Quality online Jewish education
Lookstein Virtual Jewish Academy is an online school for Jewish studies that supplements Jewish school programming. It brings quality online Jewish education to Jewish students everywhere, regardless of geographic location or ideological orientation, and to supports Jewish schools by providing affordable, innovative, differentiated instruction to supplement their existing course offerings.
Lookstein Virtual Jewish Academy creates and facilitates effective Jewish Studies online courses with a deep commitment to student academic success and positive student experiences.
In 2016, Lookstein Virtual Jewish Academy was recognized as one of the 50 most innovative projects in the American Jewish community by Slingshot.
Lookstein Virtual Jewish Academy is sponsored through grants from the AVI CHAI Foundation, the Kohelet Foundation, and the William Davidson Foundation with additional support from Joshua Venture Group and Targum Shlishi. LVJA is grateful for their ongoing support and encouragement.
Lookstein Virtual Jewish Academy opened its doors in September 2014. Currently offering more than twenty Jewish Studies courses, Lookstein Virtual Jewish Academy works with more than 50 Jewish day schools around the globe to expand and enrich their existing curriculum. To date, it has worked with close to 1000 students.
Latest blog posts
June 22, 2016
*While not mentioned explicitly in this article, the SAMR Model is commonly used to enable teachers to design, develop, and infuse technology into teaching.
By Chevi Rubin
We have been engaged in conversations with day school teachers, administrators, and funders about educational technology since the early 1990s. We have learned firsthand of schools’ hopes, excitement, and apprehensions with regard to EdTech.
Lately we have started to hear something different.
We are starting to hear tales of disappointment and frustration. Schools were too quick to implement new technologies, too-quick to abandon what was tried and true. It’s almost as if some are just realizing that “technology will never replace great teaching.”
The time has come to put our tech in check. Read More
March 15, 2016
Published in the Spring 2016 HaYidion
By Ilana Lipman, LVJA Director of Curriculum Development
It was about 30 seconds before the bell rang to signal the beginning of class when Matan approached me. “Mrs. Lipman?” I held my breath. Poor Matan. He was such a curious, thoughtful, hard-working student. I knew he had spent more time than any other student studying for the Shmuel Bet test. It seemed almost unfair to write that B- on the top of his exam, yet rubrics are rubrics and Matan had failed to satisfy the requirements that were demanded to attain an A or an A-. Matan knew that many of his peers had likely scored better grades than he, yet he still came to class full of enthusiasm. I mentally prepared myself for Matan to ask how he could improve his grade and how I could answer him without discouraging him.
But his comment surprised me. He did not ask me about his grade.
“Mrs. Lipman, you will never believe what I read over the weekend. Read More
March 8, 2016
Date: 2016-03-08 Hour: 12:49
Lookstein Virtual Jewish Academy, a project of Bar-Ilan University’s Lookstein Center for Jewish Education,
has been named one of North America’s top 50 innovative Jewish organizations in the eleventh annual Slingshot Guide, released this week.
“Lookstein Virtual Jewish Academy is honored and inspired to be selected for this year’s Slingshot Guide and recognized as one of the most innovative Jewish organizations in America today,” said Chana German, Director of Lookstein Virtual
Jewish Academy. “Our team has demonstrated that innovation, passion, and perseverance can be transformative in the Jewish educational landscape. We are thankful to Slingshot, and thrilled to be joining a growing network of organizations that are deeply committed to innovation and bettering the Jewish community.” Read More
March 7, 2016
There has been much discussion lately about blended learning and its potential promise for day schools. Chana German, who directs the Lookstein Center’s Virtual Jewish Academy and Russel Neiss, director of educational technology at G-dcast, a website that disseminates educational Torah materials, are at the forefront of this debate. Their extended conversation on the Lookjed website for educators is presented here in an edited and condensed format.
February 29, 2016
By Chevi Rubin
Bringing meaning to online Jewish learning
In our last post we argued that flashy uses of technology alone will not get students to learn material in a deep and meaningful way. This sentiment begs the question, what does? How can online Jewish studies elicit real thought, reflection, and excitement in students?
As Jewish day school educators we have all taught students who simply love learning. We have been the lucky teachers of classes that eagerly read the Torah portion, anticipate the commentators’ questions, and relish in the centuries old and ongoing conversations that ensue. But we also know and love the students who struggle to connect with the material and want so badly to find personal relevance in their learning. Read More