On Thursday 5th February 2015, PaJeS hosted the launch of an exciting new Ivrit programme for secondary schools. The Yesh Va’Yesh Wohl Hebrew Programme, developed by PaJeS and Matach/CET (Center for Educational Technology) in Israel, is being used in 13 Jewish secondary schools across the UK. The first textbook for Year 7 was available to view at the event. Once completed the curriculum will also cover years 8 and 9 and reach over 4,000 students per year.
There was an atmosphere of excitement and anticipation amongst the 60 people who attended the launch event, which featured an introduction from PaJeS Chairman Jonathan Goldstein and a presentation by Samantha Benson (Ivrit curriculum and training lead at PaJeS) and Dr. Naomi Gorbatt (Director of Language Arts at Matach/CET). A video showcasing the programme’s development was followed by speeches from Professor David Latchman, Chairman of the Maurice Wohl Foundation, Rabbi David Meyer, Executive Director of PaJeS, and Zehava Taub, educator and wife of His Excellency Daniel Taub, Israeli Ambassador to the UK.
Kate Goldberg, CEO of the Maurice Wohl Charitable Foundation, said:
I am thrilled that the response to the launch of the Yesh Va’Yesh Ivrit programme has been so positive, that the pupils are excited by it and the teachers feel it delivers beyond their hopes and requirements. Thank you to our funding partners, to those who had the vision of what Hebrew language learning in schools could look like, and to the team at PaJeS and Matach who are implementing the vision. We hope that teachers and pupils will use and enjoy the programme, and that our dream of having young Jewish adults who have come through Jewish education fluent in Ivrit at the end of their school career will be achieved.
Sarah Wagman, Head of Modern Foreign Languages and Ivrit teacher at JCoss said:
It's been great to have a new resource adapted to Hebrew learners in the UK which is comparable to all other language learning books...The topics relate to students and are strongly embedded in Israeli culture. The digital book makes it so much more interactive in the class and the wealth of resources on Moodle (the digital platform) is the perfect support for teachers. The students especially like the videos which are very authentic. They like the colourful layout and the very clear vocabulary section at the end of each chapter.