Torah Godly Play educators working with Rabbi

What Is a Community of Practice?

Communities of Practice, or CoPs, are groups of people who share a concern, a common set of problems, or a passion about a topic, and deepen their knowledge and expertise in this area by interacting on an ongoing basis. As I like to put it for our Network members: it is a subset of our Network that partners in a quest to learn about and thought partner on opportunities to innovate key elements of their schools, together, with the aim of raising the quality and ushering in the ‘new.’

CoPs don’t work together every day, but they meet because they find value in their interactions. As they spend time together, they typically share information, insight, and advice. They help each other solve problems. They discuss their situations, their aspirations, and their needs. They ponder common issues, explore ideas, and act as sounding boards. They may create tools, standards, generic designs, manuals, and other documents - or they may simply develop tacit understandings that they share. However, they accumulate knowledge, they become informally bound by the value that they find in learning together. This value is not merely instrumental for their work. It also accrues in the personal satisfaction of knowing colleagues who understand each other’s perspectives and of belonging to an interesting group of people. Over time, they develop a unique perspective on their topic as well as a body of common knowledge, practices, and approaches. They also develop personal relationships and established ways of interacting. They may even develop a common sense of identity. They become a community of practice.  

There are currently 18 different CoPs at BJE. To learn more about BJE CoPs  across Part-Time Jewish Education, Day School, Early Childhood and Teen Experiential educators click here.