Kevah: Glossary

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Kevah's Glossary - Key Terms Defined

Kevah – (spelled with an “h”) -
Kevah means a “set practice” and is the word used in rabbinic literature (Pirkei Avot 1:15) to describe how Torah study can be integrated into the life of each and every Jew, regardless of age, Jewish background, or sexual orientation and become a part of their everyday rhythms. R mar pic 0024 circle

Kevah Group (as opposed to a “Class”) – A micro-community of 12-18 people with a shared affinity principle (usually based on geographic location, shared interest, demography, or life stage) that gathers regularly (once or twice month) to study Jewish texts and be part of a community of Jewish learners. Kevah Groups are for Jewish learners of all ages and backgrounds who are interested in how Jewish texts can be relevant, meaningful and transformative.

Kevah Pilot Series Pilot series are convened by a Group Host and consist of three or four sessions on a specific topic. These series give community members a taste of the Kevah Group experience and help to elicit interest from potential participants. Pilot series are a great way to generate momentum for the eventual launch of standard Kevah Group.

Kevah Salon Salons are one-time learning sessions with a Kevah Educator designed to give community members a taste of the Kevah Group experience and elicit interest from potential participants. They can be a great way to identify potential Group Hosts and gain an understanding of the topic interests and schedules of potential participants.

Kevah Group Host – The organizer of a Kevah Group. Hosts choose an affinity principle for the Group, choose a topic of study, coordinate logistics such as time and meeting place, and act as liaison with Kevah staff. The most effective Group Hosts are either leaders or have excellent leadership potential. They have a convener personality, love bringing people together, and have a large network to draw from. Successful Group Hosts are also committed to Jewish learning and community building, have a sense of humor, can handle group issues that arise with poise, and have the time and ability to organize a group and stay in touch with Kevah staff.

Kevah Educator (as opposed to “Teacher”) Kevah Group facilitator who helps create meaningful dialogue around Jewish texts. Kevah has assembled an all-star team of great educators, including rabbis, day school teachers, professors, graduate students, and professional Jewish educators.  Although each educator has his or her particular teaching style, textual expertise, and topic preferences, Kevah Educators have gone through training with Kevah so that they serve as our ambassadors and create a tone and atmosphere that represents Kevah at its best. 

Kevah Group Participant (as opposed to “Attendee”) – A member of a Kevah Group who has made a commitment to join a Kevah Group and participates regularly.

Affinity Principle – Common/shared interest(s) e.g., geographic location, shared interest, demography, or life stage which brings the Kevah Group together.

Micro-community – A small community of learners that is formed among those in a Kevah Group. Our hope is that a Kevah Group becomes an ongoing micro-community for all of its participants.

Photographs by Laura Turbow