Teaching Jewish Texts

Winter 2016 Volume 3, Issue 4

Turn it and turn it, since everything is in it. And in it should you look, and grow old and be worn; and from it do not move, since there is no characteristic greater than it.” (Pirkei Avot 5:22)

At the core of our tradition sits a collection of sacred texts which inform and inspire Jewish action. Our texts contain insights into the history of the Jewish people and the world at large, and a code for living a meaningful life. Engaging in text study not only reveals these insights, but is also a practice that cultivates critical thinking, dialogue, teamwork, initiative, and reflection.

The art and science of text study is an area in which many scholars and practitioners affiliated with The Davidson School devote their time, attention, and passion. We are particularly excited to have launched an initiative creating the first ever compendium of standards and benchmarks for the teaching of rabbinic literature through our Jewish Day School Standards & Benchmarks Project. We are honored to steward this project in partnership with leadership teams from over 15 day schools, scholars, and leaders across academic institutions and agencies throughout North America and across all denominational lines. To sit with them is to truly feel the roots in the legacy of the Jewishbeit midrash!

We hope you enjoy the wide array of perspectives on the topic of Jewish text study contained in this edition of Gleanings.

Dr. Zachary Lasker
Director, Melton Research & Education Projects