What is TALMA 2.0?

TALMA 2.0 is TALMA's year-long fellowship open to alumni of TALMA's flagship summer program as well as incoming 2020 Summer Fellows. Once we know you and are confident that you have what it takes to make a positive impact in our classrooms...2.0 is the opportunity to take your passion for Israel, Tikkun Olam, and TALMA to the next level. 

Our History

In August of 2017, TALMA 2.0's first year-long Community of Teachers launched in the development town of Mitzpe Ramon. Since then, more than two dozen TALMA teachers have called Mitzpe home - and from their base there, our teachers have served thousands of students spanning the communities of Dimona, Yeruham, Ramat Negev, and Mitzpe itself. 

After two years of positive impact in the Negev, in 2019, TALMA launched in two new communities - one focused on Israel's underserved geographic periphery, the other Israel's social periphery.


The Ben Shemen Youth Village:

just 30 minutes outside of Tel Aviv, the historic Ben Shemen plays home to a diverse group of students - some from broken homes, some secular outcasts of religious communities, others new immigrants seeking immersion into the Israeli way of life.


TALMA currently has six Fellows based at Ben Shemen where they serve grades 3-12 from their home base in the Village - fondly dubbed: The TALMAtats! The full year program at Ben Shemen will continue with 6 more Fellows in the 2020-2021 program year. You can read more about the experience at Ben Shemen here.

The Dead Sea Region:

teachers in the Dead Sea Region will join an effort to make the lowest place on earth the best place on earth! Experience life on a moshav overlooking the Dead Sea, teach in the beautiful but peripheral oasis town of Ein Gedi, and support students experiencing the challenges of growing up in one of Israel's most remote communities.

TALMA currently has six Fellows serving the children in Ein Gedi while based on a moshav in the Tamar Regional Council. The full year program at Ein Gedi is expected to continue in 2020-2021, and will be confirmed in the coming weeks.

The Full Year Experience

2.0 Fellows aren't just passing through a community for a summer, they are settling there for a year - and sometimes even testing the water for a more permanent move to Israel. Year-long Fellows receive housing with their own bedroom & cooking facilities in the heart of whichever community they are serving. Teachers in the program have all major costs-of-living covered by TALMA (housing, wi-fi, and program-related transportation), receive a generous living stipend of 57,750 NIS (approximately $16,000 USD), attend a weekly ulpan to support acclimation, and gain academic credits through Ben Gurion University and professional development through partners such as Relay Graduate School of Education. It's a chance to experience Israel like never before, while leaving your mark on a community eager and grateful for your teaching talents. Read on for details, interviews with full year alumni, answers to frequently asked questions, and more!

Hear from 2.0 Alumni



General Questions:

Q. Who is eligible to apply for TALMA’s Full Year Experience Program?


A. Currently, this opportunity is only open to TALMA alumni as well as Fellows accepted to the summer 2020 program. 

We hold the same qualifications for participation in 2.0 as we do for the summer, but look more deeply at the community fit to ensure that you are a good fit for the challenges of the program. We work to establish that this program is the right fit for you, your needs, and where you are at this point in your life. The full year experience requires a pioneering spirit - and we welcome our open hearted, open minded, and tough spirited alumni and summer acceptees with open arms!

Q. What is TALMA 2.0?

A. TALMA 2.0 is a year-long immersive professional development and service experience for the TALMA alumni community comprised of educators from around the world. Participants will be placed within a state-run school supported by the Israeli Ministry of Education, teach English to disadvantaged students, receive world-class professional development from the Relay Graduate School of Education and partner organizations and gain a unique social experience living in a community of teachers. The 2020-2021 Full Year communities  will include Ben Shemen and most likely the Dead Sea Region, with potential additional communities added throughout 2019.

