Nurturing Sparks Into Flames

Read the personal accounts of lives transformed.

“Yehudis had the hardest time adapting to “conventional schools”. She just didn't fit. She was labeled with behavioral challenges and even if she was the prettiest, brightest and sweetest girl in the world, it wouldn't make a difference. Her strengths were not important at all, only the difficult challenges mattered. I would not settle. When Yehudis was 5 years old, I looked for something better. An when I met Rivkah and Yocheved at Lamplighters, I knew it would be different. They were understanding and compassionate. They didn’t even know me! No fancy name. No fancy pocket. I was just a mother. At first it was a challenge for everyone. Her teachers used many strategies to understand and help her. Of course as her mother, I know that she is capable, bright and special! Now, for the first time, her educators knew, too. And together, we could see her thrive. Now she’s in third grade. She is an asset to her class and is even thriving beyond school -- she was awarded ‘Camper of the Summer!’ I am so grateful for this school and the love they give my daughter - and me.”

“Yehudis had the hardest time adapting to “conventional schools”. She just didn't fit. She was labeled with behavioral challenges and even if she was the prettiest, brightest and sweetest girl in the world, it wouldn't make a difference. Her strengths were not important at all, only the difficult challenges mattered.

I would not settle. When Yehudis was 5 years old, I looked for something better. An when I met Rivkah and Yocheved at Lamplighters, I knew it would be different. They were understanding and compassionate. They didn’t even know me! No fancy name. No fancy pocket. I was just a mother.

At first it was a challenge for everyone. Her teachers used many strategies to understand and help her. Of course as her mother, I know that she is capable, bright and special! Now, for the first time, her educators knew, too. And together, we could see her thrive.

Now she’s in third grade. She is an asset to her class and is even thriving beyond school -- she was awarded ‘Camper of the Summer!’ I am so grateful for this school and the love they give my daughter - and me.”

YEHUDIS

Upper Elementary Student


“I had been a Teach For America corps member in the South Bronx and wanted to use my training as a teacher to do something meaningful for the Jewish community.  When I met the Schacks at a job fair in Crown Heights, I could tell right away that they worked just as hard at developing teachers as they did at educating children.  Three years later, I can say that working at Lamplighters has taught me more about pedagogy than my master's degree in childhood education, and more about shlichus than my years in yeshivah. In that time, I have seen that my students’ successes in the classroom reflect the investment that the Lamplighters administration makes in its teachers. Thank G-d, I became a father recently. I don't know what the future holds for my son, but I know that Hashem created him with a special mission. I pray that he gets the sort of education that the staff of Lamplighters work to give every student they meet --an education in which his unique purpose in life is realized, honored and facilitated.  That's the education that every Jewish child deserves.”  

“I had been a Teach For America corps member in the South Bronx and wanted to use my training as a teacher to do something meaningful for the Jewish community.  When I met the Schacks at a job fair in Crown Heights, I could tell right away that they worked just as hard at developing teachers as they did at educating children.  Three years later, I can say that working at Lamplighters has taught me more about pedagogy than my master's degree in childhood education, and more about shlichus than my years in yeshivah. In that time, I have seen that my students’ successes in the classroom reflect the investment that the Lamplighters administration makes in its teachers.

Thank G-d, I became a father recently. I don't know what the future holds for my son, but I know that Hashem created him with a special mission. I pray that he gets the sort of education that the staff of Lamplighters work to give every student they meet --an education in which his unique purpose in life is realized, honored and facilitated.  That's the education that every Jewish child deserves.”

