Welcome to the Hidden Sparks 2020 Virtual Summit!

Hidden Sparks is proud to be collaborating with Bank Street Education Center to help you, your colleagues, and schools across the country prepare for a smooth and impactful return to school. Also, featuring Monica Levy, Ed tech specialist who will also provide guidance to us during the the summit!

DATES: July 21-23, 27-29

TIMES: 9:00AM – 12:30PM ET

Pre-Summit Videos

Thank You To Our Sponsors

Thank you to The George Rohr Foundation for sponsoring this Summit.


Thank you to LI Tech for sponsoring the Tech Support for this Summit.

Email Zoom@litechadvisors.com for tech support during the summit.


And thank you to CIJE and SHEMESH for their collaboration.

Daily Agendas with Resources

Day 1: SEL  at the Core of Academic Instruction

With the Bank Street Education Center

Guiding Questions:

  • What is the whole child approach to teaching and learning?
  • In our role, what steps can we take to integrate social emotional learning with academics?

Day 1 Agenda with Links

The Agenda includes links to the materials that will be used each day. Please print the agenda as well as the items that are listed in the agenda with an asterisk, in advance of each session.


Monica’s Ed Tech Resources – 1

Day 2: Relationship and Intention Matter

Guiding Questions:

  • What mindsets and beliefs do teachers and leaders need to hold in order for students to successfully engage in meaningful learning?
  • What is the instructional core and how does it help us discuss intentional relationships and interactions with students?
  • How can an understanding of development support us in understanding and addressing children’s unique needs?



Day 2 Agenda


Monica’s Ed Tech Resources – Day 2

Day 3: Apart Together, Part 1

Cultivating Community and Engagement in the Age of COVID-19: 

Reckoning with the Elephant in the Room

With Lily Howard Scott

Guiding Questions:

  • How can educators support students’ emotional responses to the pandemic?
  • Why do children need to feel uniquely known and understood in order to bring their full selves and full effort to school each day?



Day 3 Agenda With Links to Strategies & Resources


Monica’s Tech Resources – Day 3


Day 3: Apart Together, Part 2

Cultivating Community and Engagement in the Age of COVID-19: 

Reckoning with the Elephant in the Room

With Lily Howard Scott


Guiding Questions:

  • How can classroom teachers cultivate a socially distanced or remote classroom community in which students feel engaged and invested enough to persevere through social, emotional, and academic challenges?
  • What does classroom management look like in the age of COVID-19?

Day 4 Agenda with Links


Mood Meter


Lily’s Hand Motions


Monica’s Tech Resources – Day 4

Day 5: Meaningful Content and Experiences, Part 1

With the Bank Street Educational Center

Guiding Questions:

  • What do developmentally-meaningful learning experiences look and sound like?
  • How can we begin to integrate these opportunities into our teaching and leadership practice?

Day 5 Agenda

Day 6

Meaningful Content and Experiences: Part 2

Hollis Dannaham, M.Ed., Hidden Sparks coach and facilitator, has been empowering complex learners for 30 years. She created Transform Boundaries, to help schools create programs and creative solutions for  their complex learners,  served as the Director of Academic Intervention at Explore Charter School, co-created a high school for at-risk teens, and  worked as a learning specialist for All Kinds of Minds.

Faye Friedman has been practicing as a certified, licensed speech and language pathologist since 1991,  and has developed expertise in the area of language and literacy.  She is a certified provider for several reading programs such as Fast ForWord, Phonographix, Lindamood Bell (V&V and LiPs) and Read Naturally. She was the Educational Director for the Weinberg Academy for four years and currently holds the position of Program Director for SHEMESH. 

Davia Brown Franklyn, M.S. Ed, is the Senior Director of Partnerships for the Bank Street Education Center (BSEC), in her role she supports district-wide initiatives in examining their vision and change management structures to offer intentional professional development to improve instructional practices in early childhood settings. Franklyn’s 20-year career has centered on the critical work of building quality learning environments in under-resourced communities and coordinating professional development programs for teachers, community based organization leaders and community college faculty.

Monica  holds a Master’s degree from Bank Street and is currently the Lower School Technology and Design Teacher at the Dwight School. Early in her career, she was a pre-school teacher at Hebrew Academy of the Five Towns and Rockaway and then she shifted in to their educational technology team, after which she worked at Ramaz Lower School as the education technology specialist. Prior to her current position, she worked as the Educational Technology Consultant at DigitalJLearning, of The Jewish Education Project.

Rabbi Dr. Uriel Lubetski has over twenty years of experience in education, with fifteen years as a principal in a variety of Middle Schools and High Schools in the US. Today, he serves as the Director of Education in Sulamot, writing curricula in Mishna and Halacha for  schools around the world. Rabbi Dr. Lubetski earned his doctorate from Azrieli School of Jewish Education and Administration at Yeshiva University in Applying Project Based Learning to Tanach.

