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Gil Perl

Challenging the Paradigm

Reflections on visits to six San Diego area progressive schools

Last week was a whirlwind. I met Mrs. Becky Troodler, the incoming founding principal of Yeshiva Lab School at the San Diego airport and we immediately headed out to the first of six schools we'd be visiting over the next four days. Our goal was simple: get a good look at educational institutions that are challenging what has become the . . .

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March 04, 2015

A Speech to Remember

Tuesday was a busy morning for us here at the Kohelet Yeshiva High School. We were privileged to have both Rav Ari Waxman, Menahel of Yeshivat Sha'alvim, and the Bostoner Rebbe of Yerushalayim join us for davening, both of whom were slated to speak afterward to our students. Little did our students know that the most inspiring speech . . .

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February 11, 2015

Bruner on Educating for the Future

Like many educators thinking about 21st Century Learning and 21st Century Skills, the publication of Daniel Pink's A Whole New Mind back in 2006 played a critical role in opening my eyes and making the case for change. It was Pink who first caused me to think hard about whether our educational systems were preparing our kids for their . . .

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January 29, 2015

"For that, they expelled R' Yirmiyah from the Beit Midrash"

The Role of Legal Formalism in Jewish Law

"Rabbi, do you mean to tell me that God actually cares whether I say Shema at 9:22... or 9:23?!"

"Rabbi, do you really think it makes a difference to God whether I drink 5.2 fluid ounces of wine per cup at the seder... or 5.3?!"

These questions and others like them are common amongst adolescents and adults exploring . . .

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December 19, 2014

The Gift of Shabbos

The Challenges and Opportunities of Shabbos Observance in Contemporary Times

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December 05, 2014

Judaism and the West

The Legacy of Yaakov and Esav

וַיֹּאמֶר יְהֹוָה לָהּ שְׁנֵי גוֹיִם בְּבִטְנֵךְ וּשְׁנֵי לְאֻמִּים מִמֵּעַיִךְ יִפָּרֵדוּ וּלְאֹם מִלְאֹם יֶאֱמָץ וְרַב יַעֲבֹד צָעִיר
And the Lord said to her, "Two nations are in your womb, and two kingdoms will separate from your innards, and one kingdom will become mightier than the other kingdom, and the elder will serve the . . .

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November 20, 2014

The Shabbos After Project

A few years ago, my former student, Immanuel Shalev, described to me some of the more reflective moments he had as a founding member of YU's hit a cappella group, the Maccabeats. He told me about the way in which, at the height of their fame, his group would come to a community for Shabbat and people who hadn't stepped foot in a shul . . .

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October 27, 2014

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