This school year, Weber took interdisciplinary learning to the next level by integrating the Spanish 2 curriculum with Jewish studies. Co-taught by Sra. Olivia Rocamora and visiting teacher Rabbi Pamela Gottfried, this new curriculum examines parallels between Spanish and Jewish culture using various, everyday themes such as clothing, food, and holidays.
In addition to traditional vocabulary and grammar study, each unit incorporates a lesson studying Hispanic culture followed by a lesson that focuses on Jewish text study on the same topic. The text studies investigate the complex significance of core Jewish values and traditions such as bar/bat mitzvahs, wearing kippot, Shabbat, death, and dinner culture. The first lesson focused on clothing in Peruvian/Quechuan and Jewish cultures and the stories head coverings and shawls tell about an individual’s values and societal limitations. Rabbi Gottfried said, “We are witnessing the students gaining insight into the similarities between how community values and individual identity are expressed through the clothing we wear.”
The goal of the curriculum is to go deeper into topics that we typically define loosely and take for granted. The students will examine more of the “what” and “why” both through the context of Hispanic culture as well as Jewish culture.
“This is a surprising, new way to look at ordinary topics and to draw parallels between cultures while tying together two very important programs at Weber- Spanish Immersion and Jewish Studies,” Sra. Rocamora shared. “It also demonstrates for the students how cultures that may seem very different are actually quite similar.”
The classes will visit places in and around Atlanta as part of the curriculum, to draw deeper insights and connections to the material.
“This innovative course curriculum serves as an inaugural component of Weber’s new Kultura por Lashon dual language and culture track, providing a unique opportunity for students to integrate their study of Hebrew, Spanish, and Jewish and world literature,” says Head of School Rabbi Ed Harwitz. “We are excited to see all that our students will learn and accomplish under the leadership of Weber’s distinguished and creative faculty as well as other educators who are engaged from the broader community.”
The Weber School, a Jewish Community high school serving students from all Jewish backgrounds, prepares students for success in college and in life with comprehensive academic and co-curricular programs that inspire student exploration, leadership, and Jewish social consciousness. Many of our programs and academies are unique to Weber and can't be found at any other Atlanta-area high schools.
The Felicia Penzell Weber Jewish Community High School admits students of any race, color, and national or ethnic origin.