CAJE 33

The Conference on Alternatives in Jewish Education

2 days till CAJE 33

Posted by melbray on August 6, 2008

Wow. CAJE 33 is almost here and tomorrow some people attending our Shabbat preconference will arrive. I’ve been here 2 days already and the weather is wonderful, the view is spectacular and the people are welcoming. We are working hard to make sure this will be an amazing conference for each of you.

I look forward to meeting you all.

נסיעה טובה

מל Mel

Posted in Co-Chair, Mel Birger-Bray, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , | 2 Comments »

ברוכים הבאים (welcome)

Posted by hadarbb on August 5, 2008

. אוטוטו והכנס מתחיל

. מזג האוויר נפלא וכך גם מצב הרוח

. אני נמצאת כבר בוורמונט ומחכה לפגוש את כולכם, אז אל תשכחו לבוא ולומר שלום

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In Focus: From Mourning to Magic (CAJE 33 and Tisha B’Av)

Posted by Joel H. on July 30, 2008

We’re thrilled that Storahtelling is opening CAJE 33 for us. Storahtelling, which has won accolades across the world, has prepared an opening program called “From Mourning to Magic” to help us open CAJE 33 and transition from Tisha B’Av to the rest of the conference. Here’s what Storahtelling’s Amichai Lau-Lavie has to say about it:

Amicha Lau Lavie

Amicha Lau Lavie


CAJE 33 is opening on Tisha B’Av – a logistical necessity and challenge – but also a creative opportunity for honest dialogue and inspiring conversation about priorities and choices facing Jewish educators and leaders at the dawn of the 21st century. What is the legacy that this ancient fast day brings to modern Judaism? What is the role of mourning for the past as our communities struggle to craft Jewish experiences that will engage present and future generations? How much time, energy and resources should be allocated to remembering what was vs. creating what will become?

Storahtelling is honored to present the opening program at CAJE, and as our team of educators and artists began planning this event, these difficult questions became the focus of our intention. Central to Storahtelling’s work is the restoration of ancient stories for new generations, inspiring Judaic literacy, personal empowerment and societal change. With these goals in mind we went back to the classic Judaic sources that discuss Tisha B’Av and carried them into our current realities and personal struggles. We discovered that we are not the first ones to ask these questions – almost 1,800 years ago, and only a century after the destruction of the Second Temple, Rabbi Judah the President, leader of the Jewish People, tried to get Tisha B’Av off the calendar. His campaign failed, but ultimately sparked an important Talmudic conversation about the strategies needed for the preservation of national history and for the healing of national wounds. That conversation continues today.

We chose to reflect on the lesser known legends that link this ‘saddest day of the year’ to one of the most mysterious holy days on the ancient Hebrew calendar – the Fifteenth of Av – the full moon summer celebration of wine, love and hope. According to Midrash Rabbah, the seven nights that separate the fast from the fiesta represent a mythic and psychic transition, an annual, cyclical journey, both personal and collective – from grief to joy, and from despair to optimism and opportunity.

As we crafted this program, each of these seven nights became a candle of remembrance – a peek into specific tragedies that befell our people on Tisha B’Av. But also, each of the seven nights became a beacon of light – an invitation for courageous change in our thinking and a passionate plea for honoring the past but focusing on the present and bringing on the bright future we all yearn for.

We invite you to travel with us tonight, reflecting, remembering and learning together – from the ruins of the Jerusalem Temple, through the ports of Spain, the train tracks of Poland, the streets of Buenos Aires and the vineyards of Judea – to the hills of Vermont. May the ancient become new – and the new become sacred.

Amichai Lau-Lavie, July 2008


To see Judaic and contemporary sources Storahtelling used to create From Mourning to Magic, please click here.

Posted in CAJE 33 Information, In Focus | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Search All The CAJE 33 Sites

Posted by Joel H. on July 28, 2008

You may have noticed that there’s more that one “CAJE 33” site. There’s:


  • CAJE33.Org, which hosts the entire program (and it’s searchable!) and from which you can experiment with different schedules;
  • CAJE33.Wikispaces.Com, which hosts a wealth of information about CAJE 33, including the entire program book, lodging information, what to bring, and much more; and
  • CAJE33.Wordpress.Com, the blog, which you’re on now.

Now, thanks to Google, you can search all the CAJE 33 sites. Give it a shot. See what you find.

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In Focus: Six Violins, Three Celli, an Oboe, a Piano, and Doug

Posted by Joel H. on July 23, 2008

As you may know, Grammy-Award winner Doug Cotler is planning a gala final program for Wednesday night at CAJE 33. I don’t know exactly what he has in mind, but I just learned that he’s asked for two sets of three violinists each, three cellists, and an oboist. Add to that Doug’s master piano playing and our other terrific in-house musicians, and it’s going to be quite a night!

Posted in CAJE 33 Information, Chair, In Focus, Joel M. Hoffman | Tagged: , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Details on the Roundtable Fishbowl on the Future of Jewish Education

Posted by Joel H. on July 21, 2008

By Joel M. Hoffman

(See the full-size graphic.)

