The Giving of the Torah


When the Torah was given with thunder, lightning, fire, and smoke, how did it make the Israelites feel? How does the story of the giving of the Torah enrich our relationship with the Torah? In this resource learners will analyze a portrait depicting the scene, study the Biblical passage from the book of Shmot that focuses on the sensory experience of Matan Torah. They will discuss the ways in which this contributed to the event at Har Sinai as well as the significance of this national collective memory to their own lives. Students will be able to immerse themselves in the drama of this  encounter with God by writing a “first hand account” from a character of their choosing who was there for that momentous occasion.

The learner will:

  1. Understand  how the collective memory of Matan Torah strengthens one’s national identity

  2. know how the Biblical text depicts the event of receiving the Torah at Har Sinai

  3. be able to write a first hand account of the experience at Har Sinai and how it felt to be there

When you click on the Jewish Education by Design resource link featured above, you will find the following educational building blocks for the creation of a lesson plan:

  1. Essential questions that get to the “heart” of the learning

  2. A hook/s to open the lesson in an engaging fashion and spark the learners’ curiosity

  3. In depth discussion questions that are designed to elicit conceptual thinking and personal reflections about the featured source/s

  4. Suggested activities that enable the students to both process and apply what was learned in a thought provoking and creative fashion

A further study option/s to related materials on the JEBD site or to external links

Student handout, computer, projector

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