Project LEAD

Learn. Engage. Adapt. Design.


As the leader, so the generation; as the generation, so the leader.

Talmud Yerushalmi, Arachim 17a

Project LEAD supports early childhood directors and their teams in deepening constructivist practices in their schools. A cohort of 12 schools began their journey in 2015 and participated in two years of focused conversations, seminars, ongoing executive coaching and on-site training to support teachers in the classroom. In Year II, participants chose between two study areas: Intentional Language or Emergent Curriculum. Both areas supported the underlying principle of honoring each child as a capable and competent individual. Over those two years Project LEAD cultivated the skills of emerging leaders and helped build directors’ capacities to drive change in their schools. Their work continues today.

The Project LEAD Network participants in 2017-2018 are continuing to lead a paradigm shift in their school toward Reggio-inspired teaching and learning which views and honors children as competent and capable. They are enhancing their ability to model and lead their staff to develop skills of intentional language, deep observation, documentation and co-constructed emergent curriculum. This year’s focus is on the integration of Jewish values that seamlessly permeate and drive the culture of the school and the experiences for children throughout the year. Participants are reading With Heart in Mind by Alan Morinis to guide their own personal connection to and understanding of Jewish values.  

Each school chooses two-four Jewish values to begin to integrate throughout their culture and share documentation of the changes occuring in their schools at each meeting.  

This network is being facilitated by Shellie Dickstein, Yael Kahn Pinto and Diana Ganger. Diana is an educational and leadership coach/consultant and past program director of JECEI.  Diana brings her expertise in group coaching and models intentionality, presence and embodies her love of Judaism.   


Read our Year 1 and Year 2 reflections:

Participating Schools:

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