Adapted by Laura Bellows of the Teva Learning Alliance from Spirit in Nature: Teaching Judaism and Ecology on the Trail by Matt Biers-Ariel, Deborah Newbrun, and Michal Fox Smart (Behrman House, 2000).
Ages: 6 and up
Setting: Outdoors, in a colorful, biodiverse natural area
Zelig Golden explains B'naiture, an innovative, 2-year program leading to Bar or Bat Mitzvah. This groundbreaking program weaves Jewish teachings, story, and song with personal challenges, outdoor skills, non-parental mentorship, peer group community building, and nature awareness activities to provide an embodied way for youth to explore coming-of-age.
A Ready-Made Lesson to introduce the concept of the water cycle and watersheds in eco-systems, to learn the critical role of rain in the Land of Israel, and to learn Jewish values connected to rain and the water cycle.
by TorahTrek Guides, Dr. Samuel Wasserman-Singer and Rabbi James Greene with Rabbi Mike Comins
Dr. Rebecca Kneale Gould speaks about her remarkable class at Middlebury College, during which students spend an hour a week in the natural world as part of their studies.
Rabbi Marcia Prager speaks about teaching Blessings to Bar and Bat Mitzvah students. Rabbi Prager is a teacher, storyteller, artist and therapist living and working in the Mt. Airy community of Philadelphia. A graduate of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, she also holds the personal smicha (rabbinic ordination) of Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, the visionary leader of the Jewish Renewal Movement, with whom she has continued to work closely. She is the author of The Path of Blessing: Experiencing the Energy and Abundance of the Divine and co-director of the Davvenen Leadership Training Institute.
TorahTrek Guide Josh Lake shares "Meet-a-Tree," a game that builds community and fosters a love of nature, while introducing the tree as a symbol of Jewish law, tradition and thought.
Type of activity: Game
Source: Adapted from Joseph Cornell, Sharing Nature: Nature Awareness Activities for All Ages
Time: 10-20 minutes
When to play: Day
Welcome to the TorahTrek eJournal! Here you will find videos, interviews, articles, photos, and educational materials on the interconnections between Judaism, wilderness, spiritual practice and sustainability. Our goal is to support the spiritual/ethical lives of individuals, enliven and strengthen the Jewish community, and promote a sustainable society living in balance with the earth. Explore the eJournal by clicking on the topics below. Please share these resources with your friends!