Kitah Vav/Sixth Grade and Kitah Zayin/Seventh Grade
A proud native of Newton, after growing up here I received my B.A. (Mathematics and Oriental/Semitic Studies) and M.S. in Education from the University of Pennsylvania, along with my B.H.L. from our very own Hebrew College. After working for a year at West Bridgewater Jr.-Sr. High School as a Mathematics teacher, I went back to Penn Law School, working along the way as a Hebrew High School teacher at Gratz College and Sinai Temple in Philadelphia. I also spent 8 summers at Camp Yavneh as a camper and counselor, and 7 summers as a counselor and teacher on the staff of Camp Ramah in New England.
After finishing law school, my travels really began. After a year and a half as the Endowment Director at the Jewish Federation of Delaware (and as the local USY advisor), I worked as a lawyer in Los Angeles, California for 12 years, while volunteering as the youth chair at our synagogue and chairing a local Aliyah organization. Giving in to my passion, my family and I then moved to Israel, living near Jerusalem for 4 years, where I again worked as a development professional, first as Director of Development for the Israel Association for Ethiopian Jews, and then as a development consultant for several Israeli educational, welfare and environmental non-profit organizations. Since returning to Newton in 2002 (who says you can't come home!), I have been practicing law at the McCormack Firm in Boston, as well as parenting two teenage daughters, supervising our synagogue's Israeli shlichim-youth staff, tutoring Bar/Bat Mitzvah students and raising money for Ethiopian Jewish projects in Israel.
My goals at Temple Reyim are to help my students develop an interest and passion for the whole range of Jewish experiences available to them, through studying Hebrew language, holidays, prayer and Israel. I hope to transmit to them the enthusiasm that I have for Jewish texts and traditions, Hebrew music and Israeli history and culture.
Judy Azer, "Morah Esther", has been teaching at Temple Reyim for many years, the last several as the shorashim (kindergarten and grade 1) teacher. She has taught in area religious schools for over thirty years. She has a bachelorÂ’s degree from Tufts University and a master’s in American history from Harvard. A former history and English teacher, she is currently a substitute elementary teacher in Stoughton. Keeping current on educational trends, Judy has taken many workshops on special education, differentiated learning, and Jewish themes, among others
This past year, Judy was chosen to take part in the CJP Technology and Teaching Fellowship. She has attended workshops and seminars to bring more technology to her classroom.
Judy enjoys working with young children because of their creativity and eagerness for learning. Her class reinforces the customs and rituals of the Jewish holidays and identity introduced at home. Classes include a story, art, interactive Torah lesson, Hebrew, time for exploration through centers, and music (which Judy often teaches her class). Judy aims to create a safe, exciting, and stimulating environment in which students enjoy learning. Her own enthusiasm is evident from her boker tov to each arriving student to l’hitraot as they leave.
Judy and her husband like to travel during the summer. Recent trips have taken them to the western U.S., Hawaii, Israel and Egypt, China, Australia, New Zealand, and much of Europe. She often visits Jewish sites, such as the Shanghai Jewish quarter from World War II and the Ben Ezra synagogue in Cairo. At her synagogue, Judy takes part in many activities such as adult education, Sisterhood board and book group, and volunteering.
Judy loves being part of the Temple Reyim community.