In preparation for the upcoming school year, Darchai Menachem staff participated in a week-long orientation and training. Rabbi Yossi Paltiel, Dr. Saul Kamelhar, Darchai Menachem Director and Principal Rabbi Eyal Bension, Mesivta Menahel Rabbi Dovid Marozov and Assistant Principal Rabbi Aharon Simon, discussed strategies and goals for educators to successfully fulfill their important shlichus of chinuch.
“We want to develop as a team and as individuals so that we can have the best impact on our students”, said Rabbi Menachem Vail, the school’s associate director. “Our goals for this in-service training include instilling in our teachers on how imperative their work is, focusing on the importance of being a dugma chaya with chassidishe warmth, and equipping our staff with the tools, skills, and the holistic perspective they need to address the unique circumstances of each student.”
To start off the orientation, lead teachers met to discuss goals and themes for the upcoming school year. Optimizing teacher collaboration, developing curricula, and establishing an ideal learning environment were some of the more substantive issues they discussed. Kitah vov Rebbi, Rabbi Sarue, provided one example of teacher collaboration. He shared his successful approach for teaching dikduk and gave tips on how to implement the system in other teachers’ classrooms. Brainstorming the best ways to inspire the students led to novel ideas such as a year-long “Middos Program” designed to engage students to develop their Middos in a meaningful way. Teachers also discussed how to increase the students’ feelings of hikashrus and excitement about Yiddishkeit. Teacher assistants focused primarily on effective techniques for communicating with students and developing positive relationships with them.
Dr. Kamelhar discussed the importance of using data analysis through documentation, and offered several of the latest, most effective methods. Using data allows teachers to gain an objective perspective and develop strategies to enhance learning and to assist each student with his unique challenges.
Wednesday started off with both lead and assistant teachers learning a Maamar together at the Ohel followed by each person writing a PA”N. The group then entered the Ohel together to daven for hatzlacha in the upcoming school year. Staff returned to Darchai Menachem to a heartfelt farbrengen led by seasoned educator and Mashpia R. Yossi Paltiel, who inspired all in attendance. “Knowing all of the latest data, techniques, and strategies for how to be good teachers is important, but ultimately, we as Chabad Chassidim know that Siyata D’Shmaya is the key. We want to make sure we are doing the best we can to live up to the Rebbe’s vision of Chinuch,” said Rabbi Bension.