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For Teachers

The Jewish Museum is pleased to provide Pre-K – 12 educators with resources and support to enhance teaching and curriculum development. All programs support key points of the Common Core Learning Standards. Learn how to bring your class to the Museum

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Pre-K-12 Groups

Make the Jewish Museum your classroom through thematic gallery tours that build on curricula, contextualize artworks, and incorporate activities and inquiry-based discussion. The Museum also offers customizable group visits to classes whose students have special needs.

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Exhibition Visit

Veiled Meanings: Fashioning Jewish Dress, from the Collection of The Israel Museum, Jerusalem

Nov 3, 2017 - Mar 19, 2018
Grades: 3–12

Woman’s coat. Bukhara, Uzbekistan, late 19th century. Brocaded silk, ikat-dyed silk and cotton lining. The Israel Museum, Jerusalem, B64.12.4226. Photo © The Israel Museum, Jerusalem by Mauro Magliani

Examine how an individual’s surroundings affect choices in fashion and dress. How does clothing disclose information about gender, age, background, and customs? Students consider these questions while examining Jewish costumes from Afghanistan, Iraq, Uzbekistan, Greece, Morocco, Algeria, India, Egypt, and more, primarily from the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The variety of costumes on display attests to the diversity of Jewish communities around the globe.

Exhibition Visit

Modigliani Unmasked

Sep 15, 2017 - Feb 5, 2018
Grades: Pre-K–12

Amedeo Modigliani, Head of a Woman, 1910-11. National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC. Chester Dale Collection

Examine drawings, paintings, and sculptures by celebrated Italian artist Amedeo Modigliani (1884-1920), focusing on the period after 1906 when he first arrived in Paris. Approximately 150 pieces by Modigliani are complemented by work representative of the multicultural influences— African, Greek, Egyptian, and Khmer—that inspired the young artist during this lesser-known early period. Students compare and contrast works in different media and consider the ideas and emotions conveyed by powerful portraits.

Art: Materials and Process

The Art of the Book

Grades: 3-12

Prayer Hymn for Alexander I, Benjamin Nathansohn, Vilnius (Lithuania), 1818. Ink and paint on silk; brocade cover.

In this studio-based workshop, students examine parchments, reed pens, and the natural resources used to produce medieval books. Students view original manuscripts in the galleries, grind natural pigments such as saffron or malachite using a mortar and pestle, and illuminate their own works of art with gold leaf.

Art: Materials and Process

Multimedia and Process

Grades: 6-12

Matthew McCaslin, Being The Light, 2000

Compare disparate works in various media through the lens of artistic process. Tours may explore ancient to contemporary art, combining stops in both the collection and current exhibitions.

Art: Materials and Process

Materials in Art

Grades: Pre-K-5

Harriete Estel Berman, Alms Container, 1999

Students view art made from various types of materials — from wire to window frames — and consider the choices artists make. In the studio, students experiment with everyday materials to create their own works of art.

History and Global Studies

The Immigrant Experience

Grades: 3-12

Maurycy Minkowski, After the Pogrom, c. 1910

Why do people move from one country to another, and what do they bring with them or leave behind? Through examination and discussion of works of art and artifacts, students consider the personal and communal experience of immigration. 

History and Global Studies

Remembering the Holocaust

Grades: 6-12

Abshalom Jac Lahav, Anne Frank, 2007

Students discuss, interpret, and establish connections between the events of World War II and works of art and artifacts related to the Holocaust.

History and Global Studies

Number the Stars

Grades: 3-5

Michael David, Warsaw, 1980, Pigment and wax on Masonite. The Jewish Museum, New York

Elementary school students reading Lois Lowry’s Number the Stars focus on issues of resistance and hope through an exploration of age-appropriate works on view.

Ritual and Ceremony

Festivals of Light

Grades: Pre-K- 4

Rod Baer, Hanukkah Lamp Every December, 1995

Explore the role of light in the Hanukkah, Christmas, and Kwanzaa holidays and view the Museum’s spectacular collection of Hanukkah lamps. Groups may request to focus solely on Hanukkah.

