Year Honored: 2014
Valley Beth Shalom Harold M. Schulweis Day School
Ariela Nehemne wears multiple hats as a kindergarten teacher, peer mentor and technology leader at VBS, a Conservative Jewish day school for grades K–6 in Encino. Kindergartners enter the year with little if any Hebrew background; yet, speaking only Hebrew, Nehemne brings the language and Jewish heritage to life through music, art, cooking, drama, movement and literature. Whether students explore a classroom transformed into a Persian Shushan castle at Purim or lead a Passover seder by performing the story in Hebrew, they are building a foundation for success in school. Nehemne also mentors the entire VBS staff in best practices to achieve Hebrew proficiency, in curriculum mapping, and by integrating diverse forms of technology into the curriculum.
Note: This biography was current at the time this educator received the Award