The Work of our (Divine) Hands (2 of 3)
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The Work of our (Divine) Hands (2 of 3)

grades:  Middle School (6-8) 

Lesson Summary:

The purpose of this lesson: 

Our lives are the results of billions of decisions. Not only the big decisions – law school or skydiving classes, but the small decisions as well – do you greet someone or pass by? Do you extend a helping hand or the back of it? What we decide determines the course of lives, the content of our character and the condition of our world. In this lesson we look at texts that speak to how we use our personal power in this world and then find and record opportunities to act on the learning.

This lesson comes from a unit called "We Are Divine Creations"  on, a resource that offers philanthropy education resources that teach giving and civic engagement.

This unit's purpose:

Our tradition of caring and sharing for one another has its roots in the creation of humanity b’tzelem elohim, (in the Divine image). That concept is explained in concrete terms by Maimonides (Rabbi Moses ben Maimon) and helps form an ethical imperative that sanctifies our everyday behavior. This lesson enables the learners to develop an understanding of tolerance that is based in the universal concept that all of humanity shares a Divine origin.

Focus Question:
How we are to treat one another and why we are expected to do so?

The other lessons in this unit include:
You and Me and God Make Three!
Our Works Can Be Divine

republished with permission


  • summarize, analyze, interpret, and paraphrase selected texts that contain ethical mitzvot (commandments) concerning the relationship between people (ben adam l’chavero).
  • demonstrate an awareness of how these texts can be used in their own lives. 
  • identify and relate personal experiences in which the mitzvot ben adam l’chavero have played a role in their own lives. 
  • acknowledge the implications/consequences of their choices/actions. 
  • demonstrate an ability to assess one’s choice to act--leading to moral growth.

Be Inspired:The ideas included are offered as starting points as you and your students explore, discover and live the lessons. Be sure to elicit and encourage student and parent participation, consistently reinforcing the value being addressed. Allow lessons to authentically develop and change based on engagement and interests.

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For the educatorJewish Thought, Text, and Traditionsmore

Jewish every dayIncorporate Jewish Valuesmore

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