Educator Awards 2017

Sam Kahan Distinguished Educator/ Grinspoon Award for Excellence in Jewish Education

This award was established by the family of Sam Kahan in order to honor Sam for his many years of community leadership. This award perpetuates Sam’s legacy of personal commitment to Jewish education and to strengthening Baltimore’s Jewish educational institutions. The recipient is a master Jewish educator who serves as an inspiration to both students and peers and is also our community’s nominee for the national Grinspoon Award for Excellence in Jewish Education.

Sam Kahan/Grinspoon Award Recipient 2017:
Toby Kaplowitz, Beth Tfiloh Dahan Community School


“I try to create powerful experiences throughout the day for my students - balancing the skills and knowledge they should have as educated Jews along with the actions and experiences to hopefully last a lifetime. I want to show how young children can do, learn and understand deeply and in a meaningful way. I don’t ever want to limit them in any way. I believe that young students can be challenged with big ideas. Over the course of my teaching career, I have taught all ages and stages- from first graders to middle school, high school, college, and adults. I can’t help but feel my face brighten and a huge smile come across my face when I describe how much I love teaching kitah aleph. There is an extraordinary, almost magical experience in my classroom that is hard to put into words. This small window of time in a child’s life, when they are open to anything, ready with a contagious enthusiasm to learn everything while having little to no inhibition or self-doubt is absolutely thrilling as an educator! My students’ curiosity is beyond compare and it drives me as a teacher to expose them to as much as I can every day.”
-Toby Kaplowitz

“Mrs. Kaplowitz is a big thinker who often collaborates with specialists and other teachers to create innovative projects. She follows the latest trends in technology and education and is thoughtful about sharing with others and trying things out with her students.  Mrs. Kaplowitz came to us as a Judaic studies teacher. She now teaches all day, educating her students in both general and Judaic studies. She is very skilled at community building and naturally engages her students and their parents in activities that bring them closer to Judaism, the general studies curriculum and the BT community. Mrs. Kaplowitz integrates both curricula seamlessly, helping her students make connections and deepen their understanding of the world around them. Using Jewish text and experiences, as well as technology and aspects of project based learning, she enhances the engagement of her children. Creating a warm, caring, developmentally appropriate and stimulating milieu, Mrs. Kaplowitz's classroom is a delight to see.”
- Nina Wand, Lower School Principal

CJE is an agency funded by THE ASSOCIATED: Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore.