Marcie Abramson teaches ED 105a Structure, Concepts, and Best Practices in Mathematics: Elementary as well as MATH 3A Explorations in Mathematics. She has extensive experience teaching elementary, middle and high school students. She is also the author and co-author of several mathematics books for students in grades 5-8.
Marcie was elected to the Massachusetts Mathematics Teacher Hall of Fame in 2018.
Howie Baker is executive director of the Lemberg Children's Center and the early education and care component and supervisor for practicum students. His 46-year career at Brandeis and in early education policy and practice has been to support learning together, inclusion of children with diverse educational needs, parent-school collaborations, standards of care, reflective practice and leadership. He is co-president of the Council of Child Development Lab Schools and director of the American Psychological Associations' ACT Raising Safe Kids Boston Regional Center, a violence prevention and parenting education program.
Jennifer Cleary is a senior lecturer in theater arts and teaches courses in stage management, public speaking, creative pedagogy and theater for social change. She received her EdM in arts-in-education from Harvard University and serves as the field supervisor/content instructor for theater arts student teachers at the secondary level. Previously, she has stage-managed professionally with the New Repertory Theatre, Worcester Foothills Theatre, Fredericksburg Theatre Company, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Encompass New Opera Theatre and Gloucester Stage.
Sharon Feiman-Nemser is the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Professor of Jewish Education emerita. Since coming to Brandeis in 2000, she founded the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Center for Studies in Jewish Education and the DeLeT Fellowship which evolved into the MAT program with concentrations for public school and Jewish day school teachers. She also co-directs the Brandeis Teacher Leadership Program. A former high school English teacher, Feiman-Nemser is a scholar of teacher education and learning to teach. A collection of her writings, "Teachers as Learners," was published by Harvard Education Press.
Leah Gordon holds a joint PhD in history and education from the University of Pennsylvania. She has particular interests in the history of education, intellectual history, the relationship between social science and social policy, and ideas about race, class and inequality in modern America. Gordon's first book, "From Power to Prejudice: The Rise of Racial Individualism in Midcentury America" (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2015), received the 2016 Linda Eisenmann Prize from the History of Education Society. Gordon is currently working on "Imagining Opportunity: Education and Equality in Modern America" (under contract with the University of Chicago Press), a history of the idea that schooling can equalize the social and economic structure. She has received awards and fellowships from the Spencer Foundation, the National Academy of Education, the American Council of Learned Societies and Stanford University's Center for Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity.
Ziva R. Hassenfeld is the Jack, Joseph, and Morton Mandel Assistant Professor in Jewish Education at Brandeis University. She studies reading comprehension from a sociocultural perspective, focusing on how children develop interpretations of the Hebrew Bible as a case of student reading development. She uses a variety of qualitative methods including ethnographic observation, stimulated recall interviewing, and think-aloud interviewing. Her research lab is called Student-Centered Religious Learning and Literacy (SCRoLL Lab.
These investigations connect her to the worlds of biblical hermeneutics, both contemporary and rabbinic, as well as literary theory and criticism. Her recent publications can be seen here. In addition to her research, Ziva is a passionate educator. She has taught Hebrew Bible in a variety of settings, including at JCDS, Gann Academy, Genesis/BIMA at Brandeis, Silicon Valley Beit Midrash, Stanford Hillel, Congregation Beth Jacobs, and Congregation Emek Beracha. She is a Wexner Fellow and Davidson Scholar, Class '25.
Shira Horowitz is currently a coach and a course assistant in the AGS EdM program. She co-taught ED 264a Foundations of Education, a course taken during the first summer of the public elementary and Jewish day school concentrations of the MAT. Horowitz spent many years teaching kindergarten and first grade in a Jewish day school in the Boston area. She also worked as a mentor teacher and field instructor in the Jewish day school concentration of the MAT Program from 2002 to 2021.
