How We Can Help
Welcome to SHEMESH
SHEMESH serves as a community-wide program providing the educational support necessary for Jewish children with learning differences to reach their full intellectual, academic, emotional and social potential in a Jewish setting. Services are offered in each school in accordance with the school’s educational and religious policies.
Three local day schools have signed on to participate in an innovative Hidden Sparks/Shemesh program to provide teachers with strategies for helping each child achieve learning and behavioral success.
Bais Yaakov School for Girls, Bnos Yisroel and Ohr Chadash Academy will participate in the award-winning program, designed to meet the diverse need of their students, during the 2012-2013 school year.
The Hidden Sparks model offers each school a tested, systemic approach and curriculum to teacher training. Together with a coach from Shemesh, who is trained by Hidden Sparks, Judaic and General studies teachers will meet regularly to review the learning profile of all students in the class, from the perspective of language, memory, attention, behavior and social abilities to maximize every student’s abilities.
“We have three primary goals for the Hidden Sparks professional development program: to help students who are struggling with a learning or behavioral challenge, to assist classroom teachers to better understand and teach to these students, and to help position the school for working with diverse learners in the future” explains Debbie Niderberg, Co-founder and Executive Director of Hidden Sparks.
Gila Haor, Professional Development Coordinator for SHEMESH, is a trained and certified coach. She will serve as the local facilitator and provide on-site professional development and ongoing support.
"Our collaboration with Hidden Sparks allows us to maximize our effectiveness by implementing this highly structured, systematic approach to supporting teachers. Given our current resources and staffing, we think this program is a perfect fit,” says Faye Friedman, Program Director of Shemesh.
Shemesh, which is a program of The Associated: Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore provides community-wide educational support to Jewish children with learning differences.
As part of the program, parents can also access Hidden Sparks’ informational webinars on such topics as “Help Your Child Get Organized” “Study Skills” and “Social Skills.” To sign up, log onto www.hiddensparks.org. For information on the joint Hidden Sparks/SHEMESH program, contact www.hiddensparks.org.