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Topic: Teva

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Summer Feature – Teva Educators: Where Are They Now?

*As we begin approaching Teva’s 25th Anniversary, we will be spending the summer months featuring former Teva Educators who were once Teva students. They are from different Teva seasons and have different stories, experiences and memories. Enjoy the walk down memory lane with us!* Aliza Hertzmark came to Teva in 2000 as a student with Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School in Rockville, MD and came back to be a Teva educator in the Fall of 2009. Aliza currently works as a civil engineer in Baltimore, MD. What do you remember about Teva as a student? Which moments/memories/stories stand out? I remember singing the psolet song. After about two days of steadily declining psolet weight, the weight of the psolet bucket shot up on the third day. Someone on staff (either Teva or from our school) tried to say that the scale was broken. I also remember sitting by the pool pavilion as my kvutza (group) discussed what change each of us was going to do in order to earn our earth bead. What do you think Teva taught you as a young person? Teva inspired me to feel that one small act of change could make a difference. When you grew up […]

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Summer Feature – Teva Educators: Where Are They Now?

*As we begin approaching Teva’s 25th Anniversary, we will be spending the summer months featuring former Teva Educators who were once Teva students. They are from different Teva seasons and have different stories, experiences and memories. Enjoy the walk down memory lane with us!* Sabrina Shapiro came to Teva in 1998 as a student with Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School and came back to be a Teva educator in 2011. What do you remember about Teva as a student? Which moments/memories/stories stand out? The best part about Teva, for me, was that I was with all my school friends, learning, but in a place I’d much rather be, the forest.  I remember Salamander Tag, “fox walking” and singing and dancing really loudly in the cafeteria. What do you think Teva taught you as a young person? It wasn’t so much what I was taught, but just having a great time in nature was so valuable to me. When you grew up and thought about Teva, before you came back to be an educator, what sentence would you have used to describe it? The best time at school ever because we didn’t have to sit down and (be quiet) for […]

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Summer Feature – Teva Educators: “Where are they now?”

*As we begin approaching Teva’s 25th Anniversary, we will be spending the summer months featuring former Teva Educators who were once Teva students. They are from different Teva seasons and have different stories, experiences and memories. Enjoy the walk down memory lane with us!* Neshama Sonnenschein came to Teva as a student with Solomon Schechter School of Manhattan in the 4th grade. She returned as a Teva educator for the Fall 2017 and 2018 seasons and is currently the Teva Education Coordinator. Neshama, left, as the worm during Resource Revolution What do you remember about Teva as a student? Which moments/memories/stories stand out? I have a few memories that stand out to me from being a Teva Kid. The first is that I took a packet of butter one morning and realized that I didn’t like it, so I went to an educator and asked what to do with it. They patiently, and without judgement answered that the butter can be scraped off from the packaging and put into the psolet bucket and the packing could go in the trash. I remember thinking that my question and action had value, even if I was adding to our psolet for that meal. The […]

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June Feature – Teva Educators: “Where Are They Now?”

*As we begin approaching Teva’s 25th Anniversary, we will be spending the month of June featuring former Teva Educators who were once Teva students. They are from different Teva seasons and have different stories, experiences and memories. Enjoy the walk down memory lane with us!* Leah Simonson came to Teva as a student with SSDS of New London in the 6th grade. She returned as a Teva educator for the Fall 2018 season. Leah currently works as a healthcare assistant at Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts. What do you remember about Teva as a kid? Which moments/memories/stories stand out? I remember having so much fun at Teva as a kid. For years we knew we’d be going in 6th grade, so by the time it came I was beyond excited. I remember there was a talking garbage can that would talk grouchily at us if we threw something in it. I found that so funny and creative. I also remember singing, A LOT! I have a memory of waking up before the others in my cabin and walking to the lake. It was chilly, and there was a light mist on the lake. It felt magical. When I came back […]

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June Feature – Teva Students to Teva Educators: Where Are They Now?

