"I chose teaching because it inspires me," says 2015 Jewish Educator Award winner Hanna Keynan of Pressman Academy at Temple Beth Am in Los Angeles. "The students inspire me every day."
The Jewish Educator Award is a $15,000 prize given by the Milken Family Foundation to recognize outstanding Jewish day school educators. Keynan was surprised with her award during a schoolwide assembly. The announcements were made by Milken Family Foundation Executive Vice President Richard Sandler and BJE: Builders of Jewish Education Executive Director Dr. Gil Graff.
Creativity infuses the curriculum at Pressman Academy, where "students learn Hebrew through art and art through Hebrew," thanks to Keynan. The work of famous artists is used to inspire children; Matisse, for instance, is studied and emulated by second graders, whereas Keith Haring is the artist of choice for seventh graders. Keynan mounts an annual three-day event at Pressman in May that not only showcases the multimedia art produced by children, but integrates music, language and ethics for an unforgettable cultural experience.All videos should be credited to the “Milken Family Foundation.”