Hailing from Holliston, Massachusetts, Ariel Holman joined the Temple Israel community as the Youth Group Coordinator in August of 2016. She graduated from Muhlenberg College with a BA in Theatre and a certification to teach pre-K to 4th grade. While in high school she restarted the Holliston USY chapter, and under her leadership the chapter received a NERUSY Silver Chapter of Excellence Award.
During the summer, Ariel also works as the Performing Arts Department Head at Camp Tevya. Outside of working as the Youth Coordinator, Ariel enjoys reading, writing, cooking, and playing with her two dogs, Mollie and Albus, and her turtle, Shell.
Ariel is excited to become a part of the Temple Israel community, so make sure to come say hello!
Debbi Finkelstein earned her B.A. from Brandeis University in History and American Studies and her M.Ed. for High School History from Lesley University. She is currently the Cultural Arts Specialist at the Cohen Hillel Academy and the Assistant Director of Natick Drama Workshop. Debbi also continues to learn about history by working at the Natick Historical Society during the school year, and at George's Island as a Park Interpreter during the summer. Although Debbi grew up at Temple Israel of Natick, she is very excited to be working at Temple Israel of Sharon!
Gila has fallen in love with the Temple Israel community. She loves leading Tot Shabbats and practicing Tfillot with 5th grade. Gila works as a nanny and has worked as office manager at Ohabei Shalom in Brookline. She was also lucky enough to work for Cornerstone four years in a row (Foundation for Jewish Camp's leadership conference). Gila's goal is to infuse love and enthusiasm for Judaism into each of her students while showing them how to use their passions for Tikun Olam (repairing the world) and spreading joy.
Elaine S. Glick has enjoyed working in bilingual settings and educational administration in the Greater Boston area. With a Masters from Simmons College in Education and Foreign Languages, she taught in Attleboro Public School's Spanish immersion/ESL program. At Temple Emanuel in Newton, she began teaching part-time as a young mom, then gradually rose to the leadership roles of Primary Coordinator and Educational Director. Returning to Sharon, she's excited to be back in the classroom, assisting in local Hebrew Day Schools and learning with enthusiastic students at Temple Israel. Elaine was chosen as a CJP "Renaissance Educator," but her greatest reward has been raising three daughters and one son with her supportive husband, Herb, and seeing Judaic values being transmitted to the next generation.
Joan Waldman is an experienced teacher of children with special needs, having taught students in pre-K to 8th grade in the public schools for over 30 years. She enjoyed both teaching the students and working with their families toward common goals. She is a long-time Temple Israel member, with a strong and enduring interest in Jewish studies, including a major in Judaic Studies at Brandeis University. Joan studied and taught in Israel for 3 years and speaks Hebrew. Joan reads Torah regularly at Temple Israel and has tutored T.I. students as part of their Bar and Bat Mitzvah training. This past year, she also taught a class familiarizing pre-Bar/Bat Mitzvah students with the structure of the Torah and studying selected weekly portions. In addition, she worked on a project to improve the Hebrew reading of our school’s students. She is looking forward to working with the new team of educators and to getting to know her new group of students and their families.
My name is Karen Binder and I am excited to be teaching first grade this year! This will be my first year teaching at Temple Israel Religious School, but my 4th year at Hertz Nursery School at Temple Israel. I graduated UMass in 2000 with a degree in Early Childhood and Sociology. I received my Masters in Early Childhood Education from Bridgewater State in 2002. I was a first grade teacher in Franklin before deciding to stay home with my children. I live in Sharon with my husband Adam, and sons Josh who is 9 and Evan who is 7.
I am the Director of Athletics/Physical Education teacher k-8 at JCDS in Watertown. I taught Phys. Ed. at KSA in Norwood for 4 years and was the Aquatics Director for 13 years at the former Striar JCC. I will be beginning my second year at Temple Israel as the Kindergarten teacher. The majority of my career has been teaching, which I absolutely love. During vacations and free time I love to golf, travel, and do anything that involves the water. I am married and I live in Canton with 2 dogs and 2 cats.
My name is Barbara Fine and I have been teaching Religious School for over 25 years. I live in Sharon with my husband and have two children that are grown. I love teaching and getting to know each student that comes into my life. I look forward to a wonderful year.
I have been working with my partner in crime, Barbara Fine, for the past 8 years facilitating Telem. We began at Heights Crossing for several years and then went to the Fireman House where we found many residents interested in bonding with teenagers. We have the most amazing teenagers! Barbara and I have known most of there students through Religious School at Temple Israel or Beth Emunah and I even had many of them as students at Hertz Nursery School. It is the highlight of my week to be with the residents and our students.
Aviva Zucker is excited to be part of the Religious School staff at Temple Israel, and looks forward to sharing her passion for Hebrew and Yiddishkeit with her students. A recent graduate of Brandeis University, Aviva especially values the classes she took in Modern Hebrew, Yiddish, and Jewish History, and spending a semester in Jerusalem. As a product of a synagogue (K-8) education program, Aviva's enthusiasm for learning Hebrew was nourished during her high school years.
Elah Grandel was born in Boston. Her parents brought her to Israel when she was 2 years old, and since her father is an American and her mom Israeli, she basically grew up in a bilingual home. Elah grew up in Jerusalem and started playing the bassoon when she went to study at the Rubin Academy High School. Following that, she joined the Israeli Army and served there for two years in the program for distinguished musicians. During her Army service she was able to study at the Rubin Academy for higher education, where she received her Bachelor's degree in music performance. Elah came to Boston with her husband, Misha Grandel (a fantastic trumpet player), in 1999 and graduated with a Master's in music performance from Boston University. Since coming to the States, Elah has led a dual life of both an active musician and a Hebrew teacher. Elah taught for 12 year at Mishkan Tefilah's Hebrew school. She also taught at The Israeli Complementary School in Brookline for 5 years and then served as the director of the school for 3 years. Elah is a strong advocate for languages, whether it's music or Hebrew, and believes we should offer our children as many opportunities as possible for acquiring languages, as they are a real gift!
My name is Ellen Weiner and I have been teaching religious school for the past 8 years. I also was Youth Director, Senior Advisor, and Kadima Advisor for many years at Temple Beth Emunah. I am very excited to bring my Jewish knowledge and love for Judaism to the 3rd grade at Temple Israel.
My name is Lauren Middleman and I am very excited to teach 5th Grade this year! I am new to the community but have already felt warmly welcomed. I graduated from Simmons College in 2014 with my Bachelor's in History and in 2015 with my Master's in Teaching. I have been completing Long-Term Substitute positions in Franklin and Norwood, and have been subbing daily in several districts such as Providence, Westwood, and North Attleboro. I am looking forward to getting to know parents and students and working with everyone to make this not just a learning experience for the children but also for myself.