As I am on break from teaching Hebrew school, I am taking some time to reflect on the computer lab sessions I have taught so far this year. I find reflection often helps me improve my lessons in the future. What I find most interesting is the computer lab session I have enjoyed the most have not necessarily been the ones that the students have enjoyed the most.
The kids enjoy the sessions where they can play games. I do try to work in some time each week to allow the students to play Jewish related computer games, but it is far from the focus. The students also like it when they can color on the computer. I do not find this surprising for the little ones but older students too enjoy coloring. Again, I do try to work this in fairly frequently, but it too is far from my favorite type of lesson.
I enjoy the educational sessions. There was one class where the students, who were studying jewish culture around the world, had to come into the lab and using their own links, or some that I provided, find out about a culture they had not yet studied and answer some question about that culture on a worksheet I designed.
I also liked the plans where the students had to research famous Jews but they had to find at least three ways the person did something to show his/her Jewishness. If they could not, they had to find a different person. Another class where the students had to find Jewish hate sites was also fascinating.
I guess it is true that education is (or at least can be) wasted on the young.