What do your students call you?
Are you an alumnus of Hillel Academy?
How long have you been teaching at Hillel Academy?
I am entering my fifth year of teaching at Hillel. Crazy, no?
What is the most rewarding thing about teaching your grade / subject?
Seeing the progress and successes my students have in their learning is truly the
most rewarding aspect of teaching.
What gadget do you rely on most when teaching?
Air conditioning. Is that considered a gadget? Otherwise I would have to say the SmartBoard.
What phrase do you find yourself using the most during your day?
"It's garbage time!" I think I might need to trademark that.
What three words best describe your class?
Riveting, spellbinding, inspiring.
I wish my classroom had...
A view of Jerusalem.
The most important thing I teach my students is:
How to haggle Israeli taxi drivers for a cheaper ride (confirmed by a former student of mine!).
But in all seriousness, the importance of being and behaving like a proud Jew in everything we do.
My students teach me...
The game Pinocchio. Apparently, the goal is to avoid having your foot stepped on by another player.
And I thought the hacky sack craze in the late 90's was weird. They also teach me Torah surprisingly.
Every year I am amazed by the new insights in Torah and thoughtful questions my students come up with.
By the time they leave my class, my students know how to:
Push my buttons. And hopefully read and translate pesukim in Chumash!
My favorite rainy day activity is:
What were you like when you were your students' age?
People might be surprised to know that I was actually an overweight, completely humorless nerd. Go figure.
What is your motto?
"Tein chiyuch ben adam, hakol letova!" (loosely translated as "Give a smile, everything is for the good!")
The most useful lesson I ever learned is:
Always stay positive and smiling, even when times are tough (from my 5th grade Rebbe, Rabbi Mordechai Green a"h).
The skill I would most like to have is:
General, around the house "fix-it-ability" is definitely a lagging skill of mine. Can't tell you how many conversations have started with "So I see you have a hard time figuring out how to fix things around your house. What's up with that?"
The most amazing / odd / inspiring place I have been is:
Amazing: Seeing the Queen of England at Windsor Castle, outside of London. Ask the 4th graders, they can tell you all about it!
Odd: Lodz, Poland. It was very unsettling.
Inspiring: The Kotel in Yerushalayim and Me'arat Hamachpeila in Chevron.
Do you play an instrument? If so, what?
As a kid I always wanted to play the violin. That's the closest I ever came. Wait, does a Shofar count?