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Hazon Educational Library: Food & Climate

We Are The Weather Discussion Guide for Jewish Communities

A discussion guide to We Are the Weather, the latest book by bestselling author Jonathan Safran Foer. Hazon created this guide to be used by Jewish educators to explore how Judaism compels us to respond to the current climate crisis.

Young Adult Tu B’Shvat Seder

by Josh Kleymer
Mayerson JCC of Cincinnati
A Tu B'Svhat Seder is a fun experiential way to connect to a little known Jewish holiday, bringing to life ecological teachings, enjoying fruit from around the world, drinking good wine and of course fostering social connections. This year, with the help of the JCC Rabbi, the Mayerson JCC hosted their first Tu B'Svhat Seder for Young Adults.
Age(s):

Early Childhood Learns about composting!

by Josh Kleymer
Mayerson JCC of Cincinnati
Through a small discussion and watching a Curious George video, the children will learn about how everyone produces trash and ways to keep said trash out of the landfill. The children will learn about composting and how it will benefit their garden. Each child will then get a piece of trash to separate into a trash bin, recycling bin or composting bin. While they are separating trash into the compost bin they will be making their own composter out of a soda bottle to keep for their classroom and watch the compost turn to fertilizer. We will then gather together for a wrap up where they will see some broken down compost and hear what they will keep from their class to put in the composter outside.

Day of Awe-some: A Rosh Hashanah Family Program

by Darya Watnick
Edlavitch DC JCC
This program is an opportunity for families with young children to engage in the Jewish rituals and traditions surrounding the holiday of Rosh Hashanah. They will be able to meet families like themselves while spending the morning creating a meaningful and educational connection with a Jewish holiday.

Food Systems and Jewish Values

by Margot Sands and Elizabeth Dubinsky
Ekar Farm
In this program participants have the opportunity to think beyond their own garden and analyze two food systems at play in the world--local and global.Once students grasp these two simplified food systems that represent how our food is currently produced, they will explore which system aligns best with Jewish values.

Seed Stories

by Brenden Jackson
Amir / Shalom Farm Houston
This program uses storytelling as an introduction into the importance of seeds and the connections foods play to different people and cultures. Participants will have the opportunity to connect with a specific seed/plant and learn how plants and the foods created from them, can act as a living conduits for these stories. It is also an opportunity for participants to see the connection between their Judaism and a specific plant/food, or create their own new and important connection. Lastly, using seed stories as a framework within the garden offers the opportunity to create a sense of connection and continuity between multiple groups of campers.

Ba’al Taaschit Heros

by Rachel Binstock
Urban Adamah
In this lesson we explore waste as a concept, how nothing really ever goes away. We learn about the Jewish value of ba?al tashchit which helps us remember that being wasteful is a bad policy and has always been understood as such. And lastly, instead of dwelling on the problem of landfills or the environmental impact of using too much energy, we learn how to use two technologies that help us circumvent the often wasteful systems in which we live. We will play games that help us think about linear versus cyclical systems, we will explore cob, an alternative method for building our world with resources sourced in our own backyard, and we will build a compost pile and meet the Ba?al Tashchit Heroes that help divert tons of organic matter from the landfill. We are teaching in this lesson about closed loop systems and we are doing it in an embodied way.
Age(s):

Worms: An Exploration of Earthworms

by Sarah Rovin and Shani Mink
Pearlstone Center
This program is an introduction to earthworms and their necessary place in decomposition and soil health as well as looking deeper into cycles that renew the earth and where we see this in Jewish text.

Food Justice Shabbat Dinner

by Michael Fraade
Jewish Community of Louisville
This program brought members of the Jewish community together for a Shabbat dinner that highlighted local and ethically sourced ingredients while educating participants about issues of food justice in our city. The dinner included sharing stories, discussion questions, and conversations about ways to help promote equal food access. We partnered with a local food justice nonprofit to help facilitate the discussion and publicize upcoming partnerships between their organization and the JCC.
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The Three Sisters in Kehilla: The Power of Teamwork

by Anika Rice
Urban Adamah
This lesson makes a connection between how both plants and people live in community. On the farm, plants and other organisms are giving and receiving help from one another all of the time. This is reciprocity. Companion planting is the technique of sowing two crops together for a specific purpose, often pest control, space use or yield maximization. Native Americans have been planting the Three Sisters (corn, beans and squash) in one plot for generations. Not only does this trio help each other grow and use nutrients efficiently, but they have higher yields when planted together, and form a nutritious diet. People also need each other: to learn, to pray and to live a spiritual life. When we work in chevruta (learning partners) or are part of a minyan (prayer group), everyone involved can benefit from the group. We are individuals, but our communities are greater than the sum of their parts.

Peah Forward

by Rebecca Remis
Eden Village West
Learn about and enact the value of peah through harvesting a delicious summer treat and decide how much to donate. Share the remaining bounty with the camp community. Experience the joy in working hard and sharing the abundance (through recognition in the dining hall, working with a community organization, and leaving camp for a field trip)

Pickling and Food Justice

by Rachel Aronson
Hazon
This program provides an introduction to pickling and an overview of food justice issues. Participants will leave with a jar of pickles and knowledge of the pickling process, and with deeper insight into the importance of local food and workers' rights in the food system.

Wild and Wonderful Worms

by Brenden Jackson
Amir / Shalom Farm Houston
This program uses worms to explore how all of G-d's creatures work together to create a functioning garden/society/world. Participants will get the chance to explore the diverse ecosystem of healthy soil, specifically worms, and how it is because of this diversity that our garden can thrive. Students will also draw connections to their own differences between classmates, other community members, etc to see how all folks have a role to play creating a happy world. Using a simple prayer, participants will be able to connect how a praise to G-d for ?varied creatures? can apply to both humans and animals/insects.

Pickling and Fermentation Workshop for Families

by Nicole Cruz
Peninsula JCC
Explore new ways to preserve and eat seasonal food with your children in this easy and fun hands-on workshop. Learn about the history of pickling and its connections to Jewish traditions. In this workshop, we will create two different types of pickles- a 'quick' pickle using vinegar and a fermented pickle that you can take home to watch develop.
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Tu B’Shvat Seder

by Michael Fraade
Jewish Community of Louisville
This program celebrates the holiday of Tu B'Svhat and includes both traditional rituals and modern connections to environmentalism and eco-friendly Jewish practice. The seder takes place as a full multi-course dinner, incorporating the four traditional types of fruit into four courses. Between each set of courses is a relevant activity or discussion, including a keynote panel with representatives from local environmental nonprofits.
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