Materials for Teens

What are our overall goals? We seek to bring young people inside, and hi-res… For a fuller explanation of this high-falutin’ code, take a look at this short video…

Material for teens

Dramas of the People and the Land

This curriculum attempts to tell, through the study of the biblical text, one of the central stories of our collective past and one which has helped shape our identity as a people. “Israel: Dramas of The People and the Land” traces the relationship between the People of Israel and the Land of Israel from the time the Land was first promised to our forefather Abraham until the time of our exile from it, a period of roughly 1,200 years.

The curriculum will try to explain the critical importance of the Land to the fulfillment of our goals as a People, the obstacles that stood in the way to our entry into the Land, the difficulties and challenges we faced as a People in our Land, and the ways in which we dealt with exile from the Land where we had developed and established our religious and national identities.

The curriculum consists of 9 Core Lessons which can be browsed below.

Makom is offering 2 Additional Lessons here, which were written by the same author which address the relationship between the Jewish People to their land in the post-First Temple period of Jewish history.


Old new songs

We often feel how the soul of Israel was conjured for us through its music. Who can imagine connecting to Israel without Yerushalayim Shel Zahav, for example? Yet  often we find ourselves torn. On the one hand, we know that Israel is no longer the land of clean emotional simplicity that those old songs conveyed. But at the same time we feel loath to present Israel only in the light of its difficulties and complexities, without any of its pure ‘soul’.

This program presents five songs that feature in the ‘canon’ of classic Israeli song, but that have been remade and adapted anew by contemporary Israeli artists in the last few years. It is the combination of the old beloved songs, with their modern interpretations, that will give us a fascinating window into the developing soul of Israel.

This unit

For each interpretation of each song we provide:

  1. Internet links for songs and information.
  2. Hebrew lyrics and translations
  3. Background information about the songs
  4. Suggestions for educational activities emerging from the songs

You may well find that the songs are enough to spark your imagination for educational activities. Without doubt the juxtapositions are so rich, one could take them in many different directions. Feel free to develop your own activities. For our part, we have added some broad guidelines for educational activities that leave enough room for you to make the appropriate adaptations for the populations you are working with. They are for you to use, or ignore! Please write to us with your own ideas and comments, and we can add them to the unit.


This unit includes background information about the songs, translations of the lyrics, and many youtube links! On youtube one can now find many short films, video clips, and Israeli songs with subtitled translations. Because of their immediacy and quality, we would highly recommend making use of these youtube videos. For this you will need a good LCD computer projector, and good sound system that plugs into your computer.

[We are told there are ways to save and play youtube videos offline. We suggest you consult with someone under 20 about the technicalities and legalities of doing so! Otherwise, you’ll also need a wide-band connection to the internet for these sessions.]

A note about the music

The unit is built around music. Clearly an important element of the songs is their lyrics. But an equally important element is the music itself. The vocals, the rhythms, the harmonies, the instruments. Make sure that you do not lose this aspect when you present the songs to your participants. (Imagine studying Van Gogh in black-and-white, or enjoying a ballet with your eyes shut.) This means that an important part of your preparations for this unit will involve prioritising equipment. The speakers of a computer or of an LCD are not enough to fill a room. Make sure you get hold of good speakers.

Of course when we say that lyrics are essential to the experience of a song, we need to take care of the translation, as well! Hearing a song while understanding the lyrics is a very different experience from listening to a foreign song and then looking at the translation on a piece of paper. The synchrony between words and music are what suggest for us the emotional meaning. Bearing this in mind, we have taken efforts to refer you to as many simultaneous translation films as possible. Make sure you get hold of a good high-lumens LCD projector (at least 2000 lumens), so that the picture is clear, and you won’t need to dim the lights.

Learn about individual songs. 

Nine Days of We

In this wonderful short interview, Avram Infeld lays out a vision for understanding Yom Ha’atzmaut as part of a process that begins on Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day, 9 days before Yom Ha’atzmaut. 

With this inspiring vision in mind, we offer a variety of programming that might be appropriate for this period in the Jewish calendar. 

The Jewish Community Story

The materials in this curriculum seek to help students understand the history and dynamics of the Jewish community, to help them appreciate the community that surrounds them, and to encourage them to see it as a positive entity that in their deepened understanding and heightened awareness, they might wish to join and in which they might want to play an active part.

The curriculum is made up of four units, which include a total of seventeen distinct lessons/chapters.

Click here to download the Introduction and Rationale for this curriculum.


UNIT ONE: Today’s Jewish world
UNIT TWO: The Historical Framework for understanding the Story.
UNIT THREE: The Dynamics of Jewish Community
UNIT FOUR: The Community Section

Introduction to Community Section



Israel Sites and Places

Here you will find basic background information on over 20 sites and cities in Israel you may wish to visit or learn about.

All In The Family



Camp Israel

The goal of “Camp Israel” is to provide a meaningful learning experience to strengthen the relationship between campers, counselors and Israel. To achieve this goal, we created an “Israel Emersion Camp” that would allow participants to experience Israel’s history chronologically, in a hands-on way, over the course of the session.

“Camp Israel” was created to offer a holistic Israel experience that combines all the fun elements of American camping with deep engagement with Jewish values, community building and the State of Israel.

 Camp Israel’s Program Includes:


Hebrew – Jerusalem Exam

What is the Jerusalem Examination?

The Jerusalem Examination is an advanced test of Hebrew and Jewish knowledge, designed specifically for the Diaspora. It is intended for graduates of Jewish High Schools and other students of Hebrew who want a recognized, official record of their achievements.
The Examination is in two parts:

  • The first part  tests the student’s knowledge of literary and Jewish sources from different  periods of the Hebrew language.
  • The second section tests the student’s knowledge of Hebrew through comprehension of an unseen passage, a short composition assignment and completion of grammar exercises.


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