August 2021

LeSha: Lemida Sh’Goreret Ahavah: Learning That Leads to Love

Learning that leads to love is a pedagogy that utilizes educational experiences to cultivate love between students in a Jewish classroom. A teaching approach that is rooted in LeSHA is founded on the belief that loving relationships between learners is a primary vehicle for deepening the acquisition of Torah. Similarly, this teaching approach posits that the act of acquisition of Torah was designed primarily to cultivate loving relationships between all members of Am Yisrael regardless of their backgrounds, practices, or beliefs. The purpose of this pedagogy is to see the classroom and Torah learning as a laboratory for Ahavat Yisrael outside of the classroom. This pedagogy seeks to decrease strife, hatred, and apathy and to increase love, empathy, and knowledge of the other within Am Yisrael. This work is timely, as educators are seeking tools, language, and frameworks to cultivate deeper understandings between diverse groups of Jewish individuals. The Jewish educational world is filled with wonderful tools that have been adopted from the secular world of diversity, equity, and inclusion. However, there is an approach within the Jewish tradition that sees the fulfillment of the mitzvah of Ahavat Yisrael as specifically focused on cultivating love between radically different types of Jews through the study of Torah.

Adam Eilath

Head of School
Ronald C. Wornick Jewish Day School Foster City, CA

Jewish Pedagogies Circle

Adam Eilath is the Head of School at Ronald C Wornick Jewish Day School in Foster City. Adam previously worked at the Jewish Community High School of the Bay in San Francisco and also held positions at Kehillah Jewish High School, the Nesiya Institute and MiMizrach Shemesh. He holds an MA in Jewish Thought from Tel Aviv University, a BA in Jewish Studies from McGill University and has certificates from the Shalom Hartman Institute, the Jewish Theological Seminary and Yeshiva University. Adam is a leader in the American Sephardic Community and is involved in a number of initiatives that aim to build capacity and awareness of Sephardic and Mizrahi Jewry. He lives in Oakland with his wife and two daughters and is an accomplished open water swimmer in the San Francisco Bay Area.