Pre-K – 12 Educators

The Jewish Museum is pleased to provide Pre-K – 12 educators with resources and support to enhance teaching and curriculum development. All programs support key points of the Common Core Learning Standards. Learn how to bring your class to the Museum

Download the current Programs Brochure

Professional Development

Workshops for teachers provide content and practical strategies for engaging students with works of art. These professional development sessions are recommended for educators who work with elementary, middle, and high school students. We can also create customized professional development programs for a specific school or organization.

Educator Workshop: Talking to Your Students about Abstract Art

Monday, October 20
4 – 7 PM

$15 (includes a light dinner)

How do educators make even the most enigmatic works of art accessible to a wide range of students? Randy Williams, Professor of Studio Art and Art Education, Manhattanville College, and an instructor at The Metropolitan Museum of Art, will lead the discussion and a hands-on art project. Participants also view the exhibition From the Margins: Lee Krasner and Norman Lewis, 1945 – 1952 with Jewish Museum educators.

Registration deadline: October 14

To register, please email schedulingcoordinator@thejm.org or call 212.423.3225.

Professional development workshops are made possible with endowment support from the Kekst Family Fund.

Educator Workshop: Immigration Stories: Past and Present

Tuesday, December 2
4 – 7 PM

$15 (includes a light dinner)

Join Jean-Michel Dissard, director of the acclaimed documentary I Learn America (2013), for a workshop examining personal narrative and immigration experiences. Clips from the film, which follows newly arrived immigrant teens at a Brooklyn high school, will complement tours of the exhibition Masterpieces and Curiosities: A Russian-American Quilt.  Discussion around the film and the show’s centerpiece — an elaborate, circa-1899 quilt bearing Eastern European and American imagery — will explore how art and media can tell stories of immigration, relocation, and assimilation. 

Registration deadline: November 25

To register, please email schedulingcoordinator@thejm.org or call 212.423.3225.

Professional development workshops are made possible with endowment support from the Kekst Family Fund.

Specialized Workshops for Schools

Gallery and studio workshops can be created for educators from a specific school. These workshops introduce teachers to exhibitions and explore strategies for integrating art into classroom curricula. Themes include Archaeology and Ancient Civilizations, Identity, Objects as Primary Sources, Materials in Art and more.

Fees start at $360 for 3 hours with up to 20 teachers. Please call 212.423.3270 for more information.

See all upcoming events for educators here.

Art on the Road

A Jewish Museum educator will work with individual classes at your school, using artifact replicas, touchable materials, and visuals to engage students through discussion, observation, and interactive activities. A minimum of two lessons must be scheduled per Art on the Road visit to your school. Each lesson must be for an individual classroom and lasts for one period. Cost: $120/lesson.

Archaeology and the Ancient World

Students have the opportunity to handle replicas of ancient clay and metal artifacts to explore the archaeological process and daily life within the context of ancient civilizations. 
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The Art of the Book

In this studio-based workshop, students examine parchments, reed pens, and the natural resources used to paint and produce medieval books. Students view original manuscripts in the galleries, grind natural pigments such as saffron or malachite using a mortar and pestle, and may illuminate their own artworks with gold leaf. 
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Common Core

Jewish Museum programs for school groups support the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and enhance classroom curricula by engaging students with primary sources – in the form of original artworks and artifacts – through close observation, discussion, and interpretation. Below are examples of the ways in which guided museum visits foster skills outlined by the CCSS; these skills are markers of students who are career and college ready.

Demonstrate Independence
Jewish Museum educators use inquiry methods to create a forum in which students discuss their interpretations and share their opinions about works of art. Students learn to debate ideas and think critically.

Gallery exercises and studio art projects encourage students to use their imagination, be creative, and hone problem-solving skills.

Build strong content knowledge
By engaging students with art and artifacts spanning thousands of years, Museum visits build on classroom units of study with themes such as Archaeological Dig, Ancient Civilizations, Remembering the Holocaust, and The Immigrant Experience.