Ritual and Ceremony

Ceremonial Objects

Grades: K-12

Reddish Studio: Naama Steinbock and Idan Friedman, Hanukkah Lamp Menorah, 2011

Examine ritual objects and related paintings, exploring how artists merge artistic style with function. Students learn about Jewish culture and ceremonies by considering how these objects are traditionally used.

Identity

People and Portraits

Grades: Pre-K-5

Reuven Rubin, Goldfish Vendor, 1928

Students compare and contrast works of art in different media that depict people and consider how artists use the gestures, facial expressions, and body language of their subjects to communicate ideas and emotions. Discussion will also focus on how artistic choices impact the viewer’s experience.

Identity

Art and Identity

Grades: 6-12

Raphael Soyer, Dancing Lesson, 1926.

Students consider personal, collective, and cultural identity through an examination of paintings, sculptures, or photographs. Tours may address issues of assimilation, stereotypes and discrimination, and heritage.

English Language Arts

Art as Text

Grades: 6-12

Marcel Janco, Ma'abarot in Gray, c. 1950

Students study original works of art as informational texts and reference artists’ statements, photographs, newspaper articles, and historical documents. 

English Language Arts

Objects Tell Stories

Grades: K-5

Wedding Sofa from North Germany, possibly Danzig (Gdansk, Poland)

Elementary school students “read” original art and artifacts as primary sources to learn more about the historical and artistic contexts of objects at the Jewish Museum.

Writing Through Art

Grades: 3-12

Ken Aptekar, I Hate The Name Kenneth, 1996

By analyzing works of art, students gain insight into how art can inspire creative writing and how writing can be a powerful means of engaging with the visual world. Tours may focus on poetry, narrative, and language development.

Archaeology and Ancient Civilizations

Ancient Civilizations

Grades: 7-12

Bottle, Eastern Mediterranean, 2nd-3rd century C.E. Glass: free-blown

The past comes alive through a close examination of original artifacts from ancient communities. Students consider pottery, mosaics, and glassware as evidence of societal change and daily life in ancient times.

Archaeology and Ancient Civilizations

Archaeological Dig

Grades: K-6

Horse Figurine, Israel, 1000-586 B.C.E.

Students make connections between past and present, discover artifacts from ancient cultures, and learn about excavations in the Museum’s hands-on, simulated archaeological dig. 

Art on the Road

A Jewish Museum educator will work with individual classes at your school, using artifact replicas, touchable materials, and visuals to engage students through discussion, observation, and interactive activities. A minimum of two lessons must be scheduled per Art on the Road visit to your school. Each lesson must be for an individual classroom and lasts for one period. Cost: $120/lesson.

Children’s Book Authors

Ezra Jack Keats, The Snowy Day /William Steig, Shrek/Maurice Sendak, Where the Wild Things Are/or Margret and H. A. Rey, Curious George

In this workshop, educators introduce students to the works of one or more author/illustrators featured in previous Jewish Museum exhibitions through storytelling and visual images.  Students create a work of art inspired by the illustrators’ books.
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Ezra Jack Keats, Crunch, crunch, crunch, his feet sank into the snow, final illustration for The Snowy Day, 1962. Ezra Jack Keats Papers, de Grummond Children’s Literature Collection, McCain Library and Archives, The University of Southern Mississippi © Ezra Jack Keats Foundation. Image courtesy of the Ezra Jack Keats Foundation.

Archaeology and the Ancient World

Students handle replicas of ancient clay, stone, and metal artifacts as well as archaeologists’ tools to explore the archaeological process and daily life within the context of ancient civilizations. 
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Horse Figurine, Israel, 1000-586 B.C.E. Clay: hand-formed, incised, and fired. The Jewish Museum, New York Gift of the Betty and Max Ratner Collection, 1981-223

The Art of the Book

In this hands-on workshop, students examine parchments, reed pens, and the natural resources used to create paint and produce medieval books. Using a mortar and pestle, students grind natural pigments such as saffron or cochineal to create paint which they use to design an illuminated letter.
BOOK THIS PROGRAM

 

Prayer Hymn for Alexander I, Benjamin Nathansohn, Vilnius (Lithuania), 1818. Ink and paint on silk; brocade cover.

Professional Development

Workshops for teachers provide content and practical strategies for engaging students with works of art. These professional development sessions are recommended for educators who work with elementary, middle, and high school students. We can also create customized professional development programs for a specific school or organization.

