Monday, March 03, 2008

First fruits! An electronic siddur

This month, a group of eighth graders in Rabbinics 8-3 have made great progress on their electronic siddur projects. While some are getting the hang of working with Keynote and with Power Point, some are more proficient. In the past, I have done a project like this, but the grant from AVI CHAI has made it possible for our Director of Technology to spend time in the rabbinics classroom, guiding students in the proper use of the software. Several students are working in Keynote (Apple's presentation software), and if any Blog readers would like to see how an electronic siddur looks in Keynote, please let me know by sending me an e-mail. In the meantime, I am attaching the draft siddur created by Josh B. Josh needs another couple of sessions to work on transitions, citations and some content, but he is 85% towards completion.

Each siddur is required to include excerpts from three psalms (to echo Pesuqei d'Zimra); the blessings before and after the Shema along with the Shema itself; and three blessings from the Amidah. They also need to write a foreword or afterword in which they explain their approach to prayer and in which they explain the spirit of their siddur. In the foreword or afterword, they must include three quotations from Maimonides Hilkhot Tefillah 1:1, 1:2, or 1:3 and/or the passages from Mishnah Berachot that we studied in class.

Here is Josh's PowerPoint Siddur


Debbie Harris said...

Judd - I love the use of the photos and different fonts. I imagine that it must have been meaningful for the students to choose elements that represented the way they felt about the liturgy. I've been using Keynote quite a bit lately and I'm amazed at how much (for lack of better term) more elegant it is than PowerPoint. Kol ha kavod.

Marissa Rubin said...

Josh you did great. Although I doubt this is *theme music* "Josh the computer wizard"'s first time on the internet you must still feel good yours was chosen to represent the whole program. Mazel Tov Josh.

Hi Rabbi Lev!!!
PS. Even though this was hard it was a great project. It really helped my develop a personal connection to my prayer and made it feel less robotic.