Gil Perl

Gifts for God

Thoughts for Parashat Beha'alotekha

These are the thoughts I shared with our students this morning as the final installment in our weekly parsha series.

Afterward, several kids came up to me to tell me how moved they were. Others wanted to know where they could find the candy...

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June 05, 2015

Judaic Studies for Tomorrow

Over my last few years at the Margolin Hebrew Academy in Memphis and over the course of this year working with my admin team at Kohelet Yeshiva High School and the educational design team at Yeshiva Lab School, I've had the opportunity to think quite a bit about what we need to be doing in our Judaic Studies classrooms today to best . . .

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May 22, 2015

The Searing Silence

An Appreciation of Rav Aharon Lichtenstein, zt"l

The following is the opening of a tribute to Rav Lichtenstein that was published in the Philadelphia Jewish Exponent on April 28, 2015.

The Jewish world lost a giant last week. From humble beginnings as a refugee child in New York seeking asylum from Vichy France to last year’s induction into the pantheon of Israel Prize recipients, . . .

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May 01, 2015

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 12, 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 . . .

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December 19, 2014