Why do we traditionally pray in a minyan (quorum)? What are the benefits of praying as a group? In this resource, learners will learn the Rabbinic sources for this ritual (see background for teacher), and read a moving excerpt from “One of the Minyan”, that illustrates the relationship between tefilla and community. This story serves as a natural jumping off point for students to discuss their opinions and experiences regarding the pros and cons of praying individually and in a group. Students will broaden their perspectives by researching other rituals in which a minimum number of participants must be present and seeking explanations as to why this is of value.

The learner will:

  1. Understand how communal prayer has the capacity to transform the personal experience of each individual in the group

  2. know the Rabbinic source for praying with a minyan, as well as the content of the story excerpt

  3. Be able to write about a life experience that was enhanced as a result of having done so in a group setting, and explain how these reflections can be applied towards making  communal prayer more meaningful

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

Further Study option/s linked to JEBD sources and related links

Student handout, computer, projector

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