Danielle Igra's research areas include the Pedagogy of Teacher Education and the Teaching of English Language Arts. She currently teaches Introduction to Teaching and Learning, Pedagogy of English, Student Voice and Discourse. She advises students who are taking the Teacher Education pathway to secondary school licensure. Before coming to Brandeis, Igra worked at Stanford University, where she also earned a PhD in teacher education, an MA in English, and an MA in teaching. Igra taught high school English for nine years in public schools and has taught in graduate programs in secondary, elementary and early childhood education. As a teacher development and research consultant, she has worked in the fields of literacy, large scale assessment, higher education and Jewish education.
Jody Klein brings more than 25 years of experience in education as a teacher, program director, curriculum developer and trainer. She has taught pre-service and in-service education courses to teachers from pre-K through the university level, often around topics related to English Language Learning. She currently works for Newton Public Schools and as a consultant for Research for Better Teaching. Klein’s beliefs about access and achievement for all students are what fuel her work in and out of the classroom.
Jonathan Krasner's 2020 book, “Hebrew Infusion: Language and Community at American Jewish Summer Camps” (Rutgers University Press), co-authored with Sarah Bunin Benor and Sharon Avni, was the recipient of the 2020 National Jewish Book Award in Education and Jewish Identity. His 2011 book, “The Benderly Boys and American Jewish Education” (Brandeis University Press), was the winner of the 2011 National Jewish Book Award in American Jewish Studies. He was named as a 2012 finalist for the Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature.
In addition to the history of American Jewish education, his research interests include the teaching and learning of Jewish history and social studies, Jewish youth, and Jews and sexuality. His articles have appeared in a variety of academic journals and edited collections.
Marya R. Levenson is Professor of the Practice in Education and Director Emerita of the Education Program. She was a teacher in the Boston Public Schools, principal of Newton North High School, and superintendent of the North Colonie Schools. She is the founder of the Brandeis Education Studies Program and co-director of the Teacher Leadership Program. Levenson is the author of Pathways to Teacher Leadership: Emerging Models, Changing Roles.
Jon A. Levisohn serves as director of the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Center for Studies in Jewish Education. He has taught in middle school and has worked with educators in multiple settings.
Jed Lippard currently serves as the Chief Learning Officer at Buckingham Browne & Nichols School in Cambridge. In this role, he oversees teaching and learning, curriculum and instruction, adult growth and development, and educational innovation PreK-12. Prior to joining BB&N, Jed served as the Dean of Children's Programs and the Head of the School for Children at the Bank Street College of Education in New York City. Previously, he spent more than two decades teaching and leading in two innovative public charter schools in Massachusetts. Jed holds doctoral and Master’s degrees from the Harvard Graduate School of Education and a Bachelor’s degree from Brown University. His research focuses on differentiated instructional leadership for adult growth and development in schools.
Kathy Lobo, a full time ESL teacher in Newton Public Schools, currently co-teaches the Supplemental Practicum Internship: ESL. With degrees in fine art and multicultural education she has taught in various contexts as a K-12 classroom teacher, including public and private schools in the United States, and in international schools overseas. She is past president of MATSOL, the Massachusetts TESOL affiliate, and she has been actively involved in planning TESOL conventions since Boston TESOL 2010. In March 2018 she began a three-year term on TESOL International’s Board of Directors. She is a life-long language learner (Mandarin Chinese and Japanese) and an artist. In the 1980’s she attended the Tianjin Fine Art College as a one-for-one international exchange student between the sister cites of Tianjin and Philadelphia.
Currently a math coach in the Cambridge public schools, Nili Pearlmutter is also a Lecturer in Education at Brandeis. She taught in the first summer of our Teacher Leadership Program and also taught the Fundamentals of Teaching course for the MAT/Jewish Day School concentration (aka DeLeT) program. Nili received her B.A. in Psychology from Yale University and her Master of Science in Teaching from Wheelock College. She taught at the elementary level in both Jewish day schools and public schools before coming to Brandeis in 2003. In her time at Brandeis, Nili has worked with pre-service and novice teachers on instruction, supported mentors and field instructors in developing teacher educator skills, and coached school leaders as they developed a professional culture, systems, and structures that promote teacher learning.
