Once again ATT adjusted its mirror, pivoted, and surpassed today’s many challenges to hold its usual annual in-person Teachers Conference Day (TCD) for 600+ teachers. With Rabbi Avrohom Shimon Moller and Mrs. Chani Friedman at the helm and a dedicated committee of school representatives, this year’s hybrid or virtual and in-person TCD exceeded everyone’s expectations.
With 32 sessions and 29 noted national and local presenters, there was something for every grade level, pre-nursery – high school. Sessions focused on a range of topics relevant to today’s educational environment.
This year’s program offered schools virtual session options as well as in-person sessions for those schools who preferred the in-person option. This allowed for presenter-participant engagement and both small group and large group discussion in a safe environment.
ATT’s Teachers Conference Day is an opportunity for teachers to access new ideas and methodologies in teaching, both in Jewish and general studies. Teachers are also able to collaborate with colleagues throughout the ATT system in workshops and teacher-facilitated discussions. While this program is just one of many professional development (PD) opportunities for educators that the ATT offers throughout the year, the sheer number of attendees and speakers makes it the most exciting.
Chicago is the only city in North America with a system-wide umbrella organization like the ATT for all the local Jewish day schools, which makes this PD Day an exciting program that is unique to our city.
Speakers and partners had this to say:
It was a true pleasure learning with the amazing educators of the Chicago area. Kol Hakavod on putting this successful program together. Looking forward to further collaboration in the future.
Rabbi Yaakov Sadigh, Head of School Katz Hillel Day School, Boca Raton, Florida
Thank you so much. The participants were very engaged and participated fully. You seem to have run a fabulous program! Thank you for making me a part of it.
Ashley Charnoff, Consortium of Jewish Day Schools presenter, New York
Thank you so much for the opportunity. From the quality of the questions, I can see that this was a really committed and professional group of teachers.
Dr. Tzipora Koslowitz, Licensed school and clinical psychologist, New Jersey
Thanks so much for the opportunity to speak this morning. I so enjoyed the ideas and interaction of the participants.
Beverley Johns, Learning and Behavior Consultant, Illinois
It was a pleasure being able to speak with you today at the ATT professional development day. I hope that the information presented was helpful for you and I look forward to working with many of you in the future.
Meir Hauser, Psy.D, Clinical Psychologist, Assistant Professor, Rush University Medical Center
Thanks again for inviting me to present. Based on the conversation during the workshop, the participants definitely took out new mindsets and skills to use with their students.
Marc Fein, Mental health advocate, New York
Thank you to the ATT and Mrs. Friedman for all their hard work putting together this wonderful education conference.
Daniel Alkhovsky, Director Walder Science
Participants had this to say:
Thank you for this and congrats on this great conference!
Rabbi Dr. Gavriel Brown, Assistant Dean, ICJA
I have heard VERY positive feedback on yesterday’s in-services. THANK YOU!!!!!
Rabbi Menachem Kirshner, Principal, Limudei Kodesh, Arie Crown Hebrew Day School
Today was great!! Thank you so much for putting it together.
Tobie Teller, Principal, Hanna Sacks Bais Yaakov
Thank you for the many great presentations today. Many teachers asked if they will be able to view the recordings of classes that they didn’t choose but heard were amazing?
Rana Wechsler,General Studies Principal, Joan Dachs Bais Yaakov
I know you spend a huge amount of time preparing for the yearly conference days. While I am not usually a big fan of Zoom classes, they did make it possible for classes of 70-80-90 participants. All three of my classes were excellent and well attended. Thank you for all your efforts.
Miriam Schiller, Walder Education
Thank you! Yesterday was wonderful. I truly appreciate your efforts.
Shelley Stopek, ICJA
Thank you so much for excellent sessions that were presented today by phenomenal speakers. Each one was tremendous!! I miss being together with all the teachers, but there were some nice benefits this way.
Sarah Leah Grinblatt, Arie Crown Hebrew Day School
I just wanted to let you know that the conferences I attended were informative and I enjoyed. All your coordination of in person and on zoom was tremendous. Kol hakavod!
