Project Genesis

The Land of Israel


Israel Independence Day - Topics for Study

I was wondering how you would recommend teaching teenage Jews (grade 10) about Yom Ha’atzmaut (Israel Independence Day). I’m trying to put a class together to teach some students about this holiday. I wanted to focus on one aspect of the holiday as there is so much to cover and I am limited with time.

Hi. this was an interesting question and I gave it a lot of thought.

Several concepts:
1. You can talk about a pattern in Jewish history:
Freedom, assimilation, persecution, return to roots, etc. Look at Israel now and ask what makes it Jewish-just Jews living there? What if they act just like anyone else…get them to focus on what makes them Jewish..what makes them feel Jewish

2. Focus on the existence of a homeland after 2000 years of persecution. Is it a miracle? Is it just about politics? Has any other people survived this? See for some material on this theme.

3. Compare and contrast:
Egyptian holocaust, Jews die, a select few get out, we celebrate Passover, they establish Israel VS. Nazi holcaust, Jews die, select few get out, they establish Israel, we have Holocaust day. Why are our reactions so different?

Rabbi Mat

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