Turtle Boy Curriculum

Posted by PCJE Alumni on June 8, 2020
Topics: 21st-Century Learning, Expand Your Mind, Positive Classroom Culture

The Pardes Center for Jewish Educators and alum/author Evan Wolkenstein are pleased to present our new and innovative Bar/Bat Mitzvah / middle school Judaics/Lit curriculum, based on Evan’s novel, Turtle Boy (Random House, 2020).

Each unit includes both a remote and in-person learning option. Lessons build on scenes from Turtle Boy to promote reflection, debate, and personal exploration. Activities are flexible, can be mix-and-matched, and contain text as well as arts/acting/role-playing.

Units feature strong, authentic Jewish content, focusing on these themes:

  • Apologizing and Forgiving
  • Accepting vs. Pushing
  • Innovation vs. Tradition
  • Joy, Sadness, and Emotional Resilience

Turtle Boy is the story of an isolated seventh-grade student and the trust and connection he develops with a boy he meets as part of the tikkun olam project for his bar mitzvah. Publishers Weekly called it: “A masterful mingling of deeply resonant themes, including self-esteem, loneliness, loss, and the rewards of improbable friendships.”

You can browse the curriculum on Padlet here.

Join the pilot/request more information by filling in this quick form.
Read the curriculum pilot FAQ here.

Purchase a copy of Turtle Boy here.

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