As we begin approaching Teva’s 25th Anniversary, we will be spending the month of June featuring former Teva Educators who were once Teva students. They are from different Teva seasons and have different stories, experiences and memories. Enjoy the walk down memory lane with us! Chera Garlick came to Teva as a student with JCDS Boston first in the 5th grade in 2004 and then again on a Teva camping trip in 7th grade in 2007. She returned as a Teva educator for the Fall 2017 season. Chera currently works as an educator with Boston Ballet’s Education and Community Initiatives department and as special education teacher at Gateways: Access to Jewish Education. Chera in 7th grade when she returned to Teva for a camping trip What do you remember about Teva as a student participant? Which moments/memories/stories stand out? A moment that is most present in my heart was a moment of light and community. Having just begun my time at my Jewish day school, Teva was the first time I was somewhere where so many people around me were also Jewish. It was the 6th night of Hanukkah and we all gathered together to light the candles and sing songs. […]

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Spring Teva 2019 – that’s a wrap!

With Spring Teva 2019 coming to an end, we are so grateful for our students and Teva Educators. We were able to watch, grow, learn and explore with over 200 students that came from The Shefa School, Luria Academy, JCDS Boston’s Jewish Community Day School, Solomon Schechter School of Westchester, and Bi-Cultural Day School. Thanks to our amazing Teva Educators, students left at the end of each week with increased awareness about nature and ecology, excitement about Judaism and spirituality, connection to each other and the forest, and an eagerness to explore and learn more. Activities like fire and shelter-building, whittling, candle-making, singing, aquatic ecology explorations, animal agriculture lessons (including playing with baby goats and chickens), farming, sharing gratitude, Jewish learning and hiking are just some of the things Teva students have the opportunity to participate in and learn about while they are here. We can’t wait for the fall season! Stay tuned for more photo highlights.

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“I’m grateful to see the amazing world Hashem created!”

Last week, as our time with The Shefa School in Manhattan came to a close, we had the chance to collect highlights and share gratitude with the students and teachers. Some of the highlights included the campfire, the camp-wide game called Predator vs. Prey, the view from the famous Isabella Freedman Overlook, singing and dancing after meals, and exploring the forests; including finding salamanders and other living things in the ponds and streams near the trails. Thanks for coming, Shefa! See you next year 🙂 With the Teva season in full swing, we welcomed 18 more students this week from the Luria Academy of Brooklyn. Up on the overlook this week, the students shared gratitudes, and Hannah said: “I’m grateful for the opportunity to see this – to see the amazing world Hashem created.” On Tuesday evening, the students participated in Teva’s Resource Revolution Rally, where Gabby Garbage and Rethink danced and sang on stage, and taught about resources and the ways humans misuse and overuse them, and how we can rethink and do a better job of taking care of our world. The students loved singing this week, and the classic Teva song called ‘Psolet’ (waste) is sure to […]

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Spring Teva is Here!

  “I used to think nature was something I was outside of, but now I know it is something I am a part of!” – Sarah, 4th grade       Teva educators and staff members eagerly awaited the first school of the Spring Teva season yesterday morning, looking out over the lake at the Isabella Freedman Retreat Center in Connecticut, remarking on the budding trees and plants, the simultaneous stillness and steady movement of spring awakening before us. We shared gratitude for the land and prepared for the school bus to arrive. Shefa from Manhattan arrived early afternoon, with 31 kids excitedly exiting the bus to song. They were oriented and had time to move into their cabins before coming back for lunch. After lunch and a Teva Band introduction, they watched the Teva staff perform Bereishit (in the beginning), which tells the creation story and introduces the idea of humans and nature as being interconnected and demonstrates the need for us to have awareness and to take responsibility for our actions in order to create a healthier, more sustainable world. After the play, the kids were sent in their kvutzot (groups) with their educators into the forest, to […]

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One Water, All Lives: Teva Over Greenland

By Mike Tintner 2018 Teva Educator On the plane flying from Moscow to New York City, returning from Israel, I had the chance to bless. After standing up for the first time in hours on the long flight I stumbled to the window, where I saw a spectacular sight. For as far as my eyes could see was white. Below me were the glaciers of Greenland I have seen so many times on the news and in documentaries. I met someone wearing a black kippah journeying from Israel to New York for his sister’s wedding. We talked about the blessing of beauty, Maaseh Breshit, and proceeded to say the full Hebrew blessing. I told the Orthodox appearing man about my work teaching the connection between Judaism and nature to kids at Teva. As I said these words I wondered what he must think. First: There is such a program? Second: What qualifies you to teach this? The truth is I was the one judging myself. I usually am proud of my work and sometimes I struggle to explain it. In my 107 seasons on Earth, I have witnessed a lot. I have been part of the movement of water protectors […]

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