Naama Goldstein, JDBY-YTT
I thoroughly enjoyed Beverley Johns presentation and will use much of what she taught. I especially like the dominoes game for teaching punctuation and the tic tac toe game for getting students to own their own essays. I also loved Ariela Robinson’s Art in Literature presentation. She gave me so many new ideas to use art to get students to loosen up and get into text and connect to it and feel proud of themselves—so many benefits! This was terrific! (It)was very valuable for me!
Marsha Arons, ICJA
Beyond excellent, enjoyable, worthwhile, etc. I could go on and on, but I don’t have my Thesaurus in front of me! Thank you, again, for allowing me to sign up for the Holocaust Resistance presentation. As much as I think I’m well-educated on the subject (I keep forcingmyself to learn more), there was some material which I hadn’t heard/read before
Ahuvah Klein, Arie Crown Hebrew Day School
Thank you so much for all of your hard work, attention to detail and creativity. I really enjoyed and learned from each of the sessions that I chose. I heard the same sentiments from many of my colleagues too. The ” treat” was well received. The remote choice that was offered was really appreciated and preferred. Thank you for all that you do.
Miriam Prero,Arie Crown Hebrew Day School
Yasher Koach to you! The three lectures that I attended with Rabbi Sadigh, Rabbi Kamin, and Dr. Hauser were all very useful and informative. Each one of them could have gone longer and no one would have minded! I hope everything went well today. I’m sure with all your planning it was a major success.
Margaret Matanky,Arie Crown Hebrew Day School
I really enjoyed the sessions I signed up for today. However, Dr. Nachi Felt’s presentation was over the top valuable and informative. To hear feedback from a frum person who himself is coping with ADHD and to hear the “sad” story of his challenging young life, to learn how he overcame his obstacles, how he grew up to be an advocate for something that affects so many of our children, and how we can help these children is beyond words.
Hedy Wechsler, JDBY
Workshops were on topics as diverse as the speakers and teachers themselves, including topics like:
Developing relationships with students
Student engagement and motivation
Developing critical thinking
Language processing and its effects on instruction and classroom behavior
The ATT’s annual Rabbi Dr. Leonard C. Mishkin Teachers Educational Conference brings together over 500 teachers to hear from locally and nationally renowned presenters every President’s Day Monday. The program is an opportunity for teachers to get a glimpse at new ideas and methodologies in teaching, both in Jewish and general studies. Teachers are also able to collaborate with colleagues from throughout the ATT system in workshops and round table discussions. This program is one of many professional development opportunities for educators that the ATT offers throughout the year.
The conference will take place on Monday, February 17, 2020 at the ATT in Skokie, from 8:45 am to 1:00 pm. The conference will feature many workshops for all ATT day school and high school teachers, from pre-nursery through 12th grade.
We’re excited to welcome some of the following outstanding educators this year:
Thomas R. Hoerr, PhD, University of Missouri – St. Louis, author, educational consultant at the Consortium of Jewish Day Schools, Emeritus Head of the New City School. He will speak on preparing students to succeed in life by developing their Formative Five Success Skills – empathy, self-control, integrity, embracing diversity and grit.
Rabbi Tzvi Mordechai Feldheim,Rosh Mesivta, Mesivta Kesser Torah, Baltimore, Md., will speak to rebbeim on a curriculum for teaching tefillah as well as and giving children the gift of joy in learning.
Rabbi Yehuda Fogel, MA,Educational Consultant, Consortium of Jewish Day Schools, Mental Health Professional, associate principal of Hebrew Academy of Long Beach Middle School, will address differentiated instruction in Judaic studies as well as data-driven instruction. He will focus on four areas: assessment, analysisactionand culture.
Jeanane M. Ferre, PhD, CCC-A, International presenter, CAPD, will discuss managing auditory processing disorders (APDs) in the classroom.
Miriam Gettinger, Principal, Hasten Hebrew Academy, Indianapolis, Ind. and educational consultant, will discuss parent stewardship.
Rabbi Dr. Jay Goldmintz, Faculty Ma’ayanot Yeshiva High School, Author of Ani Tefilla Koren Siddur, Winner of National Jewish Book Award, on religious development and prayer.
