Its time for back-to-school — and for
AppleTree's annual cool, cool story on
Judaism and education.
IV atch out, Big Bird.
If it were up to author Fran
Lebowitz (never one famous
for her subtlety), programs like
Sesame Street would be off the air faster than
Oscar the Grouch can say, "I love trash."
"Educational television should be
absolutely forbidden," Lebowitz said.
"It can only lead to unreasonable disap-
pointment when your child discovers that
the letters of the alphabet do not leap up out
of books and dance around with royal-blue
At the same time, Albert Einstein never
looked favorably on what goes on in the
classroom. "Education is that which remains
when one has forgotten everything he
learned in school;" he said.
The leaves are turning a dazzling orange
and golden and bright red, the air is crisp
and fresh and discount stores are offering
sales on pencils, notebooks and glue. It can
mean only one thing: It's time for school
In honor of this happy occasion, Fact-A-
Day presents 31 facts about Judaism and
visit the site's Geography
Game. You can take a quiz
of 10-101 questions, all of
which focus on Interesting
places in Israel. For exam-
ple, did you know that
Migdal HaEmek was found-
ed in 1953 by immigrants
from China? When you
answer correctly at this fun
and happy spot, you'll be
rewarded with ; "Good
#3) Rest assured all those dollars for your
children's Jewish day school education are
paying off. Not only are they learning, but
according to the 1990 National Jewish
Population Survey, "98 children out of 100
who received a traditional Hebrew day
school education until grade 12 married
within the Jewish faith."
#4) If you're interested in learning more
about how to secure a Jewish education for
your child in any place in the United States,
France or Switzerland, visit the Jewish
Education Network's Web site at
#1) If you're considering a career in educa-
tion, remember what the great scholar Hillel
said was one of the most important charac-
teristics of any teacher: patience. "An impa-
tient man," he warned, "cannot be a
#5) Here's an important, but often over-
looked, bit of information about Jewish
prayer. The word 'Amen" means "so be it"
and should be said in response to a brachah
or prayer stated by another person. You should
not say "Amen" to the end of your own
#2) Think you're a genius when it comes to
Israel's geography (or, just want to test your
knowledge of what is where)? Check out
#6) The Talmud, in Shabbat 119a, states
that "A village without a school should be
You can learn a lot by learning a little. In
Fact-A-Day, AppleTree provides you with
fascinating tidbits about any Jewish subject,
past or present.
Here's a collection of 31 — one for each
day of the month — great facts about
Judaism and education (to get you in the
mood for school, of course).
while "A town
children is doomed to destruction."
#7) If you prefer to get the real scoop on
what's happening in Israel today, a good
place to start is the Jewish Agency's
Department for Jewish Zionist Education.
Visit the Web site at
#8) For information about Jewish children
with special learning needs, contact P'TACH
(Parents for Torah for All Children) at (248)
#9) Many languages are relatively new. Not
the aleph-bet. It has been 'around since the
time of the Exodus. The oldest known
inscription showing the complete aleph-bet
is from 1000 B.C.E., the time of King
David. So if you haven't learned the aleph-
bet yet, what are you waiting for?
#10) One of the most difficult mitzvot to
observe is that of Ahavat Yisrael, loving your
fellow Jew. While the great sage Hillel was
Do you have a suggestion for Fact-A-Day?
Please drop us a line at email@example.com