Q. Where will TALMA 2.0 be based?


A. Fellows will work and live in either the area of the Tamar Regional Council or the Ben Shemen Youth Village.


Q. When does TALMA 2.0 take place for the 2020-2021 Program? 


A. The fourth year of TALMA 2.0 is scheduled to begin in August 2020 and continue through July of 2021.

Q. Why should I consider applying to TALMA?

A. The answer to this question is personal to you, but if you loved your experience with TALMA's Summer Fellowship, imagine the sort of magic that can be created with a whole year together! If you need a break from your current work or living situation, are seeking to reboot, step back to gain perspective, are contemplating aliyah, wish to reap the social benefits of our incredible community, the professional benefits of our unique professional development opportunities or seek the time and space for self-exploration in a supportive setting, this opportunity may be just what you've been waiting for!

Q. How can I afford to participate in TALMA for an entire year?


A. The Fellowship is a volunteer experience, however Fellows are provided with roundtrip airfare to Israel along with a generous stipend of ~$16,000 USD, PLUS, all major living expenses are covered including accommodation, transportation, health insurance and more.

Q. I'm interested! Where, when and how do I apply?

A. First of all, we are thrilled you are interested! Whether you are 100% ready to commit or are interested but still have questions, begin the process by filling out the form HERE and we'll be in touch! 

Q. My current school requires official documentation and/or my official acceptance letter before they will approve my leave or time-off for a sabbatical year, can you help?

A. Absolutely! Just email our admissions team HERE with the specifics or your request and we will work with you and your school to prepare you to join TALMA 2.0!


Questions on the Classroom Experience:

Q. How does the classroom experience from the summer program differ from the yearlong program? Will I have a co-teacher or teaching assistant?

A. One of the main differences between the summer and yearlong program is that you may not be sharing your classroom with an Israeli co-teacher. With your past summer experience with TALMA along with your professional experiences from the span of your career and the additional supports we will provide throughout the yearlong program, we are confident that you will rise to the challenge of leading a classroom on your own, while also having opportunities to provide small group support, push-in/pull-out instruction, and 1:1 learning.

That said, unlike the summer program, you will also not be with one class all day, but rather will float between several classes. Teaching assistants will be provided when possible, especially at the beginning of the year, and, in some cases, the regular classroom teacher may remain in the room as you lead the class, or share the class with you.

In certain circumstances, TALMA teachers will operate as push-in or pull-out teachers, working with individuals or small groups as a support, rather than as a lead teacher to a full classroom.

Q. What curricular supports will Fellows have?

A. Every district will have an English studies supervisor who will offer guidelines as well as a curriculum with objectives. That said, the supports you have beyond that could differ from school to school and class to class.

To counter that, TALMA will bring outside support in from the Relay Graduate School of Education as well as provide a TALMA specific orientation through the Israeli Ministry of Education. Additionally, Fellows will be connected to various online resources offering tools of support. The beauty of living in a community of TALMA teachers is that we can share resources amongst one another, creating our own system of support in addition to what the district and schools provide.


Q. If I get a teaching assistant in my room, how does that person differ from a co-teacher?

A. If your school provides you with a teaching assistant, this person does not necessarily share the same level of responsibility for your class as a co-teacher does during the summer program. A teaching assistant does not necessarily speak fluent English, though they may have some ability to help translate; their main role in the classroom is to assist with classroom management and serve as an additional adult presence in the room. Such individuals have no pedagogical responsibilities in the classroom, are not responsible to assist you with your lesson planning and are typically without formal training. Alternatively, if you are given a co-teacher, they will be your liaison to the school.

Q. What grade will I teach?

A. The full year program will operate in elementary, middle and high school classrooms in and surrounding the Tamar Regional Council and the Ben Shemen Youth Village We will do our best to match your skills and experience to an appropriate placement, but ultimately, placement will be determined by need and availability.


Q. What is the academic calendar for Israel?


A. The most straightforward answer is that we don’t honestly know all the details of the academic calendar for 2020-2021 because it is not yet released. That said, we do know the following approximations:

  • School begins around September 1st

  • School ends around June 20th for high schools and June 30th for elementary schools

  •  All Jewish holidays are off, and at Passover there is a three-week vacation.

  • An exemplar listing of dates for Jewish holidays from the 17-18 year can be found HERE.