Desiree Phillips has been teaching workshops about special education at Brandeis for a number of years and began teaching a moderate disabilities course in 2015. She has worked for the Cambridge Public Schools since 2006 and is deeply invested in the lifelong success of students with disabilities. She was a special educator in both general education and substantially separate settings for 10 years, followed by two years as a lead teacher, and most recently is the coordinator for high school, upper school, and out-of-district.
Phillips has special education experience in rural and urban education settings in grades K-12. She has presented at National Science Teachers’ Association conferences and contributed to the “Differentiated Instruction” portion of the Active Physics textbook series.
Joseph Reimer has been at Brandeis since 1986. During his tenure at the university, he has been director of the Hornstein Program and the Institute for Informal Jewish Education. Trained as a developmental psychologist, he has written several books and many articles on moral education, kibbutz education and Jewish education. He is considered by many as a leading expert on experiential Jewish education.
Aviva Scheur teaches ED 253 Improving Teaching and Learning in the Classroom and serves as a coach in the Brandeis Teacher Leadership Program. Previously, she worked as the Shin Shin supervisor for the Combined Jewish Philanthropies in Boston, as education director at several synagogues, and as the head of the Tanakh department and leader of professional development at Gann Academy. Aviva has taught Pedagogy of Tanakh in the Brandeis MAT Program, presented at many conferences on teaching and learning and is a contributing author to The Power of Teacher Rounds: A Guide for Facilitators, Principals, and Department Chairs, by Vivian Troen and Katherine C. Boles.
Margery Sokoloff is the associate director of the Teacher Leadership Program and a field instructor for secondary English teachers in the MAT program. Sokoloff has worked as an educator since 1989 and as a teacher educator since 2006, when she joined the faculty of the Bread Loaf School of English. She has taught English at the high school and college levels in Miami and Boston. Sokoloff holds a BA and PhD in English literature from Yale University.
Rachel Kramer Theodorou has been a classroom elementary and ESL teacher for more than 20 years in both public and private schools. Alongside her practical work, Rachel consults with Waltham Public Schools, MATSOL, EDCO and the Waltham Family School on matters ranging from instructional practices for teaching English Learners, to promoting ESL teacher leadership in professional development, and in methods for forging productive family relationships between school and home.
Derron Wallace is a sociologist of education whose research interests include global perspectives on urban education, comparative and international education, black ethnic relations, and disability studies. He recently received his PhD from the University of Cambridge, where he was a Marshall and Gates Cambridge Scholar. Previously, he worked as a community organizer and consultant with Local Educational Authorities in London. Wallace currently teaches ED 170a Critical Perspectives in Urban Education.
Specializing in urban politics at the intersection of race, gender, and class, Tanishia Lavette Williams obtained a Ph.D. from the Public and Urban Policy program at the Milano School of International Affairs, Management, and Urban Policy at The New School. Broadly, Tanishia’s research examines curriculum adoption (namely Culturally Responsive Pedagogy), policy, and educational disparities with a focus on the achievement and life outcomes of Black students. Based on her experience as a superintendent, executive director, principal, and teacher in school systems undergoing extensive reform, Tanishia’s focus on education aims to connect praxis and theory. Her contributions to school-based pedagogues and contemporary literature leverage the historicity of race relations within the law to modern policy and infrastructures that impact public education. In essence, Tanishia’s scholarship examines how racism permeates systems through existing legal structures that buttress the subordination of minorities through racialized hierarchies. Her current multi-sited research exposes the varied tensions, contradictions, inclusions, and exclusions that co-exist in public education, focusing on a specific anti-racist intervention meant to increase student achievement among the marginalized.
“I really like my professors. They have great energy and so much teaching expertise. I can tell how deeply they care about our learning. In class sometimes we’ll have these little "meta” moments where we’re thinking about the strategies they’re using to teach us and it’s really cool because we get to talk about how the strategies that we’re experiencing are the same things that we can use in our classrooms for our own students.”
Elyse Hahn, MAT'21