Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Shakespeare b'chavrusa

OK, before last week I don’t think I ever linked to an article before, and here is my third in a few days. No, I will not become a link aggregator for you or supplant your other news sources anytime soon : ) I happen to subscribe to a Shakespeare discussion list and one of the other members forwarded this article on the use of chavrusa study to approach English lit texts. I can't believe this has not been done before, and it certainly would make a nice approach in any yeshiva HS.
(Would it be such a bad thing if yeshivos fostered better pooling of resources among staff members so that an English teacher might become aware of the benefits of chavrusa learning and a Rebbe might benefit from becoming aware of some of the teaching methodologies used in a secular classes? I doubt things have changed that much from when I was in chinuch - Rebbes and secular teachers view themselves as different breeds rather than sharing the commonalities involved in the teaching endeavor. But that's another discussion...)


  1. It would definitely be fantastic.

    I think Yeshiva schools need to define their goals in terms of the secular. What I would personally like to see on the "secular" side would be:

    *Ability to comphrend and analyze different types of information and data.
    *Ability to communicate professionally and effective through both the written word and the spoken word.
    *Competency in math that translates into practical applications.

    One thing that is particularily difficult in Yeshiva high schools (boys and girls alike) is scheduling time to produce students with the necessary skills needed in todays world (comprehension, composition, oral communication, and practical mathematics).

    I see absolutely no reason why a Yeshiva school cannot have students produce composition pieces for Limudei Kodesh classes, e.g., that are edited and evaluated by an English Composition teacher and a Torah teacher in tandem for accuracy, grammatical skills, and effectiveness. Add a public speaking exercise onto that and you might even produce effective orators. (The lost art of homoletics, which, according to my elderly neighbor was a regular course in Batei Medrash post-war and today is a lost art).

    I can only see the benefits of both staffs working together. To me, the largest benefit to me would be granting respect to the limudei chol staff and creating environments where derech eretz is paramount.

  2. yehuda3:01 PM

    When I started college after many years of yeshiva I found that even for secular studies a shtender is the most conducive place to study.(A shaalo I had though was since the stender was bought and had been used exclusivly for limud hatorah does it perhaps have a din tasmisey mitzvoh that should not be used for seculer purposes)