Home Resources Machloket-i: A Personal, Professional Development Program
January 2023

Machloket-i: A Personal, Professional Development Program

Edward Magiste
Educator
The Temple Tifereth Israel
Designed as a professional development strategy, this pedagogy of Machloket targets veteran educators asking to develop their teaching and ideas

This pedagogy targets veteran educators who are already asking more of themselves and their teaching. Designed as a professional development strategy, it is to be completed within a group and is self-directed learning. Educators are empowered to work on a topic or project they want to improve. This strategy uses the Jewish pedagogy of Machloket, in which educators are positively challenged in the development of their ideas. The individual then works with their chevruta (partner) to refine it, and it is presented to a group, and a work plan is developed. The group meets periodically, the chavruta more routinely, to move the teacher along in their work. At the end, educators use a template that resembles a page of Talmud to present their ideas and learning.

Ed Magiste is a doctoral level instructor whose favorite group of students are 6th graders because they bring so much richness to classroom discussions. Ed has been a member of the teaching staff at The Temple Tifereth Israel in Beachwood, Ohio since August of 2004. He taught at B’nai Abraham for three years before that. Ed has participated in developing curriculum based on experiential and problem- based learning. He was the classroom teacher for the JECC’s All In curriculum demonstration year. He also developed several learning units for 4th, 5th, and 6th, graders on the Torah, the Holocaust, among other topics. In his classroom, learners are the driving force, guided by teen leadership (madrichim) which facilitated the learning process. This enables Ed to move around the classroom as a participant and benefactor of the students’ learning. He works with the madrichim at improving their inquiry and facilitation skills. He has also contributed to the professional development of faculty at the Temple by conducting a year long course focusing on the value of experiential education. He is in the process of developing another learning course for the teachers for this academic year. Ed lives with his 90-year-old mother and 28-year-old Autistic son on a small organic farm in northeast Ohio. In addition to his teaching at the Temple, he is also adjunct faculty at The Cleveland State University School of Social Work, and a volunteer with Footsteps, teaching English as a Second Language.
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