Thank you for your interest in ParkMada, a state-of-the-art indoor/outdoor science exploration and discovery center that when built will teach innovative science education through a Jewish lens. Designed and established with the input of a team of young-adult Ramah leaders studying and working in the science, technology, engineering, and Jewish education fields, ParkMada will be a permanent facility at the Ramah Day Camp in Nyack, NY, available for summer camp use and educational programs for the broader community. By focusing on the fascinating nexus of scientific principles and Jewish learning, Ramah will provide campers with an inspiring introduction to scientific learning while helping them to understand the compelling relevance of Jewish tradition and heritage in modern life.
ParkMada will include a full redesign and renovation of Keren Or, a 3,200-square-foot facility that has been closed in recent years due to required structural repairs. Groundbreaking will take place at the start of our Annual Dinner on Tuesday, July 16th, 2019 at 6:30 PM.
Shalva Sensory Room
Shalva will provide children experiencing anxiety, stress and challenges with self-regulation in the camp environment with a tranquil, quiet room and professional staff who can meet with them until they are able to rejoin their group/activity. The sound-protected space will include special lighting with dimmer switches, foam mat flooring, a ceiling covered by a sensory canopy and appropriate equipment and toys. Initial capital provided by a generous grant through Foundation for Jewish Camp’s Yashar Initiative, a program funded by The Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation.
Gan Muzika: Music Garden
In our outdoor music and sound play facility, campers will create music on beautifully designed large instrument installations that are durable, sustainable, and perfectly tuned. Within this musical oasis, campers will learn about sound waves and harmonic tones as well as reenact the crossing of the Red Sea with Miriam and discuss the Jewish value of choosing our words carefully.
Gan Chalomot: Garden of Dreams
In this creative, “messy” outdoor space, campers will be challenged to dream big, create master plans and work together to build large structures. They will utilize a variety of materials including large pvc pipes, swaths of canvas, car tires, wood dowels and planks. Campers will learn engineering principles and then be challenged to build a kosher sukkah and Abraham and Sarah’s welcome tent.
Merkaz Mada: Science Center
The heart of ParkMada is our indoor central science hall including a large lab, work stations and countertop seating. In this space, children will design a variety of experiments including the making of tchelet (azure) dye, creating havdalah candles and understanding the melting properties of wax. Campers will bake challot, learning the chemical formula of yeast, and they will compost while discussing the Jewish value of Bal Tashchit (the ethical imperative not to waste).
Chadar Kirot: Walls of Wonder Room
In this colorful room of wonder, campers will explore principles of light and shadow. The room will have colored lights, mirrors and a variety of screens to teach these concepts. Campers will design shadow puppet plays of Jewish tales, construct pixel drawings of famous Jewish personalities and use mirrors as a springboard to discuss concepts of body image and Jewish attitudes towards health and wellness.
Chadar Yetzirah: Makerspace
This indoor center, complete with a strong magnetic/steel pegboard wall, small pvc pipes, ping pong balls, marbles, foam noodles, connectors, etc. will be designed for our Rube Goldberg enthusiasts! As campers work together to design their machines and learn principles of physics, they will also explore the ethical concepts of Kehillah (community), inclusion and the value of individual contributions.The room will also be used to teach prayers for appreciation of the wonder of God’s creation (Mah Rabu) and the wonder of that which we create with our own devices (Shehecheyanu).
Chadar Omanut: Art of Science Room
A space for campers to challenge themselves as they work to solve math and science puzzles, design cartoons, use microscopes or design a tallit on a giant wall loom. Older campers will build small appliances and learn about solar power advancements in Israel.