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Micah Liben - Director of Congregational Learning and Religious School Director

Rabbi Micah Liben is our Director of Congregational Learning and Religious School Director, in charge of our education and family programs from ages 3 – 93!

Rabbi Liben joins us following several years at the Gerard Berman Academy in Oakland and with outstanding experience in virtually all aspects of Jewish education. Rabbi Liben strives to bring Jewish text and tradition to life for students of all ages and backgrounds. We cannot wait for you and our young scholars to be inspired by his passion for Judaism. As part of our family, he will bring innovative, inspirational, and engaging learning to all.

Rabbi Liben has a BA in History from the University of Pennsylvania, an MA in Jewish Day School Education from the William Davidson School of Jewish Education, and was ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary, where he received the Masliansky Prize for Homiletics and the Pomerantz Prize for Congregational Education. In addition to Gerrard Berman Day School, he has taught and directed programs at the Solomon Schechter Day School of Bergen County, Kellman Brown Academy, Temple Adath Sharon, and several other day schools and congregational schools, and has been a frequent columnist in several Jewish newspapers, including the Jewish Standard.

Roni Shapiro - Director of Early Childhood

Roni Shapiro is Director of Early Childhood Education.

While she loves working with all age groups, her true passion is working with pre-school children, teachers and parents. Roni believes that families with young children are the future of Judaism and wants to guide them along the way to find their connection to Judaism.

Her philosophy of early childhood education and TEPV are almost identical. She believes that children learn best through a play-based, exploratory environment with loving teachers that are knowledgeable, especially in early childhood development. It is important to meet the suggested benchmarks that the New Jersey Department of Education has put forth, while respecting the emergent curriculum that comes from the children or by a chance happening.

A successful early childhood program should also include STEAM (science, technology, engineering and math), Children’s art as an expression of their individuality and the process by which they do so, social emotional development and mindfulness, music and art as an expression of individuality, language development. In all areas, and throughout their day Jewish values, middot are embedded to bring love of Judaism and develop empathy for others and our world.

Roni has a B.S. in Education from the University of Texas and both an M.A. in Jewish Education and a Principal and Supervision Certificate from the Jewish Theological Seminary. Prior to oining Temple Emanuel, she was the Educational Director of Congregation Sons of Israel in Briarcliff Manor, New York for 32 years. In that role, she over-saw the Nursery, Religious and Hebrew High Schools. Additionally, she ran family and youth programs. Roni met her husband Benny Ben-David while volunteering in the Israeli army and they have three sons, Eitan, Ari and Lior.

Mon, April 22 2024 14 Nisan 5784