Jewish Museum educators consult with classroom teachers to establish connections to classroom curricula, goals, and vocabulary.

Come to understand other perspectives and cultures
The Museum’s permanent collection comprises nearly 30,000 works of art from countries including India, Israel, China, Argentina, and Iran. Students discuss the convergence of cultures and make connections to their own lives through themes such as Cultural Exchange, Art and Identity, Festivals of Light, and The Immigrant Experience.

Respond to the varying demands of audience, task, purpose, and discipline
Students deconstruct how artists use color, line, and symbolic imagery to convey meaning and impact the viewer. They later consider similar artistic choices when creating their own works of art.

Comprehend as well as critique
Museum visits are organized around themes to facilitate access to complex concepts. Students use discussion, writing, and art-making activities to express their own ideas and to construct meaning.

Value evidence
Museum educators encourage students to make observations and develop hypotheses through examination of primary sources (original art and artifacts). Students cite visual evidence during inquiry-based discussions to support interpretations.

Movies that Matter: Film Screenings for Schools

Middle and high school students, along with their teachers, view award-winning documentaries that examine issues such as identity, culture, and tolerance. Each day of film screenings features post-film discussions and a pizza lunch.

Upcoming 2014 Program:

Middle School: December 4, from 10 am to 1 pm
High School: December 8, 11, and 12, from 10 am to 1 pm

For more information, please contact the Associate Manager of Teen Programs at teenprograms@thejm.org or 212.423.3254.

Resources for Teachers:
Behind The Lens Lesson Plan: Introducing Documentaries to Your Students 
The Blueprint for Teaching and Learning in The Moving Image
Core Principles of MLE 
The New York Times article Documentaries (in Name Only) of Every Stripe 

Movies That Matter is made possible through the generosity of the May and Samuel Rudin Family Foundation, Inc. and New York City Council Member Mark Levine.
Additional support is provided through public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs.

Film Still: Dancing in Jaffa, featured in the March 2014 Program

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Educator Resources

Discover the Jewish Museum’s resources for elementary through high school educators and download curriculum materials. Each resource explores themes related to works of art or objects, and includes suggested classroom activities, a glossary along with further resources, and links to the Museum’s online collection.

Curriculum guides are made possible by a generous grant from the Kekst Family.

The Radical Camera: New York’s Photo League, 1936 – 1951

The Photo League was a New York city–based organization of professional and amateur photographers founded in 1936; many of its members were young, first-generation, working-class Jewish Americans. Developed for the Jewish Museum exhibition The Radical Camera: New York’s Photo League, 1936-1951.

Narrative in Art

This resource was developed for elementary through high school educators to explore the formal elements of art and to draw connections among visual art, language arts, and literacy. Each of the works of art included here has a narrative component. Much like an author or poet tells or evokes a story through words, artists can use visual elements to weave together a story with all the familiar components: characters, setting, plot/scenes, mood, and tone.

Objects Tell Stories: Jewish Holidays

This resource presents ideas for exploring the Jewish holidays through art and artifacts by highlighting ten unique objects from the Jewish Museum’s extensive collection.

Immigration Experiences in Art

Art is an invaluable source for the study of history and for the exploration of immigration in particular. With art drawn from the Jewish Museum’s vast collection, this online educator resource features diverse works that relate in to the topic of immigration.

Teaching the Holocaust through Works of Art

To understand the significance of works of art and artifacts, it is important to understand their political, historical, and social context. This resource can be used to supplement and enhance ongoing studies in history, art, and literacy.

Teaching with Marc Chagall

This guide focuses on three paintings by Marc Chagall (1887–1985) that were in the special exhibition Chagall: Love, War, and Exile (previously on view at the Jewish Museum, September 15, 2013 – February 2, 2014). These are juxtaposed with works in the Jewish Museum’s collection.

Ancient Civilization and Archaeology

These materials can be used to supplement and enhance students’ ongoing studies in ancient civilization and archaeology.