Jewish Education at The Davidson School

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How To Open A Can Of Worms - Jewish Dialogue Group Shows The Way

Posted by Danny on April 23, 2013 at 10:35 AM

How can one successfully facilitate a group of Jews discussing matters of heated conflict? For too many, the experience of talking with family, friends, or other community members about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has been exhausting. "Opening a can of worms," as one participant of the recent Jewish Dialogue Group Facilitator Training workshop described it. Ten participants from the Davidson School attended the three-hour workshop this past Sunday, April 21st, to help them help others engage the diversity, complexity, nuance, and humanity of controversial topics.


For over ten years the Jewish Dialogue Group (JDG), led by its founding director and trained mediator Mitch Chanin, has taught community members how to facilitate small groups meeting together to discuss the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Facilitators in these conversations help to protect the conversation, keep participants speaking within pre-established time constraints and a common communication agreement.


 You can read a reflection on this past Sunday's JDG workshop here, written by Davidson student Aharon Varady.


The Jewish Dialogue Group Facilitator Training workshop was co-facilitated by Mitch Chanin and Chanel Dubofsky. The session was organized by first year Davidson students Sigal Hirsch and Joe Robbins, following JDG work with Davidson School Rabbi in Residence Jonathan Lipnick's Mifgash circle. 


For educators and facilitators interested in learning more, please check out the Jewish Dialogue Group website and especially their recently published Guidebook for Deliberation about the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict (JDG 2012). You can also download the JDG Facilitator Manual, ""Constructive Conversations about the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict."

Categories: Davidson School News and Announcements

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