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  • Have You Asked Yourself These 8 Chanukah Questions Yet?

    Debra Shaffer Seeman

    What would it look like if Jewish educators had deeply personal Chanukah conversations over the next eight days?  Eight prompts based on some of our tradition’s powerful Chanukah lessons can be found below. This blog is written for school-based educators. Not based in a school? No worries. Just switch out the word “school” for your […]

  • The Gasp

    Elliott Rabin

    Several years ago, we published an article in HaYidion entitled “Hating God in Front of the Whole School.” In it, Rabbi Jeremy Winaker, head of school at Albert Einstein Academy in Wilmington, DE, discussed a fraught incident that took place: In the middle of all-school tefillah at Albert Einstein Academy in Wilmington, Delaware, one third grader announced […]

  • It's Not About Expertise

    Shira Heller

    I’m glad to be able to say that I’m reasonably intelligent and fairly well read. I take my work seriously, and try to keep up with what the world is learning about education, child development, and mental health. But I’m not a scholar. Or an expert. I believe I have the capacity to be an […]

  • Innovation Is... An Interview with Michael Hyde

    Andrea Hernandez

    Introducing: Innovation Is… a new blog series whose mission is to shine the spotlight on the inspiring, innovative work happening at Jewish day schools. An enormous “thank you” to Michael Hyde, for being our first featured innovator. Michael is the STEAM and Maker Integrator at Portland Jewish Academy, where he works with teachers and students […]

  • Communication is Key!

    Amy Wasser

    Rabbi Jonathan Sacks discusses just what has been on my mind in the chapter Toledot: The Price of Silence in  Lessons in Leadership.  He states,  “Life is relationship. And human relationships only exist because we can speak. That is why any leader, from a parent to CEO-must set as his or her task good, strong, […]

  • JDS Stories // Fearless Inclusion at Carmel Academy, Greenwich, CT


    In the spirit of the 2017 Ruderman Inclusion Summit in Boston November 19-20, Prizmah interviewed the leaders of Carmel Academy’s innovative PALS (Providing Alternative Learning Strategies) inclusion program: Nora Anderson (Head of Schools) and Jonathan Holub (Director of Educational Resources/PALS Program). What is unique about Carmel’s inclusion program? Nora: When our PALS program started ten […]

  • From Our CEO- Wanted: Bold Ideas

    Paul Bernstein

    During Prizmah’s second year, we are embarking on an important, ambitious project to figure out how Prizmah can best serve our vital Jewish day schools for years to come.  To do this, Prizmah’s board is engaged in a long-term strategic planning process.  We know that we need new ideas for Prizmah and day schools to […]

  • C is for Culturally Immersive

    Yael Steiner

    Last Friday while cooking for Shabbat, I listened to a podcast episode called A is for Afrocentric, which followed the deliberations of Eric (the podcast host)  and his wife, Carla, figuring out where to send their daughter to nursery school.  Carla was interested in an Afrocentric school, which integrates African culture and history into all […]

  • 5 Ways Mindfulness Can Lead To More Successful Development

    Helen London

        At a recent training on Donor Stewardship, a very hard-working JDS development professional was frustrated.  “I send Purim packages each year to our big donors, but  I never hear if they enjoyed our gift to them. We continue to do this every year, but we get no feedback!” This comment made me think […]

  • Memory and Memorization

    Elliott Rabin

    A recent report on NPR compared the results of two methods to try to increase memory. Both methods, ironically, were based on games using computer technology, which is surely responsible for a decrease in memory. While the researchers found that one was significantly more effective than the other, neither method of memory boosting showed any demonstrable impact […]

  • Ask the Expert: New Staff

    Amy Wasser

    Q: Even as the new school year is well underway, how can we make sure that new staff members feel fully integrated into our community?  A: Integrating new staff and faculty to Jewish day schools is almost akin to welcoming a new member of the family. It is not too late to smooth out the transition […]

  • From the CEO: Routine

    Paul Bernstein

    As we settle back into routine after the holiday season, Prizmah is gathering together leaders of the day school field for a major convening. We are hosting Leaders to Leaders and the fall gatherings of Prizmah’s leadership training programs, the Head of School Excellence Program (HOSPEP) for new heads, and YOU Lead for current and […]

  • The Human Body as Inspiration for Working in Sync

    Elana Alfred

    Considering I never went to medical school, or even remotely close to that, I know far more about the human body and how our systems cross-function than I ever thought I would know, or even want to know. My husband has cystic fibrosis, so over the past decade of knowing him, I have learned a […]

  • This I Believe About School Innovation

    Andrea Hernandez

    I have struggled for a long while with the term “innovation” as relates to schools. I feel that the term itself is fraught with potential for misunderstanding and talking at cross purposes. Instead of continuing to avoid using the term innovation, I’ve decided to embrace it by using this blog to thoroughly explore school innovation. […]

  • Coping with Boredom in Synagogue

    Elliott Rabin

    Yom Kippur I have come to find an increasingly uplifting experience. The melodies and singing in my synagogue lift me like eagle’s wings. I look forward each year to exploring the piyyutim and various sections of the liturgy in greater depth; and for those moments when I may feel less inspired, I bring a book […]