Thursday, March 21, 2013

Ups and Downs

Since starting out on my own almost half a year ago, one of the most engaging projects that I've tried has been online teaching.

I hadn't been in a classroom for many years so the modern technical details of teaching were lost to me, but I was given an easy class of Hebrew School kids in Chicago and every few weeks we "meet," virtually, and discuss different aspects of Judaism and Israel.

Once I got over the fear of using some of the online tools, like the video-conferencing management system, I started to have a good time. The kids are bright and interested in everything and it's been fun to create lesson plans that will be interesting and will perk their curiosity about Jewish issues and concepts.

Before Tu B'shevat we discussed Jewish ecology and the Jewish commitment to the environment, and before Purim we talked about miracles.

I was so excited about my pre-Pesach lessons and the opportunity to connect the, unfortunately, often-dull Seder to exciting ideas like "what is freedom really all about?" and "how do we break free of the things that hold us back?"

We had 2 lessons planned for this month. The first was cancelled because the teacher's mother passed away and she was sitting shiva.

So last night I was really hyped up to wake up at 2:15a.m. (which is when I have to teach, so that it's 6:15p.m. for the kids) and stuff as much into the lesson plan as possible.

Unfortunately, I had forgotten that, while America is on Daylight Savings Time, Israel is not, so the class had gathered an hour before I arrived and was long-gone.  End of The Great Lesson Plan.

Of course, as usual, I couldn't fall asleep right away, so there went my night's sleep as well.

Are we grumpy today?

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