Around the Middle Eastern Jewish World

This lesson has been developed by Jimena with the aim to provide students with a geographic snapshot of world Jewry, past and present – with emphasis on Sephardic and Middle Eastern Jewish migration.

The Forgotten Refugees

This unit has been developed to introduce students to the narrative of the Jews from Arab countries – primarily for students in high school – by viewing The Forgotten Refugees video which explains the forced mass exodus of Jews from Arab lands in the early 1950s. An art activity will deepen their understanding of the refugee experience and promote empathy for what it means to be a “stranger”.

Passport to Peoplehood

The Persian Jewish community is one of the world’s oldest diaspora communities with a rich and complex culture. The status of Jews in Persia/Iran from ancient times through to today is tied to the outlook of its leaders. When the leaders were tolerant of religious minorities, Persian Jews thrived, when they were intolerant of religious minorities the Jewish population suffered. Today, the majority of Persian Jews live outside of Iran but continue to celebrate their unique and rich Persian heritage.

This activity takes you to a slideshow that details the History of Persian Jewry.

The Cairo Genizah

A genizah is a depository for discarded religious texts. Genizah’s are most commonly found in attics of basements of synagogues. One of the most famous genizahs was found in Cairo, Egypt untouched for centuries, its contents hidden until their later rediscovery.

This activity will take students through the process of learning and understanding about a community by studying what was once hidden.