We continue where we left off in episode seven with Kia, Katrina (hosts of the hilarious "I'm Just a Teacher" podcast) and Raven – three of a handful of educators who join TALMA through Hebrew Public, and enter TALMA as first time visitors to Israel, willingly throwing themselves into a world unknown for the sake of bettering themselves for the students they'll return to. These are their stories.
Most teachers join the TALMA Fellowship seeking the challenge of entering an unknown educational system because they know Israel, love Israel, and trust that – even on the days that lessons go awry – the setting is worth the challenge. Yet, for a small group of teachers joining TALMA each summer, the challenge is pursued because they don't know Israel – but want to. Why? Meet Kia, Katrina (hosts of the hilarious "I'm Just a Teacher" podcast) and Raven – three of a handful of educators who join TALMA through Hebrew Public: a network of charter schools across the United States that offers a public education with a dual-language Hebrew/English program that recognizes that, in order to understand a language, one must understand the culture. For the gen-ed teachers at the school who are surrounded by the language and culture of Israel, TALMA is an opportunity to better understand their school at home by taking on a challenge abroad – a summer with TALMA in Israel. Join us as we laugh, cry, and cringe through their stories of culture shock, amazement, and wonder as these three adventurous teachers recap their summer in Israel.
We spoke with some co-teachers, to get at the heart of what it’s like to put two heads together in one class.
Why does Talma exist? In this episode we spoke with the people who help to make Talma happen: foundation leaders, leaders of nonprofits, organizers and directors and leaders in education. These aren’t people who participate in Talma, or personally benefit from it and who so deeply believe in the mission of this program that they’re willing to devote their time, energy and, in some cases, finances, just so that other people–you, teachers from around the world, and thousands of children around the nation of Israel–can reap the benefit.
That’s why, when we ask the question “why does Talma exist”, these are the folks we need to ask. It exists because of them.
Listen to the 4th episode as we explore the differences that separate a day in the life of TALMA teachers in the Israeli classroom versus their classrooms ‘back home.’
The first day that TALMA teachers enter their classrooms in Israel often involves some combination of excitement, anxiety, and culture shock…feelings typical of anyone embarking on a new adventure. Things that should be familiar – recess, instructional time, teacher-student interactions – suddenly can feel foreign and overwhelming. Tried and true lessons that always worked in the past somehow don’t work quite the same way – and your jokes that always get a laugh… well, with the language barrier, the punch lines fall flat. The journey, then, is in the process of learning to adjust to the environment, to the students, and to the culture. Welcome, to a day in the life of a TALMA teacher…
Listen to the 3rd episode as we dive into the 'why' that motivates TALMA teachers to give up the freedom of their summer vacation for a challenging but rewarding summer of teaching and service in Israel.
Summer vacation is the time of year when parents realize just how underpaid teachers really are and teachers have a well-earned opportunity to step away from the classroom, reboot, recharge, and have some 'adult time.' Why then do hundreds of teachers each summer make the choice to give up their summer vacation and join The TALMA Fellowship for a challenging summer of service in low-income communities in the Israeli periphery? In this episode, we speak with nine teachers who explain their mission, their sacrifice, and why they are willing to volunteer their time and talents (for a job usually considered underpaid in the first place!) to provide educational opportunity to underserved children in Israel.
In this episode, you'll hear stories from TALMA teachers who lead change in their classrooms by day, then let the world change them as they explore and enjoy their surroundings and the local community by night! When you work hard, you get to play hard and earn the pleasure of your free time – and if there's any group that strikes this balance just right, it's the teachers of TALMA.
It is said that every educational system has two goals: the 1st is to prepare students for life in their own country and the 2nd to prepare them to compete in the global market. One education initiative successfully tackling these goals and attracting superstar teachers from around the world is TALMA, a summer or year-long teaching fellowship that brings professional educators to low-income communities across Israel as volunteer English teachers. These social justice driven educators collaborate with local Hebrew and Arabic speaking co-teachers to explore out-of-the-box ways to get the spectrum of Israel’s population – from orthodox and secular Jewish communities to Bedouin, Muslim, Druze and Christian Arabs – excited about learning English. With all their expenses covered – from flight, to food and accommodation, even social and professional programming – these teachers leave the burdens of bills behind and refocus their energy on bringing the innovative spirit of the Startup Nation to the fight against educational inequity. Listen to the 1st episode as TALMA’s adventurous teachers share the challenges, funny moments, and friendships forged along their journey– plus, learn about upcoming opportunities for teachers interested in bringing their talents to Israel through TALMA!