Thursday, May 23, 2013

JETS Blogpost Eye on Israel -- JconnecT Open House

Participants study Eye on Israel at JconnecT Open House

As JETS and JconnecT gear up for the 2013/2014 school year, a series of virtual Open Houses are being offered throughout the summer to provide students, parents , educators and other community members with a chance to participate in a sample JconnecT class.

The JconnecT program offers online Jewish learning to students who don't have access to a Jewish school for afternoon and Sunday school studies or who have not integrated into a local framework.

Through JconnecT students enter a virtual classroom Live every Sunday morning to meet with other students from around the country and explore Jewish concepts and information as they "meet" who participate in the class with them online.

The 2013/2014 school year will feature two Sunday Morning Live classes -- Hip Hop Hebraics (Sundays at 10:00a.m. CST) and Contemporary Jewish Issues (Sundays at 11:00CST). Participating students are invited, as part of their registration, to join two dynamic, free Shabbatons which are held in conjunction with the Memphis Hebrew Academy. 
Memphis Shabbaton at the Memphis Hebrew Academy

On May 19th,over a dozen students from throughout the United States met, online, to experience an online JconnecT class, including Omaha, NE, Portland, ME, Birmingham, AL and Memphis, TN. JconnecT Instructor and Director Smadar Goldstein led the class from her Jerusalem office  and JconnecT Founder Rabbi Gil Perl joined in from the Margolin Hebrew Academy in Memphis, TN. 

Smadar began the class with an icebreaker designed to get the students to know one other in an educational and entertaining format. Then she the class moved into content, a look at the Eyes onIsrael,based on the Biblical text that "the eyes of God are always on Israel." [Dvarim11:12]

Using a variety of online tools, the students examined what this verse meant in ancient times and what it means to the modern State of Israel, Americans and Israelis. Students also discussed if 'eyes on Israel' refers to a G-d given right, or if Jewish people have to act a certain way in order to receive the privilege of having G-d's 'Eyes on Israel.'  he lesson then proceeded to ask the participants to explore how they see the verse relating to them,  in their own lives.

The lively, dynamic class presented opportunities for all participating students to ask questions, express their ideas and exchange views.

More Open Houses are scheduled throughout the summer. To sign up for a free Open House students, families and other individuals are invited to contact 

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