Out of the Box

Here's an interesting take on ADRABA

This comes from the Grassroots for Affordable Jewish Education website at https://gaje.ca/2023/07/21/educating-our-teenagers-from-out-of-the-box/

Educating our teenagers from out of the box

Since GAJE believes that Jewish education – in all its forms – is vital, we have informed readers of the progress of ADRABA, the innovative, creative, responsive, online Jewish school that provides a hands-on, for-credit, unique learning experience.

We are therefore again delighted to report that on October 16, ADRABA will begin its fourth year. By any measure, the school has been a success. It is being noticed by educators, parents and students in communities around the country.

One grateful student wrote of his experience: “I just wanted to thank you for such an amazing year. I truly had the most wonderful time being able to engage in things that interested me and am forever grateful for your engaging ways of teaching as well as your flexibility for submitting things in ways I felt I could express myself. In addition, your flexibility and willingness to accommodate my schedule will be forever remembered and appreciated.”

With increasingly supportive winds billowing strength and confidence into the young school’s sails, ADRABA continues to move forward. It advises that it will continue to serve communities outside the GTA, in Sudbury, Kingston and Ancaster while hoping to reach students in Thunder Bay. It will also continue to offer a course on Canadian history in person at the Paul Penna Downtown Jewish Day School in Toronto.

In its upcoming fourth year, ADRABA will bring back its former Grade 12, University level course, Philosophy, which will introduce students to classic thinkers in dialogue with Jewish counterparts: Aristotle with Maimonides and Locke alongside Mendelssohn. It will also introduce a new course in Media Studies that aims to provide teens with a deeper understanding of how legacy and new media and social media operate, as well as how to identify bias and misinformation – particularly when it comes to Israel-Palestine.

Sholom Eisenstat, one of the school’s co-founders, notes “ADRABA engages teens in adult-level learning that deals with sophisticated topics and challenging content – which normalizes Jewish learning as something that Jews just do.”

“ADRABA is working to create opportunities for Jewish teens across the province to acquire the building blocks [for living a Jewish life] – and more,” Eisenstat wrote last year. “Our online courses, for high school credit, are modelled on the Ontario high school curriculum and enhanced with quality Jewish content, interactive media, and challenging ideas. We add Jewish content infused with the best technological learning tools to deliver engaging and informative, live, interactive lessons and assignments. And we deliver it to teens from Cambridge to Kingston, and from Spadina Avenue to Sudbury.”

We hope and trust that ADRABA succeeds – by thinking out of the proverbial box – in reaching more and more students across the country.

To learn more about ADRABA, visit their website https://www.adraba.ca