December 11, 2012
Jews and Judaism are committed to the study of Torah, in its literal, textual focus as well as in a broad, inclusive sense. And yet, there is little systematic educational theory that has developed from our traditional sources, and even less that is based on Jewish concepts and values. Focusing on the dynamics of the learning process and teacher-student relationships as embedded in the notable Talmudic accounts of Rabbi Eliezer ben Hyrcanus, Susan Handelman contributes to this heuristic process in Make Yourself a Teacher. Through inquiry, enquiry, interpretation, and exploration, Handelman posits the roles, motivations, strategies, and values of the “master teacher” and “willing student”. What emerges is a generative foundation for thinking about a particularly Jewish theory of teaching and learning.