Special education teachers are invited to attend these workshops free of charge.

Educator Workshop Modigliani Unmasked

Thursday, December 7
4 – 7 PM

$16 (includes a light dinner). 

Special Education teachers and teachers in City Council District 7 represented by Council Member Mark Levine may attend free of charge by calling 212.423.3270.

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Professional development workshops are made possible with endowment support from the Kekst Family Fund. Additional support is provided through public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with City Council and Council Member Mark Levine.

Join us for a workshop exploring Modigliani’s early drawings, paintings, and sculptures. Senior Curator Mason Klein provides insight into Modigliani’s work from the period shortly after the artist arrived in Paris in 1906, when the city was still rolling with anti-Semitism after the tumult of the Dreyfus Affair and an influx of foreign émigrés. A tour of the exhibition, Modigliani Unmasked, with Museum educators will follow the talk.

Watch our new video to preview the exhibition.

Deadline to Register: Monday, December 4

Educator Workshop Veiled Meanings: Fashioning Jewish Dress

Thursday, January 25
4 – 7 PM

$16 (includes a light dinner). 

Special Education teachers and teachers in City Council District 7 represented by Council Member Mark Levine may attend free of charge by calling 212.423.3270.

Sign up for email updates on upcoming Educator Programs.

Professional development workshops are made possible with endowment support from the Kekst Family Fund. Additional support is provided through public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with City Council and Council Member Mark Levine.

Explore the story of how diverse global cultures have thrived, interacted, and inspired each other for centuries by looking at clothing from Jewish communities around the world. Includes a tour of the exhibition Veiled Meanings: Fashioning Jewish Dress, from the Collection of The Israel Museum, Jerusalem with Museum educators.

Deadline to Register: Friday, January 19

Specialized Workshops for Schools

Gallery and studio workshops can be created for educators from a specific school. These workshops introduce teachers to exhibitions and explore strategies for integrating art into classroom curricula. Themes include Archaeology and Ancient Civilizations, Identity, Objects as Primary Sources, Materials in Art and more.

Fees start at $360 for 3 hours with up to 20 teachers. Please call 212.423.3270 for more information.

See all upcoming events for educators here.

The Edgar M. Bronfman Center for Education’s school and family programs are supported by endowed funds established by the Bronfman Family, the Muriel and William Rand Fund, the William Randolph Hearst Foundation, the Helena Rubinstein Foundation, Rosalie Klein Adolf, the Kekst Family, and Mrs. Ida C. Schwartz in memory of Mr. Bernard S. Schwartz.

Generous support is provided by the Kekst Family, Capital One, J.E. and Z.B. Butler Foundation, Stavros Niarchos Foundation, Epstein Teicher Philanthropies, May and Samuel Rudin Family Foundation, Inc., Alice Lawrence Foundation, the Nissan Foundation, Rose M. Badgeley Residuary Charitable Trust, Con Edison, Moses L. Parshelsky Foundation, Deborah and Michael Rothman, Milton and Sally Avery Arts Foundation, Elias A. Cohen Foundation, Inc., Frederic R. Coudert Foundation, Kinder Morgan Foundation, and other donors.

Educational Programming is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, Cultural Affairs Committee Chair Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer, Council Member Mark Levine, Council Member Daniel R. Garodnick, Council Member Barry Grodenchik, Council Member Peter Koo, and the City Council.

Educator Resources

Discover the Jewish Museum’s resources for elementary through high school educators and download curriculum materials. Each resource explores themes related to works of art or objects, and includes suggested classroom activities, a glossary along with further resources, and links to the Museum’s online collection.

Curriculum guides are made possible by a generous grant from the Kekst Family.

Curious George Saves the Day: The Art of Margret and H.A. Rey

Margret and H.A. Rey’s children’s books about America’s beloved monkey Curious George hold a special place in the hearts of both children and adults around the world. This resource for educators is designed to complement and enhance a classroom study of the Reys’ Curious George stories.

The Radical Camera: New York’s Photo League, 1936 – 1951

The Photo League was a New York city–based organization of professional and amateur photographers founded in 1936; many of its members were young, first-generation, working-class Jewish Americans. Developed for the Jewish Museum exhibition The Radical Camera: New York’s Photo League, 1936-1951.