 

rabbi isaac shapira

Rebbe, Elementary Development Coordinator


“When it was time to send our gentle son to school, we were drawn to Lamplighters because we sensed that there, the child is at the center of his own education and had faith they would be attentive to his unique personality. The care the Lamplighters educators take of each child’s mind, heart and soul is extraordinary. Our son bloomed from a shy observer to a confident class leader who is compassionate, respectful, and considerate. Without coddling, he felt secure in his environment; without cajoling, he progressed through learning; without direction, he takes initiative. When our younger son became a Lamplighter, we observed the teachers navigate his entirely different personality in a completely customized way -- that was equally successful for him. Lamplighters has transformed us as a family, too, in the the way we view chinuch and parent. They serve as a model of the positive approach, with an eye toward long-term results and disciplining while nurturing a strong self esteem. They are available for questions - even for issues that are far beyond the purview of school. We are better parents for being Lamplighters, and my boys are better friends to each other.” -- Chana Shaffer - Minkowitz

“When it was time to send our gentle son to school, we were drawn to Lamplighters because we sensed that there, the child is at the center of his own education and had faith they would be attentive to his unique personality. The care the Lamplighters educators take of each child’s mind, heart and soul is extraordinary. Our son bloomed from a shy observer to a confident class leader who is compassionate, respectful, and considerate. Without coddling, he felt secure in his environment; without cajoling, he progressed through learning; without direction, he takes initiative. When our younger son became a Lamplighter, we observed the teachers navigate his entirely different personality in a completely customized way -- that was equally successful for him.

Lamplighters has transformed us as a family, too, in the the way we view chinuch and parent. They serve as a model of the positive approach, with an eye toward long-term results and disciplining while nurturing a strong self esteem. They are available for questions - even for issues that are far beyond the purview of school. We are better parents for being Lamplighters, and my boys are better friends to each other.”


-- Chana Shaffer - Minkowitz

the minkowitz family

At Lamplighters Since 2013


“Through his years at preschool and now lower elementary at Lamplighters Yeshivah, Tzvi became a student whose learning trajectory is off the charts. More importantly, with the diligence of his educators, his self confidence and love of learning has grown exponentially. He is inspired to keep on pushing, particularly outside of school -- he sleeps with a shofar to be ready for Moshiach and is so motivated by how much Tanya he has learned by heart.  There is simply no doubt in our minds this is a direct result of custom tailored "works" that the Lamplighters team has created on his behalf. By zeroing in on the excitement of Judaism, Lamplighters infused Tzvi with skills that far exceed typical knowledge and skills based learning, and have built him up as a student and a genuine chossid. We are eternally grateful and are so excited by what’s yet to come.” As told by Tzvi’s father

“Through his years at preschool and now lower elementary at Lamplighters Yeshivah, Tzvi became a student whose learning trajectory is off the charts. More importantly, with the diligence of his educators, his self confidence and love of learning has grown exponentially. He is inspired to keep on pushing, particularly outside of school -- he sleeps with a shofar to be ready for Moshiach and is so motivated by how much Tanya he has learned by heart.  There is simply no doubt in our minds this is a direct result of custom tailored "works" that the Lamplighters team has created on his behalf. By zeroing in on the excitement of Judaism, Lamplighters infused Tzvi with skills that far exceed typical knowledge and skills based learning, and have built him up as a student and a genuine chossid. We are eternally grateful and are so excited by what’s yet to come.”

As told by Tzvi’s father

tzvi

Lower Elementary Student


"Turning our dream into reality required mentors, partners, fellow visionaries, tools, methods, curriculum, trainers... an oxygen tank. Lamplighters served in all these capacities. Four years ago, we had an idea to transform chinuch for Cincinnati's children and create a Jewish Montessori track in the local school. With the help of Lamplighters' training program and curriculum sharing over the past years, we now have a filled-to-capacity Jewish Montessori preschool program and lower elementary class. And next year, with the loving help of Hashem, Morah RIvkah and Lamplighters, our plan is to add a third grade class and a new preschool class! We have endless gratitude to Lamplighters for helping us facilitate this for the sake of bringing out the greatness of every Jewish child. We look further to continuing our partnership and mentorship with Lamplighters."  

