New 'Art of Parenting' course looks at child-rearing from a Jewish perspective

Posted Thursday, Jan 8th, 2015

Beginning the week of Jan. 18, Portland-area parents will have the opportunity to join in a new parenting education course being rolled out nationwide by the Rohr Jewish Learning Institute of New York.

"The Art of Parenting," a six-week course, will have two Portland sessions: 9:30 to 11 a.m. Sundays at The Gan – Portland Jewish Preschool, 6612 S.W. Capitol Highway, and noon to 1:15 p.m. Wednesdays at The Dennison Capen Group, 919 N.E. 19th Ave., Suite 100.

"How do you strike the correct balance between discipline and freedom? This course answers these great questions by looking to the timeless teachings of the Torah," said Rabbi Zalman Abraham of the Rohr Jewish Learning Institute in a news release.

The course's Portland instructor is Rabbi Motti Wilhelm of Chabad of Oregon, the local affiliate of the Rohr Jewish Learning Institute. Wilhelm said Rohr developed the course in response to requests for applying timeless Jewish wisdom to real-life problems.

"The Art of Parenting," Wilhelm said, will tackle the essential question of "what does it mean to be a parent."

"The first class is most motivational to me," said Wilhelm, a parent himself. "That's the real question of being a friend or being an authority – I think that's the big struggle today."

Another class that stands out, Wilhelm said, is one on whether parents should impose their values when guiding their children in decisionmaking.

Wilhelm said he thinks parents who complete the course will walk away with "a stronger sense of what the role of a parent in their child's life is, how being a parent is different than any of the other relationships we have."

"They'll also be able to see themselves in the context of many thousands of years of wisdom and history," whether they're Jewish or not, he added. "I think that wisdom speaks to everybody and anybody."

The course is open to the public. Wilhelm encouraged those interested to audit the first class for free; spots can be reserved by emailing [email protected]. Cost for the whole course is $100.


More Stories