Narrative in Art

This resource was developed for elementary through high school educators to explore the formal elements of art and to draw connections among visual art, language arts, and literacy. Each of the works of art included here has a narrative component. Much like an author or poet tells or evokes a story through words, artists can use visual elements to weave together a story with all the familiar components: characters, setting, plot/scenes, mood, and tone.

Objects Tell Stories: Jewish Holidays

This resource presents ideas for exploring the Jewish holidays through art and artifacts by highlighting ten unique objects from the Jewish Museum’s extensive collection.

Immigration Experiences in Art

Art is an invaluable source for the study of history and for the exploration of immigration in particular. With art drawn from the Jewish Museum’s vast collection, this online educator resource features diverse works that relate to the topic of immigration.

Teaching the Holocaust through Works of Art

To understand the significance of works of art and artifacts, it is important to understand their political, historical, and social context. This resource can be used to supplement and enhance ongoing studies in history, art, and literacy.

Teaching with Marc Chagall

This guide focuses on three paintings by Marc Chagall (1887–1985) that were in the special exhibition Chagall: Love, War, and Exile (previously on view at the Jewish Museum, September 15, 2013 – February 2, 2014). These are juxtaposed with works in the Jewish Museum’s collection.

Ancient Civilizations and Archaeology

These materials can be used to supplement and enhance students’ ongoing studies in ancient civilizations and archaeology.

Common Core

Jewish Museum programs for school groups support the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and enhance classroom curricula by engaging students with primary sources – in the form of original artworks and artifacts – through close observation, discussion, and interpretation. Below are examples of the ways in which guided museum visits foster skills outlined by the CCSS; these skills are markers of students who are career and college ready.

Come to understand other perspectives and cultures
The Museum’s permanent collection comprises nearly 30,000 works of art from countries including India, Israel, China, Argentina, and Iran. Students discuss the convergence of cultures and make connections to their own lives through themes such as Cultural Exchange, Art and Identity, Festivals of Light, and The Immigrant Experience.

Demonstrate Independence
Jewish Museum educators use inquiry methods to create a forum in which students discuss their interpretations and share their opinions about works of art. Students learn to debate ideas and think critically.

Gallery exercises and studio art projects encourage students to use their imagination, be creative, and hone problem-solving skills.

Build strong content knowledge
By engaging students with art and artifacts spanning thousands of years, Museum visits build on classroom units of study with themes such as Archaeological Dig, Ancient Civilizations, Remembering the Holocaust, and The Immigrant Experience.

Jewish Museum educators consult with classroom teachers to establish connections to classroom curricula, goals, and vocabulary.

Respond to the varying demands of audience, task, purpose, and discipline
Students deconstruct how artists use color, line, and symbolic imagery to convey meaning and impact the viewer. They later consider similar artistic choices when creating their own works of art.

Comprehend as well as critique
Museum visits are organized around themes to facilitate access to complex concepts. Students use discussion, writing, and art-making activities to express their own ideas and to construct meaning.

Value evidence
Museum educators encourage students to make observations and develop hypotheses through examination of primary sources (original art and artifacts). Students cite visual evidence during inquiry-based discussions to support interpretations.

Movies that Matter: Film Screenings for Schools

Middle and high school students, along with their teachers, view award-winning documentaries that examine issues such as identity, culture, and tolerance. Each day of film screenings features post-film discussions and a pizza lunch.

Middle Schools: December 4
High Schools: December 5, 7 & 8

10 am – 1 pm
Free; includes pizza lunch

Students explore themes of identity, culture, and tolerance inspired by the Jewish Museum’s collection and screenings of award-winning documentary films. Engaging, guided conversations follow each screening.

Download the Winter 2017 brochure.

Read more about the Movies that Matter series.

To register, email teenprograms@thejm.org or call 212.423.3254. Limit: 40 tickets per school.
Movies That Matter is made possible through the generosity of the Nissan Foundation, the May and Samuel Rudin Family Foundation, Inc., the Moses L. Parshelsky Foundation, and Deborah and Michael Rothman. Additional support is provided through public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with City Council and Council Member Peter Koo.