Debbie Selengut, Assistant Principal, Bnos Bracha, Passaic, NJ, on prerequisites that the teacher must have to connect with the students and to effectively teach them
Becky Udman, educational consultant, Dallas, Tx, Love and Logic parent/teacher facilitator on empowering students with confidence
Local experts will include:
Sherra Bloomenkranz, OTR/L on what data is useful when consulting with an occupational therapist and how you can be a good reporter/observer of student behaviors
Tzippy Kohen of Madraigos Midwest on providing teachers with a better understanding of how everyday student stressors and increasingly more frequent traumatic incidents impact both student and teacher.
Lisa Ehrlich-Menard, MEd, JCFS Response for Teens Youth Advocacy, Coordinator – Outreach and Community Education, on handling the “mean girl” phenomenon
Wendy Singer, director of education,Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center, will offer a lesson on Holocaust education.
Nathan A. Unterman, STEP UP National Ambassador, Emeritus Physics and Materials Science Teacher/Consultant, on how teachers can address the problem the lack of gender parity in STEM fields and specifically physics, using research based resources and lessons.
Sarah Burnstein, Service Operations, Walder Education& Debbie Steinberg, Librarian, Ida Crown Jewish Academy, on moving students into realms of expanded and higher-order thinking by incorporating classroom content into an escape room
Nina Henry, LCPC, CADC, Addiction specialist, JCFS Chicago, on identifying the signs and symptoms of mental health problems in young people, while acknowledging that adolescent development makes this process more challenging.
Rabbi Phil Karesh, Midwest Regional Director, Orthodox Union, on answering our teens’ questions that arise in class and in life and that relate to Judaism and their lives as teens.
Daniel Alkhovsky, Director DEEP – Developing Excellence in Educational Practice, on math games that foster real meaningful learning in the classroom
Sarah Oberlander, Arie Crown Hebrew Day School, on mindfulness in the classroom.
To view more information about professional development, click here.
The ATT has just concluded a very successful training cohort geared specifically to new rebbeim in Yeshivas Tiferes Tzvi, Arie Crown and Yeshiva Ohr Boruch. Nine teachers from these schools, who have all spent fewer than three years in the classroom, met for several sessions, totaling 16 hours, focusing on classroom management, building routines, parent communication, building trust and relationships with students, lesson planning and lifelong learning as an educator. The facilitators and presenters were veteran principals and educators from the ATT system and the local educational community.
The rebbeim were offered followup coaching to assist them in working on any of these areas of their choice. This kind of one-on-one coaching as a followup to formal training is proven to be an effective model of improving classroom outcomes.
Feedback from the participants in an anonymous survey following the course proved to be overwhelmingly positive:
“The fact that we sat together and heard real challenges from the classroom made me feel better and more supported.”
“Next year I would be interested in hearing more about different teaching modalities and more on modifying lessons.”
“I was attracted to attend these sessions because I want to be the best mechanech I can be, and I want to continue growing throughout my career.”
“I continue to look for new tools to add to my classroom.”
“I learned that trust must be built with parents and that I must choose my words carefully when criticzing or expressing teacher concerns.”
“There are so many components to proper lesson planning; mastery objective, activities, assessment, time management.”
“It is very helpful to have a protocol to teach routines. I learned about teaching the benefit of the routine, then modeling, reviewing, practicing, noticing the correct way and the incorrect way in the modeling and reviewing again!”
The new rebbeim cohort all left with a commitment and curiosity to continue growing in their careers through professional development.
The ATT proudly announces the winners of the Tenth Annual Hartman Family Foundation Educator of the Year Awards. They are Mrs. Sari Kravitt (Hillel Torah North Suburban Day School) whose top award is sponsored in memory of Mrs. Gayle Anne Herwitz, Mrs. Betty Hainsfurther (Arie Crown Hebrew Day School), and Miss Breindy Miller (Joan Dachs Bais Yaakov Elementary School).
Awards are selected by a committee of educational consultants and community members. Selection criteria for the Educator Award include exceptional instructional skills in a nurturing environment, commitment to one’s students’ success, superior communication skills with parents, students, and peers, commitment to continued professional development, and contributions to one’s school’s learning community.
The award and selection process are designed to highlight the superlative and innovative efforts of our educators. The ATT and Hartman Family Foundation hope that through the awarding of this prize not only three of the most outstanding teachers in Chicago are recognized, but the award also further elevates and ennobles the entire profession in the eyes of our community.
To view more about The Hartman Family Foundation Educator of the Year Award, click here.
To join us at the dinner, please submit your reservations: