American Jewish History Curriculum and National Educators Institute

Organization: National Museum of American Jewish History, Philadelphia, PA

Grant Year: 2017

Project Director: Dr. Josh Perelman

Type of Grant: Signature

Grant Amount: $50,000.00 (1 year)


National Museum of American Jewish History – To support the creation of a curriculum for students and professional development opportunities for teachers in order to improve the teaching of American Jewish history in day and supplementary schools.

In 2016, the National Museum of American Jewish History (NMAJH) launched its National Educators Institute (NEI), a series of professional development opportunities designed to transform how American Jewish history is taught in Jewish day and supplementary school classrooms. NEI gives Jewish educators the tools for conducting inquiry-based learning (a form of active learning that poses questions rather than simply presenting established facts) so that they may expose their students to American Jewish history and provide hands-on, immersive learning experiences.

Through this grant, NMAJH will create, pilot, and refine the existing American Jewish History Curriculum into a comprehensive set of resources that, when combined with the training received through NEI, will equip teachers to employ American Jewish history to more significantly impact their students. 

The cornerstone of NEI is a four-day summer seminar held annually at NMAJH. The seminar is structured along two tracks: one for day school teachers and one for supplementary school educators. The two tracks convene as a cohort to hear major speakers and panel discussions. Each meets independently for customized sessions on implementing American Jewish content and object-based learning into their specific learning environments.