I AM A JEW
The American Jewish pre-teen considers their Bar or Bat Mitzvah to be various things. For some it is the end of religious schooling. For others it is the task of learning a Torah portion. For many, it's plans for a big party. And while formal Jewish education may indeed conclude at the age of 13, a young person's understanding and appreciation of their roles as Modern Jews has only just begun to develop. As these perceptive 'tweens' approach the often-confusing stages of adolescence, their Judaism can continue to be an integral source of dignity and strength in their lives. The time for answering their questions about Judaism will soon be over. The opportunity to build an intellectual foundation of progressive Jewish pride is now.
The video I Am A Jew allows educators to re-present the history, mysteries, and moral purposes of Judaism for our modern world. It is an approach that speaks directly to the values of today's pre-teens, encouraging them to integrate Judaism into their social, emotional and intellectual development. This is a real opportunity for their parents and their community to make a major difference: Through this bold new presentation of Jewish values and ideals, we can teach our kids to be good people.
The goal of this film is not to teach students 'how to be a Jew', but rather how to think about and practice Judaism in a proud new way. Only then will they understand and appreciate what it means to say, "I Am A Jew."
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