Sara Reichman, PhD, a  clinical psychologist in private practice, serves as a Hidden Sparks coach. She holds a doctorate from the Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology of Yeshiva University, and served as Senior Psychologist at New York University Medical Center, where she gained extensive experience working with children and families and was part of a multidisciplinary team that performed neurodevelopmental evaluations. 

Andrea taught for 33 years before joining the Hidden Sparks team as a coach and facilitator. She  taught emotionally fragile children with special needs, and served as a teacher-trainer for special education.  Andrea received a Bank Street Early Childhood Education award, and  was a  facilitator for the Schools Attuned Program of All Kinds of Minds. 

Jared Scheck holds a BA in Psychology from Boston University, and a MA in Politics and Education from Teachers College, Columbia University.  Jared has dedicated his career to advancing educational equity for all students. Prior to his time with The Education Center of Bank Street College, Jared has worked in Boston as a paraprofessional, and as a coordinator for an after-school college access non-profit.

Lily Howard Scott, MS, is a teacher and curriculum developer  and graduate of Northwestern University and Bank Street College of Education.  She is particularly interested in designing curriculum that weaves together social, emotional, and academic learning and her writing about the importance of a child-centered, holistic approach to teaching and learning has been published in The Washington Post

Molly Warner is a Hidden Sparks coach who has been involved in education for 38 years.  She holds  Master’s degrees in Special Education from the Bank Street College of Education, and from  Teachers College in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages.  Molly was a classroom teacher at the Dalton School, facilitator for All Kinds of Minds, and  the middle school learning specialist at The School at Columbia University. 

Claire Wurtzel,  taught in Bank Street College School of Education for 18 years and served as Chair of the Department of Special Education. Subsequently, she served as the Director of Faculty Development for the Churchill School and Center in New York and later, and as the Director of Faculty Development for the New York City Schools Attuned initiative for All Kinds of Minds. As one of two educational directors for Hidden Sparks, Ms. Wurtzel helped develop the training and curricula and provides ongoing facilitation, supervision and mentoring to Hidden Sparks coaches and school leaders.

Sara Diament, Director of School Services, holds a Master’s degree in Health and Behavior Studies from Teacher’s College, Columbia University and a Master’s in Jewish History from Yeshiva University. Prior to Hidden Sparks, she worked with at-risk youth for Youth Advocate Programs Bergen County,  ran a psycho-educational program for adolescents at the Somerset Women’s Health Center, and developed, led anti-bullying workshops for students, teachers and parents  through the Jewish Women’s Foundation,  and served as a consultant to Jewish day schools on health curriculum development. 

Elizabeth Fox, Ed.M., Director of Education, previously served as a professional development advisor for the Center for the Professional Education of Teachers at Teachers College, Columbia University and as the Director of Community Programs for Outward Bound where she created an organizational development program for school leaders. In both roles she was able to apply cutting-edge research to challenges of school culture, curriculum, instruction and assessment faced by a range of public schools. Ms. Fox has also designed and facilitated workshops on project-based learning and school reform. She is currently a doctoral student in English Education at Columbia University.

Debbie Niderberg, Executive Director, helped launch Hidden Sparks, from conceptual development to its present size and worked collaboratively to design its unique programming, and build the organization’s infrastructure and professional leadership. She is also responsible for developing new initiatives, such as Hidden Sparks Without Walls, and new programmatic and funding partnerships. Prior to coming to Hidden Sparks, Ms. Niderberg served as the Executive Director for The Nash Family Foundation, and co-founded the Jewish Children’s Learning Lab, an interactive Jewish children’s museum in New York and managed the Outreach and Special Projects division for the Fund for Jewish Education.  She was selected for participation in the Maoz-Advot program for educational leaders. She is the grateful mom of 6 children (and a son-in-law).

Thank You

Thanks to our Leadership Advisory Board for helping us plan our Learning Summit:

Mr. Richard Altabe, Lower School Principal, Hebrew Academy of Long Beach

Mrs. Barbara Deutsch, Associate Principal, Hebrew Academy of Nassau County West Hempstead

Ms. Ruth Gafni, Head of Nursery – Grade 8, The Ramaz School

Dr. Rafi Kalman, Incoming Principal, Solomon Schechter School of Queens

Rabbi Jeffrey Kobrin, Head of School, North Shore Hebrew Academy

Rabbi Yaakov Sadigh, Principal, Hebrew Academy of Nassau County West Hempstead

More Information

To find out more ways in which Hidden Sparks can support your school, please reach out to Sara Diament, Director of Hidden Sparks sara@hiddensparks.org