"Turning our dream into reality required mentors, partners, fellow visionaries, tools, methods, curriculum, trainers... an oxygen tank. Lamplighters served in all these capacities. Four years ago, we had an idea to transform chinuch for Cincinnati's children and create a Jewish Montessori track in the local school. With the help of Lamplighters' training program and curriculum sharing over the past years, we now have a filled-to-capacity Jewish Montessori preschool program and lower elementary class. And next year, with the loving help of Hashem, Morah RIvkah and Lamplighters, our plan is to add a third grade class and a new preschool class! We have endless gratitude to Lamplighters for helping us facilitate this for the sake of bringing out the greatness of every Jewish child. We look further to continuing our partnership and mentorship with Lamplighters."  

dr chaviva randolph

Educator, Trainee


“I’ve been in different learning environments, as a teacher and student... Schools that weren’t conducive for growth, schools that were ignorant, and the worst - schools with uninspired teachers - it bothered me. As soon as I heard about Lamplighters, I applied to teach there - and fell in love with it. At Lamplighters, teachers are educated in the same way as children - through love, passion and acceptance. Morahs Rivkah and Ilana spend so much time lighting my spark, I naturally feel inclined to do the same to my students. This beautiful cycle of being lit and, in turn, lighting others has trained me to seek the potential in every one of  my students - to light their sparks with the same patience and love that I was ignited with. Being involved in the holy work of lamplighting has been carried over to my life in ways I never imagined. I look deeper and more kindly at the people in my life... but most importantly, I look deeper and more kindly at myself. I dream harder, love deeper, and above all, with each passing day at Lamplighters, I stand taller -- as I believe in myself more.”

“I’ve been in different learning environments, as a teacher and student... Schools that weren’t conducive for growth, schools that were ignorant, and the worst - schools with uninspired teachers - it bothered me. As soon as I heard about Lamplighters, I applied to teach there - and fell in love with it.

At Lamplighters, teachers are educated in the same way as children - through love, passion and acceptance. Morahs Rivkah and Ilana spend so much time lighting my spark, I naturally feel inclined to do the same to my students. This beautiful cycle of being lit and, in turn, lighting others has trained me to seek the potential in every one of  my students - to light their sparks with the same patience and love that I was ignited with.

Being involved in the holy work of lamplighting has been carried over to my life in ways I never imagined. I look deeper and more kindly at the people in my life... but most importantly, I look deeper and more kindly at myself. I dream harder, love deeper, and above all, with each passing day at Lamplighters, I stand taller -- as I believe in myself more.”

morah inbal levin

Teacher, Lower Elementary Girls


“As someone who grew up in Crown Heights, the one-size-fits-all approach to education is something that many, including myself, resigned themselves them to. There were mainstream schools which took one approach and "other" schools for "different" kids. The founders of Lamplighters were the few trailblazers who refused to resign themselves to that. Partnering with Lamplighters has given me the opportunity to not resign myself either. That a Montessori school could thrive in Crown Heights was at one point wishful thinking. It's not any more. Now, if I no longer have a sense of resignation in this, what other possibilities exist in my world that I thought impossible to change? This question is what Lamplighters has brought to my life; and answering this question is how I become a Lamplighter myself.” Eli was one of our first major donors and established our tuition aid fund, the FlameFund. When we honored Eli at our gala, it was the first time he spoke publicly and openly advocated for an organization. Since then, Eli is a champion for many. He has a mission to expand the impact of philanthropy to be not only an investment of capital, but of passion.  

“As someone who grew up in Crown Heights, the one-size-fits-all approach to education is something that many, including myself, resigned themselves them to. There were mainstream schools which took one approach and "other" schools for "different" kids. The founders of Lamplighters were the few trailblazers who refused to resign themselves to that.

Partnering with Lamplighters has given me the opportunity to not resign myself either. That a Montessori school could thrive in Crown Heights was at one point wishful thinking. It's not any more. Now, if I no longer have a sense of resignation in this, what other possibilities exist in my world that I thought impossible to change? This question is what Lamplighters has brought to my life; and answering this question is how I become a Lamplighter myself.”

Eli was one of our first major donors and established our tuition aid fund, the FlameFund. When we honored Eli at our gala, it was the first time he spoke publicly and openly advocated for an organization. Since then, Eli is a champion for many. He has a mission to expand the impact of philanthropy to be not only an investment of capital, but of passion.

 

Mr. eli nash

Partner


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