Parents joined us as we read and discussed books Rebecca Walker’s Black, White & Jewish: Autobiography of a Shifting Self, a moving account of the complexity of growing up biracial in the US. This discussion was led by Martha Nadell, PhD (Senesh parent and Associate Professor of English, Brooklyn College, CUNY).
On July 15, 2020, the Senesh Parent Diversity Committee’s first monthly workshop focused on the origins of race and racism and the impact of slavery on housing, health care, schooling, and other areas. Participants discussed the concept of whiteness and how to discuss this with their children. For the first workshop, participants read or listened to 1619, the New York Times project about the slavery and its aftermath. Associate Professor of English, Brooklyn College, The City University of New York and Senesh Parent Martha Nadell facilitated the event.
On June 9, 2020, the Hannah Senesh Diversity Committee held a judgment-free conversation about recent events across the U.S. focusing on race and racism. There were opportunities to share educational resources for children and adults on this difficult topic. The discussion welcomed all points of view, honoring Hannah Senesh’s values of kindness, openness, responsibility, perseverance and Journey.
Parents were invited to check out our Jews Around the World Book List online and order books that interested them. This list included books about various Jewish communities that Senesh students were learning about in the classroom and that we are highlighting during Senesh holiday celebrations. Learn more about the books and order them here.
This was a special opportunity for parents to voyage to new and perhaps unfamiliar lands as they read and discussed books by a diverse group of writers. The first book was The Color of Water: A Black Man’s Tribute to His White Mother by James McBride. This memoir weaves together McBride’s autobiography, recollections of his mother, and a reconstruction of her life as an Orthodox Jewish woman in interracial relationships in the southern United States and Harlem in the first half of the 20th century. Parents discussed the book on a virtual call.
We honored Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with a special day of service with our partner Repair the World.
At our Hanukkah Community Art Festival, we had a special reading of multicultural children’s books and craft projects that reflect Hanukkah traditions from around the world.