This article continues a series of articles about the Hebrew tutors at the Adventure Judaism Congregation
David Spiegler began tutoring with us in 2010 and continues to be a favorite of our students. He is kind, patient and passionate about Jewish education. He generally teaches students online or in their homes.
David is a Psychologist with a doctorate in child and adolescent psychology, and a love of Judaism nourished over many years. Raised in an Orthodox home as a child, a Conservative synagogue through adolescence, and Reform congregations as an adult, he has always been a leader in his community. He is active in the ADL, and has served as President, chair of numerous committees, lay cantor for services and holidays, and as a long-time teacher in various religious school settings, covering 3rd grade through Confirmation. Currently, he teaches 6th grade Hebrew and prepares students for B’nai Mitzvah online and in the Arvada, Colorado area.
Over the course of 40+ years, in addition to helping children and families resolve some of life’s most difficult trials, David has taught Judaism and Hebrew to students who presented with a wide range of skills and needs, including many with significant cognitive and emotional challenges. He creatively channels his clinical problem-solving experience and expertise, into his teaching strategies with children. Just as every child has her/his own particular learning style and pace, through a brief diagnostic interview with each student and family, he incorporates that information into a teaching strategy unique to that student.
David strongly believes in meeting and accepting children and families where they are at that moment in their religious and secular lives. Working in concert with the Rabbis, he develops realistic and respectful plans of preparation, enabling students and their families to realize a deeply meaningful and joyous B’nei Mitzvah experience.
In David’s Own Words, Why He Does This Work
“I have loved teaching as far back as I can remember. There is nothing more exciting for me than those first moments when a child, adolescent, or even adult, first grasp a skill or an idea that unexpectedly opens up new worlds of understanding and opportunity, i.e., those ‘ah-ha’ moments, especially in children’s lives, when the thrill of new learning makes the world suddenly, and gleefully bite-sized and manageable.”
“Helping young people prepare for becoming a Bat/Bar Mitzvah has always been, for me, one of those ‘ah-ha’ teaching experiences, the amazingly transformative passage from childhood to spiritual adulthood. To partner, with parents and Rabbi, in a child’s inevitable transformation over this period is, for me, a rare and precious gift.”