Q. What are the expectations for Full Year Fellows with regard to grading?


A. Expectations for grading may differ from school to school and will be covered by the English Supervisor at your placement.


Questions on Professional Development Opportunities:

Q. I’m interested in gaining TOEFL certification prior to arriving in Israel, can TALMA help to cover the cost?


A. TALMA is all about raising the bar when it comes to bringing the best of the best teachers to Israel. If you are interested in receiving a TOEFL or TEFL certification, come to us with the pricing and details for your location and we will do our best to support you in obtaining the additional credentials prior to your arrival in Israel. The ability for TALMA to offer this support varies from year to year based on funding.


Q. What sort of formal professional development will I receive as part of TALMA?


A. There will be four core opportunities for formal professional development programming:

  1. A two week orientation with the Israeli Ministry of Education

  2. Ongoing trainings through the Relay Graduate School of Education or other PD partners

  3. Coursework through Ben Gurion University

  4. Ulpan - Hebrew immersion classes


A two week orientation with the Israeli Ministry of Education

In conjunction with TALMA, the Israeli Ministry of Education will be providing all Full Year Experience TALMA Fellows with a two week orientation. The Ministry of Education has developed an academic program of 30 hours of training specifically for teachers in our community. The training will take place in English with the purpose to transition and prepare TALMA fellows from the summer experience with a co-teacher to the full year experience of leading your own classroom. Fellows will receive a certificate of achievement to recognize the training hours upon their successful completion of the training.

Training through the Relay Graduate School of Education

Trainers from the Relay Graduate School of Education will provide on-the-ground and e-support to our Fellows through a combination of coaching, seminars and support focused on developing best practices through pedagogy, methodology and addressing personal areas of opportunity for growth.

Coursework through Ben Gurion University

In contrast to the teacher focused professional development, the partnership with Ben Gurion University of the Negev is an opportunity to gain additional, non-teacher centric enrichment. This opportunity offers Fellows the chance to gain academic credits as well as learn more about the people, region and interests of Israel. TALMA selects the first semester course, while the second semester involves a stipend to allow for personal choice.

Additionally, Ben Gurion University of the Negev is considered one of the best social scenes in the South of Israel, and gaining access to the University provides access to a community of young professionals and academics within the region, a socially enriching opportunity to make new connections. Fellows will be able to utilize campus resources such as the library and gym, as well as participate in the thriving social scene. Upon completion of coursework, Fellows will receive academic credit as well as an official letter from the University documenting their coursework.

Questions on the Living Situation:  


Q. Where is the TALMA Full Year Experience taking place?


A. The TALMA Full Year Experience is currently slated to take place in two living locations - The Dead Sea region and Ben Shemen Youth Village

Q. What can you tell me about the living locations?

A. Plenty! We are working to gather additional resources and will update this section shortly.


Q. Where specifically will Fellows live?


A. Due to security reasons, specifics of housing will provided to Fellows in a non-public forum.


Q. What sort of accommodation is provided for Fellows?


A. Fellows will each have their own room in a two or three bedroom apartment or 'tiny home'. A full kitchen along with a stipend to purchase supplies and access to additional amenities will be provided.


Q. How are roommates determined?


A. Fellows will be provided a preference form and may share up to three names as roommate requests. TALMA will do our best to match roommates to these preferences. Likewise, if there is a fellow who does not wish to share accommodation with a specific individual, such requests will be honored.

Q. What does the provided health insurance cover? What does it not cover?: 


A. TALMA provides fellows with a comprehensive medical health insurance plan. Dental plans are separate and are not provided. Pre-existing conditions are not covered. For those requiring specific information regarding a medication or prescription or availability of certain treatments, we can provide you with a copy of the insurance policy and the hotline phone number where you may direct questions.

Q. What meals will be provided? 

A. Meals are the responsibility of the participant, though a living stipend will be provided to subsidize these expenses.


Didn't Find The Answer To Your Question?

Email our admissions team at admissions@talmaisrael.com