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We will be publishing extracts and other news weekly on our blog.
We step in where central education fails
Every May and June our contact volunteers visit their projects to check to what extent the children are benefitting from the help the Talia Trust has given them since the beginning of the school year.
Here are examples of how you have helped children in two projects, one in a high school and the other for primary school children at a community centre.
At Kfar HaNoar HaDati high school D, who is 16, told our volunteer, Leah Rottenshtreich, that a few months ago she was given a psycho-didactic assessment, subsidized by the Talia Trust. Recently she took part in the learning strategies course the Talia Trust finances in memory of Barrie Greenson z.l.(as described in the December 2022 newsletter).
D had been assessed because she has difficulty with language learning and suffers from attention and concentration difficulties. She was disorganized and had always needed guidance to fulfil academic tasks .
The immediate result of the course is that now D feels less pressurized. By following the methods taught in the course, D is already more comfortable and successful when solving exam questions. Listen to D here
The Talia Trust was founded for children just like D. We are so glad to know that she is already feeling more positive about her studies and wish her much success.
The recently released PIRLS international reading assessment results show that Israeli 10 year olds' reading level last year dropped dramatically, even compared to other countries. Currently the Talia Trust has 4 reading projects, three in Hebrew and one in English.
I would like to tell you what Orly Zalikovich, our volunteer who monitors the Haifa project, heard about the seven to eight year olds who have been coming to our after-school Hebrew reading course for young school children at the Neve Yosef community centre. The course has been running for 6 months . She told us that the second grade children are working on accurate reading and comprehension.
S and M are learning singular and plural, with an emphasis on exceptions to the rule.
Orly was amazed to hear from the project's teacher, Hiba'at, about one little boy, Y (not pictured):
"His classroom teacher described him as "stupid", his school was thinking of moving him to special education. He is an intelligent child who has developed this year, has become sociable and independent, though he is still catching up on first grade material."
At last Y is learning to read, thanks to the Talia Trust.
Hopefully our course will continue next year, too, and Y will reach his class-mates' level. The Talia Trust is happy to give him the extra help not available at his school and appreciate the individual help to the children from our volunteer,Esther Bibas.
Again, thanks to all our volunteers. Next month - news from two more projects.
April 2023 Update
“Wow! Many, many thanks to all the 40 runners & over 100 supporters in the recent Jerusalem Marathon. It is always an amazing and exhilarating experience to join thousands of runners through the streets of Jerusalem, and then to realize that our small group in this event has so far managed to raise 27,000 shekels for our 5 Remedial Teaching projects for needy children throughout Israel. Finally, a special thanks is due to all those who helped to organize this event, particularly Lynn Golumbic, Linda Altshul, and Sam Ackerman. Through all your efforts, we are now able to give 70 children a better start in life.”
On a sad note, we regret to tell you of the untimely passing of Malka Hertstein who volunteered with us tirelessly for many years, in preparation of the annual Rosh HaShanah campaign every summer. We send our condolences to her husband, Dennis, and to her children. May her memory be for a blessing.
We sincerely wish all our donors and readers "Chag Sameach", for whichever festival you celebrate.
The Talia Trust Committee members
March 2023 Update
In a few days' time, our 2023 Jerusalem marathon participants will be running or walking to fund our four remedial programs for younger schoolchildren and one for older children. So far 40 runners plan to take part and wear our bright yellow Talia Trust t-shirts with the logo you can see printed above. Look out for them on March 17th.
You can see why they are running by clicking the link and watching our new short video.
This time the Talia Trust is concentrating on raising funds for small group remedial teaching.
Our current primary school language projects are, from north to south:
Shirat Hayam, Kiryat Yam - group remedial work in Hebrew for twelve 6 to 8year old (see the February 2023 Update below).
Matnas Neve Yosef, Haifa – after school remedial reading for ten 7 to 9 year olds (see January 2023 update below) in two groups, in a local community centre.
Jabotinsky, Bet Shemesh - Hebrew reading and comprehension for 8 children aged 7-8 in two groups.(Featured in September 2022 newsletter)
Givat Gonen, Jerusalem - English language group remedial teaching for twenty-three children aged 7-12.
Givat Gonen is our largest and longest-running remedial teaching project for young children. The school's population is still socio-economically very weak in the main. Parents cannot fund remedial teaching themselves and the school's budget is over-stretched.
The course is dynamically taught by Dorit Shostak. We think that it is a most successful project .
Since October, three of the children have progressed so fast that they have already rejoined their other schoolfriends, near the top of the class!
