Parenting Program to Inspire Our Children

Close to 200 parents of school-age children joined the Associated Talmud Torahs on Motzaei Shabbos, December 14, 2019 to attend the Thirty-third Annual Rabbi Isaac Mayefsky Memorial Lecture. This annual parenting program featured the captivating speaker, educator and coach in New York and throughout the United States, Rabbi Levi Feldman.

The presentation, entitled “Inspiring Our Children in 2020,” focused on strategies for effective parenting. Rabbi Feldman addressed how to enhance relationships with children, how to teach values, make these values stick, increase cooperation, and inspire children to go the extra mile. He presented the following ideas that can help parents accomplish this:

Parents should remind themselves that each child is a gift and diamond to whom one must connect with mind and heart. This is a daily endeavor.

Using the acronym “CLAP” one can be reminded of these important constructs when relating to children:

a. CONNECT – seek to understand before being understood.
i.Children want our quality TIME.
ii.Face your children when you speak and listen to them – they need undivided attention with active listening.
iii. Dignity – they are Hashem’s children, be positive in your remarks to them even when admonishing them.
iv.Validate – our children don’t necessarily look for our solutions. They want to be validated whenever possible.

b. LEAD – with a blend of kindness/caring, accountability/responsibility.
i. Set clear and realistic expectations.
ii. In positive ways, let children know what options are currently available.
iii. Confident – find short positive words said with confidence.
iv.Remind them what they will gain from this.

i. Give them a taste of success.
ii. “Catch them doing good” – create the moment to celebrate, transform the moment.
iii. Praise – focus on the specific act, not the person. Don’t use generalities when praising.
iv. Celebrate whenever possible – “I noticed that you…”
v. Create an emotional bank account in which you make a minimal of five positive deposits to one negative withdrawal.

i. Show your pride in having a gift from Hashem – the Neshama of your child/children. Children will see and feel your pride and joy.
ii. Opportunity to connect with Hashem every moment should be part of your life.
iii. Children see our passion more than any lecture.
iv. Joy – if we do out commandments with joy, then your home will be a place where yiddishkeit is exciting – show your pride to be a Jew.

This lecture is part of the ATT’s expanded program designed to address the challenges of creative teaching and rewarding parenting. Over the years, it has become an excellent resource for parents of children of all ages. 

Rabbi Isaac Mayefsky was a gifted educator who, in the course of more than 40 years of communal service, developed many key programs within the Associated Talmud Torahs, including the Russian Transitional Program and the Oscar & Bernice Novick P’TACH Learning Disabled Program.

For more information, contact the Associated Talmud Torahs of Chicago at

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