In preparation for the Gerda Vogel Marx Eighth Grade Israel Experience (March 11-28, 2018) Eighth Grade students devote several weeks doing classroom research and presenting reports in collaborative teams. Each student team studies a specific locale that will be on their eventual itinerary. Such places as Masada, the Red Sea, Ayalon Valley, the Tzin Desert, Tzfat, and several other historic locations are subjects of enthusiastic study by the students, who will not only become more knowledgeable in preparation for their big venture, but these students will become the "experts" in Israel as they partner with experienced guides and help to teach their fellow students.
The small team study approach is designed to engage students in their research, build class spirit leading up to the Israel trip, and enhance relevance in their Israel studies. This year and next year, Israel education is broadening well beyond the Eighth Grade year at Levine, as students throughout the school are getting more exposure to Israel education, even in the general studies classrooms. Two Levine teachers-Third Grade GS Teacher Anna Tasciotti and ECC 3's Teacher Nicole Emmett--travelled to Israel together as our Schultz Israel Educator's Fellows, and have learned about Israel education at the I-Center in Chicago. Our Israel Fellows have also been teaching their fellow teachers on how to bring Israel into the classroom in meaningful and exciting ways.