In addition, as reported in December 2022, the Barrie Greenson learning strategies project at Kfar HaNoar Kfar Hassidim got off to a good start and the school hopes to continue it in the next school year. A group of freemasons plan to run in memory of Barrie z"l and to raise funds specifically for this project.
Anyone able to sponsor our sportsmen, women and children, please use this link:http://bit.ly/3SoNAS1
With sincere thanks
Marilyn and all the Talia Trust committee
February 2023 update
Reading in Haifa and our Jerusalem Marathon campaign
Following last month's update about the new reading project taught by Hiba'at at the Neve Yosef community centre in the city of Haifa , we would like to tell you more about the other exciting reading programme funded by the Talia Trust at Shirat HaYam school, in Kiryat Yam in the Haifa Bay area.
Our volunteers and committee members, Lynne Toubkin and Linda Yama, have just re-visited there, meeting with the school's principal and counsellor.
They report that "This run down elementary school was on the verge of closing before the incoming head and his dedicated staff changed its educational goals to that of an inclusive school with an anthroposophic emphasis." In less than three years, the school has already made a positive impact on the community. Most of the 100 children in the school come from a low-income background. "Some are given breakfast at school, else they would not have food in the morning. All the children are given lunch so that they are sure to get a hot meal during the day."
Our project is now in its second year with 12 children participating. There are 3 groups having 2 Hebrew language lessons weekly, an hour twice a week. In each group there are 4 children. This year the children are from first to third grades (6-8year olds). The children were selected firstly on the basis of having a gap between their level and the average class level and secondly because they come from homes in which the parents are unable to help them, a situation that impacts on the children’s self-esteem in the classroom .
"We sat in the class and were impressed by Oria's (our teacher's) creativity and positive interaction with the children. We learned from the school counsellor, Maayan, that the children were eager to learn with her. In addition, the class teachers can see a difference in the self-confidence and the learning strategies of the children in the full class situation. This is not to say that the gap can be completely narrowed but a good start is being made....
We feel very strongly that this project is helping these children achieve progress in a way that would not happen without the help and support of the Talia Trust."
The two children had their small group lesson physically near their classmates. Lynne wrote "They then returned to the full class who were doing a similar exercise but at a higher level. The idea is that they do not feel they are missing out."
We do hope we will be able to continue this kind of projects in the future. Of course this is partly dependent on the success of our annual Jerusalem Marathon campaign on March 17th.
Please let us know if you are going to take part by contacting Lynn Golumbic at firstname.lastname@example.org as soon as possible.
If you cannot join us physically, please consider supporting one of our runners via https://my.israelgives.org/en/campaign/Marathon2023
January 2023 Update
7 to 8 year olds still can't read
Recently The Talia Trust was approached to finance a new remedial course for young children who are not classified as special education recipients in their own regular primary schools. They have not been assessed (yet) as having learning difficulties. Because of the Covid crisis of 2020-2, they often missed out on the "build-up to reading"programme taught in kindergartens here. Aged 7 to 8, they still could not read. Anat, head of the learning centre at the Neve Yosef Community Centre in Haifa, together with Hibat, the language teacher, decided they should help rectify the situation.
The Neve Yosef Community Centre caters for an ethnically and religiously multi-cultural population. It is physically situated between west Neve Shaanan and downtown Haifa, between a low socio-economic area and a very low socio-economic area. Parents whose children learn there usually cannot pay any or all of the fees for after-school remedial classes. Anat offered the course to all the local primary schools, requesting potential candidates. Then Hibat assessed their suitability. There are now 2 groups, each of 5 children, in the programme. Each group has lessons for two academic hours, one afternoon each week. We know this is not an ideal language learning situation, but were told that it is difficult for working parents to bring their children more frequently. We are hoping that the schools will co-operate with follow-up reading practice. It is likely that this would be possible with the help of volunteers. Let me know if you are in interested in becoming a Talia Trust volunteer in this programme. (Send a note to email@example.com)
Sincere thanks to you for helping our work to continue
Many thanks to all of you who have been donating so generously to The Barrie Greenson Memorial Project at Kfar HaNoar HaDati. We know that most of you, Barrie's family and friends, wish to remain anonymous . However, we would like to mention that, among the donors, are the brethren of Mt Carmel English Freemasons' Lodge whose contribution will pay for 75% of the first 10 week course for 20 children.
Last, but certainly not least, we are so grateful to all of you, our loyal supporters, who again have remembered the Talia Trust as a worthy charity for your end of the financial year contributions.
Wishing you a happy, healthy and successful 2023.