. The title of this lesson is “What is Enduring Jewish Knowledge?” Since there are 13 elements in each lesson plan we will divide this lesson plan into four parts. Here are the first, second and third parts of the lesson on enduring Jewish knowledge. The fourth part of this lesson follows:
Developmental Activity: (Set of procedures or steps to reach the objective/learning outcome)
1. After students have individually recorded the information on their charts, place them into learning triads (i.e. cooperative groups of three) or quads (i.e. cooperative groups of four).
2. First demonstrate and model Round Robin Brainstorming to the class. Here are the rules for Round Robin Brainstorming:
The teacher (or a student) poses a question that has multiple answers. Students, in triads or quads, verbally share one new idea in round robin fashion with their group members. The rules for brainstorming include:
1. Say anything that comes to mind during the time limit.
2. You may repeat, modify or piggyback on ideas previously presented.
3. Do not discuss, praise, criticize, or reject any ideas presented.
4. Select someone to record the ideas.
5. Evaluate the ideas after brainstorming is completed.
Note: After Round Robin Brainstorming is completed the students can record the complete list of ideas in their notebooks.
Guided Practice: (Students apply new skill/s or strengthen previously learned skills during classroom instruction.)
1 When satisfied that your students understand the rules and can successfully applyRound Robin Brainstorming, invite them to participate in this cooperative procedure. Carefully monitor their interactions.
2. Conduct a classroom discussion on the three categories of Jewish knowledge: Knowledge that is enduring, knowledge that is important, and knowledge with which Jewish people should be familiar.
Independent Activities: (Students practice new skill/s or strengthen previously learned skills outside of the class.)
1. Students can ask their parents, grandparents, or another teacher these questions: What is enduring Jewish knowledge? What Jewish knowledge is important to know? With what Jewish knowledge should Jewish people be familiar?
2. Students then record the responses of the person they interviewed in their notebooks.
3. Students should be prepared to share what they had learned during the interview with their classmates.
Closure: (Activity that summarizes and ends the lesson)
Summarize the students’ answers and indicate that enduring Jewish knowledge is the essential body of information that an educated Jewish person should possess.
In our next lesson we will discuss this question: Can students generate their own essential questions that can lead to enduring Jewish knowledge?