Shalom LinkED: Online Jewish Values Learning

June 10, 2022Lisa Langer, RJE and Rachel Margolis, RJE

What if your congregation’s students learn about Jewish values and living online with Shalom LinkED once a week for 18 weeks next year and celebrate, build relationships, and learn Hebrew together during the remaining weeks? How might your congregation’s educators focus and deepen their work if some planning and teaching is taken care of by leaders in the field?

Shalom LinkED proved invaluable to congregations who participated last year. A congregation educational leader from Congregation Emanu El in Houston, Texas shared that the online program was a “game changer” for their staff, while another added that the convenience of the program helped families feel seen by the larger congregation. An educational leader from Temple Beth Shalom in Austin, Texas expressed that Shalom LinkED allowed them to broaden their educational options without burdening the temple’s resources, and a leader from Temple Solel in Cardiff, California stated that the program enabled them to provide an “excellent” education to children who were unable to attend classes in person.

Shalom LinkED is an online learning option for 1st-6th grade students who are part of URJ congregations and are learning about Jewish values. A partnership between the URJ and ShalomLearning now in its second year, Shalom LinkED was created as a response to an expressed need from URJ congregational leaders for help creating multi-access experiences for students. Shalom LinkED  is also an option that you can offer families with students who might be unable to participate in education offerings in-person due to distance, schedules, health, or learning style. Smaller congregations could offer this as a core part of the education program for all age-eligible students. Shalom LinkED enables congregational leaders to increase multi-access programming without an extra heavy lift, enabling you to focus on relationships and celebrations with your students.

Shalom LinkED is for families who are already members of URJ congregations. In order to attend the 18 Shalom LinkED sessions between October and May, students must enroll with their local congregation. A student will choose one class time that remains consistent throughout the year, enabling teachers to build community online. Registration is open through September 16. After that, enrollment will be based on space availability. Congregational leaders can enroll students here. Classes begin on October 13 and 16, 2022.

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