(Also take a look at some results from the Roundtable Fishbowl.)

“What does success look like?”

“How do we get there?”

These two huge questions will occupy seven leading Jewish thinkers and practitioners over the course of two days at our Roundtable Fishbowl. And in preparation, we want to hear from you! If you have questions you’d like addressed, or ideas you’d like to contribute, e-mail them to Fishbowl@Caje33.Org — then come to the fishbowl to see if we’ve included your suggestion in the discussion.

When

The Roundtable Fishbowl sessions will take place on Monday and Tuesday, August 11-12, from 2:15 to 5:00 in the Royall Tyler Theater.

What

The topic of the first day is “what does success look like?” Each synagogue has a certain number of children aged 5-17. What should we do them? Why? Is “seating the children behind desks for 2-5 hours a week” a good answer? What are our goals? How do we balance formal and information information? What is the role of curriculm? What about teachers?

The second day is devoted to “how do we get from here to there?” What should we keep of our current programs? What can we modify? What must we abandon? How will we staff our new programs? How will we fund it?

Our seven participants will dicuss their views on these all important topics, and you will even be able to join the conversation electronically via SMS and e-mail. (We’ll have wifi for your laptop, or you can use one of several computers we’ll have set up.) You can even get a head-start by sending e-mail now.

Who

Participating will be:

Dr. Joel M. Hoffman will moderate the event.

How

Get involved now! Send your comments, ideas, and questions to Fishbowl@Caje33.Org. You can also contribute during the fishbowl itself by sending e-mail to that same address. Use your own cell phone, Blackberry, PDA, or laptop computer; or use one of the stations we’ll have set up.

Don’t miss out

This is only going to happen once, and only at CAJE 33.

Posted in CAJE 33 Information, Chair, Joel M. Hoffman, Roundtable Fishbowl | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

In Focus: Art at CAJE 33

Posted by Joel H. on July 18, 2008

This is the first of a series of “in focus” posts, highlighting one aspect of CAJE 33 you might not otherwise know about until it’s too late.

From Laurie Bellet comes a description of the open art studio, during which anyone can learn what they need to know to bring art back to their schools:

Everyone’s Art Studio will be open and bustling throughout the conference! Find your way there early in the week so you do not miss out. Learn about artists of Jewish heritage, discover how you don’t need to be creative to offer the best in art learning, be inspired to craft educational room decor. Drop in to relax and play during “open studio” hours. Take advantage of this special time during your educational year when you can ask art and classroom gurus Laurie Bellet and Debi Mishael to solve your creative classroom quandaries!

The Art Studio will be located at Living and Learning B132. The space will operate as an open studio when no sessions are in progress. Participants who wish to ‘drop in’ to Laurie’s sessions, at a mid-point, are welcome to do so. Appointments to meet with with Debi and Laurie in the studio can be arranged with each of us.

Art is fun. Don’t miss the studio.

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Packing for CAJE 33

Posted by Joel H. on July 17, 2008

Coming to CAJE 33 and wondering what to bring? How do I register? Will there be Internet? What about laundry? Air conditioning? Dress code? Food?

We’ve just posted everything you need to know before you arrive, including:


  • Important Numbers at a Glance
  • Welcome to the University of Vermont and Burlington
  • Traveling to Burlington
  • Arrival and On-site Registration Information
  • Hotel Accommodations
  • University Accommodations: UVM Residence Hall Information
  • Internet Connection
  • Campus Services
  • CAJE 33 Conference Information (CAJE Page, CAJE Office, Emergency Numbers, Hospitality Desks, Job Board, Lost and Found, Meals, Name Tags, Prayer service Schedule)
  • What to Bring to CAJE 33
  • CAJE 33 Off Campus Trip Descriptions (pre-registration required)

If you have any questions, post them here as comments. If one of your fellow CAJE-goers doesn’t know the answer, we’ll chime in.

Posted in CAJE 33 Information, Chair, Joel M. Hoffman | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

The CAJE 33 Program Is On-Line!

Posted by Joel H. on July 14, 2008

It’s here!

The entire CAJE 33 program. The sessions. The presenters. The entertainment. Everything.

You can find it on the new CAJE 33 website. Take a look!

Posted in CAJE 33 Information, Chair, Joel M. Hoffman | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

CAJE 33 Is Almost Sold Out

Posted by Joel H. on July 14, 2008

The response to CAJE 33 has been so enthusiastic that we’re almost out of dorm rooms. If you haven’t signed up yet, or if you’re hoping a friend will join you, now’s the time. Go to CAJE.org to register. But don’t wait too long, because CAJE 33 housing is almost gone, and we cannot guarantee on-campus rooms after Sunday, July 20.

As in the past, we will continue to accept applications until the conference begins, and we hope we’ll have enough rooms for everyone, but this year, you might need to find a hotel if you don’t register soon. (Information about hotels is available from CAJE.org.)

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