Forest Judaism: A Creative Writing Course

New Class

What does nature have to do with Judaism, and what does any of this have to do with creative writing? Become an explorer of nature, of creation stories, and of your own perfect world – right from your home computer!

writing
birthday-cake 11 - 13 year olds
users 6 - 12 learners per meeting
info-circle Nature and Writing
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Available Times

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Course Details

Description

What does nature have to do with Judaism, and what does any of this have to do with creative writing? Become an explorer of nature, of creation stories, and of your own perfect world – right from your home computer! Whether you are into sci-fi, poetry, or realistic story telling, this course gives you and your pen/keyboard room to roam through forests, deserts, oceans, and Torah, and empowers you to grow-your-own-world. We will read several creation stories and myths, read nature-based writing from different cultures, and look for nature in our home or out our window/door to inspire our creative juices. In the end, we will write our stories and Create our worlds.

Class 1: Reading Jewish Perspectives on nature. Reading Sources. First writing practice/creation/assignment

Class 2: Sharing of writing assignment. Work on honing in on what you love about nature and what you want to share. Assignment

Class 3: Sharing of writing. Nature Poems, haikus and shorts

Supply List

Students will need a notebook, pencils/pens. Please bring in pictures of yourself in nature for session 1.

In this class we will be writing. Make sure you have a desk/table to write and/or a computer or tablet you can type on. Preferably students will also be near a window that looks out onto nature. But if you only have a picture of a natural area, that will suffice too!

Teacher

Josh (He/Him)
Josh Lake
In 2004 Josh founded Outdoor Jewish Adventures (OJA), a company specializing in outdoor experiences, education and adventures for Jews. Josh’s education includes a Master’s Degree in Jewish Education from the Jewish Theological Seminary, completion of the Informal Jewish Education seminar at Brandies University, Wilderness First Responder (WFR) Certification from the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS), and many years of hiking, backpacking, camping and outdoor experiences. Josh also completed the Guides Track in Leadership Seminar, a 4-week seminar in Jewish Wilderness Spirituality. Josh has spent the last 25 years leading Jewish nature programming for children and adults throughout the United States, Canada and Israel. Jewish traditions come alive as a hike through the forest becomes a walk through the six days of Creation. Protection of the natural world takes on new meaning when mitzvoth (commandments) inform us of how we can behave in Creation with more kavannah (intention). Wilderness skills allow us to more fully be partners in Creation and to explore the beauty and fullness of our world. In addition to leading outdoor experiences, Josh writes about them as well. Writing about our experiences in nature allows us to share our love of the natural world with others, as well as our future selves!