Teaching Zionist Identity through Multiple Perspectives

How do we teach the history of Zionism and the state of Israel in a way that contextualizes it deeply, teaches our students to think critically and introduces them to multiple points of view (as we would in any other arena of their history education) and yet helps shape their identity as committed Zionist Jews? How do we give our students an understanding of the realities, opportunities, and challenges of the contemporary state of Israel that go beyond the Israeli/Palestinian conflict? What aspects of Israeli life and culture are necessary for our students to understand which are often lost to that seemingly more-urgent conversation?  How do we form and foster a Zionist identity as a community of (mostly) Diaspora Jews?  Can we craft a new model of Zionist identity that acknowledges a rich Diaspora experience and envisions an exchange of resources and connections between communities both inside and outside Israel? Is it time to take a fresh look at ceremonies that commemorate important events on the Modern Jewish calendar such as Yom Haatzmaut or Yom Hazikaron?  How do we do honor to these ceremonies while making them inclusive and relevant for American high school students? The faculty fellows in the Machon Siach Israel Education Cohort have chosen to explore these issues and have produced papers, delivered Siach Talks (similar to a TED Talk), and updated curriculum for SAR students as a result of that research.

2015-2017 Israel Education Faculty Fellows

Click on each picture for more information

Israel Education Materials

The 2015-2017 Israel Education cohort has completed its two year research cycle culminating in individual research papers. Group members have also begun producing TED style talks about their research.  Click below to read the papers and watch recently produced Siach talks.


R. Tully Harcsztark

Israel, Diaspora, and Religious Zionist Education in America

Dr. Rivka Schwartz

     A (Post) Modern Israel          Education             

Dr. Tammy Jacobowitz

Revisiting the Yom Hazikaron Ceremony  

Ms. Adina Shoulson and Ms. Laura Shaw Frank

Israel Education at SAR: An Evaluation of the Teaching of Israeli History at a Modern Orthodox Day School