Engage your students and educators in compelling, experiential programming to cultivate a culture of respect and appreciation of learning, physical, and developmental differences.
The Program: Teacher Fellowship Model
Day School educators will join together to form a cohort committed to building more inclusive communities in their schools. Together, they will participate in a series of trainings and receive individualized coaching as they develop foundational grounding in the philosophy of inclusion, common language, and practical strategies to implement educational programming in their schools that develops an inclusive mindset and appreciation of individual differences among all students. Participation in the fellowship will include access to the full library of Gateways’ peer disability education resources, listed below.
Program will kick off in the fall with an in-person summit and will continue with monthly zoom meetings on topics such as mental models of disability, ableism, and building common language, grounded in Jewish text and values. Additionally, Gateways will conduct site-visits at the schools to support participants in the implementation of the Shiluv curriculum and provide coaching and feedback. Fellowship will wrap up at the end of the school year with an in-person closing program.
As a result of participating in this fellowship program and associated peer disability programming, participating schools will be recognized as Shiluv-certified, exemplifying a commitment to teaching students to embody an inclusive mindset, grounded in Jewish values, that embraces and respects individual differences and disability.
Participating educators will also receive a certification that will enable them to implement the Shiluv program in their schools. Upon graduation, educators will be eligible to participate in biannual refresher courses to maintain their certification in the Shiluv program and continue implementing the curriculum in their schools.
Shiluv School Curriculum
By focusing on the overall culture and mindset of the community towards difference and disability, our approach seeks to shift understandings of what it truly means to embrace and include people with a variety of developmental and physical variations. Through a range of developmentally appropriate programming, students will:
- explore themes of disability and difference and cultivate a culture of respect and appreciation of learning, physical, and developmental differences.
- learn that our differences, strengths, and areas of challenge allow each of us to bring something different to the table, and together we form a strong community.
Students participate in developmentally appropriate, multisensory, and interactive activities exploring various themes related to embracing individual differences, respecting developmental variation, and understanding disability. Through these activities, students reflect on their own personal characteristics, develop an appreciation for the differences that exist within their community, and brainstorm ways to ensure that all individuals are supported and included. These can be facilitated by a Gateways consultant or participant in Teacher Fellowship Program.
Supplementary Classroom Activities
Gateways provides reading guides and Jewish text study guides to engage with the stories of people with lived experience of disability and make explicit connections with Jewish values, texts, and community.
Disability Speaker Series
Gateways coordinates and facilitates a series of presentations with speakers with different disabilities (e.g. Autism, intellectual disability, blindness and low vision, deafness and hard of hearing, physical disabilities, learning disabilities, etc.) who share about their lived experiences, experiences in school, with friends, and navigating their differences while forming a positive identity.
This programming is aimed at students in grades 3-5. Stay tuned for newly expanded programming for grades K-2 coming in 2024!