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What teachers have said about previous National Educators Institute:

“I liked the emphasis on object-based learning, and will use the concept of bringing in objects as a jumping-off point to foster discussion and enhance my lessons.”

“It was outstanding on all levels; best was making connections with museum staff and knowing that we can keep in touch and that the staff are going to guide us and help us create lessons through the year.”

“I love the use of primary sources. I think everyone agreed this was amazing. I’ve never done this before. We never think about analyzing sources like this.”

National Educators Institute

5th Annual National Educators Institute

Sunday, July 12 – Wednesday, July 15, 2020

We invite Jewish educators from communities across the United States to join us at this innovative professional development program designed to train day school and congregational school teachers (grades 5-12) in teaching American Jewish history by promoting historical thinking, empathy, and self-identification. The Institute provides a unique opportunity to engage with the Museum’s collections, learn from the experts in the fields of American Jewish history and education, and collaborate with Museum staff and fellow teachers sharing knowledge and best practices.

When: Sunday, July 12, to Wednesday, July 15, 2020
Where: National Museum of American Jewish History, 101 South Independence Mall East, Philadelphia, PA

Program Description:

  • Learn from leading scholars about new developments in Jewish history education
  • Network with and learn from colleagues facing similar challenges
  • Discover and gain access to curricula and teaching resources developed by NMAJH
  • Receive extensive training in object-based and partnership learning methods and ongoing support from NMAJH educators
  • Devise a plan for reforming the teaching of the American Jewish history in your schools

The institute will provide:

  • Most meals and lodging (single occupancy room maybe arranged at extra fee)
  • Access to the Museum galleries and resources

Participating educators and their schools are responsible for covering travel expenses to Philadelphia and some meals.

NEI photo

For more information, please contact

Support for NEI is provided by a grant from the Covenant Foundation and leadership gifts from Lasko Family Foundation and an anonymous national foundation. Additional support provided by the Solomon and Sylvia Bronstein Foundation, Michele and Jeffrey Brotman, Robin and Bradford Klatt, The Lucius N. Littauer Foundation, and Norma z”l and Abe z”l Shanzer.

Speakers and Facilitators:
The Institute is directed by Ronit Lusky (NMAJH), and leading scholars of Jewish history and education Dr. Benjamin M. Jacobs (G. Washington University) and Dr. Jonathan Krasner (Brandeis University). Past faculty has also included Dr. Lila Corwin Berman (Temple University), Dr. Robert Chazan (New York University), Dr. Reena Friedman (Reconstructionist Rabbinical College), Lightning Jay (University of Pennsylvania), Dr. Jenna Weissman Joselit (The George Washington University), Dr. Melissa R. Klapper (Rowan University), Dr. Pamela S. Nadell (American University), Dr. Kathy Peiss (University of Pennsylvania), Leslie Pugach (Jack M. Barrack Hebrew Academy), Dr. Abby Reisman (University of Pennsylvania), Dr. Jonathan Sarna (Brandeis University), Rabbi Lance J. Sussman, Ph.D. (Reform Congregation Keneseth Israel), Dr. Beth S. Wenger (University of Pennsylvania), and Dr. Minna Ziskind (Jack M. Barrack Hebrew Academy).

Suggested Readings:

Previously Participating Schools:

  • Adath Shalom Religious School (Morris Plains, NJ)
  • American Hebrew Academy (Greensboro, NC)
  • Berman Hebrew Academy (Rockville, MD)
  • Beth Israel - West Temple (Cleveland, OH)
  • Beth Tfiloh Dahan Community High School (Baltimore, MD)
  • B'nai Israel Religious School (Southbury, CT)
  • Bornblum Jewish Community School (Memphis, TN)
  • Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School (Rockville, MD)
  • Community Day School (Pittsburgh, PA)
  • Congregation Bonai Shalom Religious School (Boulder, CO)
  • Congregation Gesher L'Torah (Alpharetta, GA)
  • Congregation Ner Tamid (Henderson, NV)
  • David Posnack Jewish Day School (Davie, FL)
  • Denver Jewish Day School (Denver, CO)
  • Donna Klein Jewish Academy (Boca Raton, FL)
  • Ezra Academy (Woodbridge, CT)
  • Frisch School (Paramus, NJ)
  • Golda Och Academy US (W. Orange, NJ)
  • Hasten Hebrew Academy (Indianapolis, IN)
  • Hebrew Day School of Ann Arbor (Ann Arbor, MI)
  • Heilicher Minneapolis Jewish Day School (Minneapolis, MN)
  • Hillel Academy of Tampa (Tampa, FL)
  • Jewish Learning Center of Congregation Beth El (South Orange, NJ)
  • Kehillah Jewish High School (Palo Alto, CA)
  • Kellman Brown Academy (Voorhees, NJ)
  • Kesher Israel Congregation (West Chester, PA)
  • Kinneret Day School (Bronx, NY)
  • Krieger Schechter (Pikesville, MD)
  • The Lippman School (Akron, OH)
  • Manhattan High School for Girls (New York, NY)
  • Miles Jewish Day School (Birmingham, AL)
  • Moriah School (Englewood, NJ)
  • San Diego Jewish Academy (San Diego, CA)
  • Solomon Schechter of Chicago (Northbrook, IL)
  • Solomon Schechter of Long Island (Jericho, NY)
  • Solomon Schechter of Queens (Fresh Meadows, NY)
  • Temple Shalom of Newton (Newton, MA)
  • Temple Sharey Tefilo-Israel (South Orange, NJ)
  • Temple Sinai (Washington, DC)
  • Tuscon Hebrew Academy (Tuscon, AZ)
  • The Weber School (Atlanta, GA)
  • Weizmann Day School (Pasadena, CA)
  • Yavneh Day School (Los Gatos, CA)
  • Yeshiva University High School for Girls (St. Hollis, NY)
  • Yeshiva University of Los Angeles Boys High School (Los Angeles, CA)

Group shot

Participants in the 2016 National Educators Institute.