Monday, November 12, 2012

Bucket Filling and Chesed

This fall, the teachers of the Children’s Center have been on a journey of learning in the course, “Teaching and Parenting Through a Jewish Lens.” Last week’s stop on our journey, allowed us to explore the concepts of chesed (love and kindness) and tzdaka (justice and charity).

Ronit, our teacher, eloquently connected our current curriculum of bucket filling to chesed. In the story, “Have you Filled a Bucket Today?” it is written, “All day long everyone in the whole wide world walks around carrying an invisible bucket.” Ronit explained that what we fill these buckets with is in fact, chesed. Together we explored many texts and interpretations regarding chesed. One interpretation that particularly rung true of bucket filling was, “The challenge of activism is to ignite the divine spark present in the human spirit (Rabbi Avi Weiss, Spiritual Activism.”

As a room of educators, we discussed this idea of doing chesed and igniting the divine spark in each child. In the Kohavim class, we are thinking a lot about how when you fill someone’s bucket your bucket is also filled. When you do chesed, it ignites this spark within you. The spark is in everybody, but it needs to be ignited. As educators, we are striving to understand each of your children and support them to ignite their own spark. As we left the wonderful day of teacher learning, many of us were inspired by the natural connection between bucket filling and Jewish values. We are eager to expand on our bucket filling curriculum by connecting it the chesed, as well as igniting the spark in each child.

-Jesse Feigenbaum, Children's Center Teacher

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