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From: Russell Hendel <rhendel@mcs.drexel.edu> Date: Sun, 22 Aug 1999 23:00:52 -0400 (EDT) Subject: Yasher Coach to Ellen--Feasability of Teaching Torah her way In Mail Jewish v29n61 Ellen Krischer writes that >TORAH!!!! As opposed to what many schools are teaching now which is some >mish-mash of Torah, halacha and drash. Most kids in today's yeshivot have >no idea that the story of Avraham and the pit of fire isn't in the text. >They have no clue that most of what they learn about Noah just plain doesn't >appear. They have no clue that the text does not explain why Moshe is not >allowed to go into the land of Israel. And on and on. >I don't want my children to learn Bible stories. I want them to learn >Bible. Yes, I also want them to learn history, halacha, drash, etc, etc. >each in its time and in its context. Yasher Coach! All I want to add is that IT CAN BE DONE. I spent two years of my life teaching Chumash and Rashi to several 7-11 year olds I can personally testify that we learned the text and I encouraged them to do the type of analysis that leads to Rashi's commentaries. Although I have been told that "this is too sophisticated for high school students" nevertheless I actually witnessed 7 year olds come up with good, clean explanations of many Rashis. And these 7 year olds knew the difference between text and midrash. So IT CAN BE DONE. I have 400 pages of notes (if anyone wants to see them)--they form 100 sets of "question and answer" sheets for grade school children. Many of the methods I developed then can now be found on my Rashi website. I should also hasten that people who are interested can find many good books on the subject (Dr Leibowitz "Studies in Rashi", Dr Bonchek "What is bothering Rashi", Dr Zornberg "Genesis") Dr Hendel; Visit my Rashi website;http://www.shamash.org/rashi/