INTERESTS%3A+Mr.+Barishman+brings+a+love+for+3D+design+and+a+great+understanding+of+history+to+Shalhevet+this+year%2C+inside+and+outside+of+his+Modern+Jewish+History+classroom.+

BP Photo by Evan Beller

INTERESTS: Mr. Barishman brings a love for 3D design and a great understanding of history to Shalhevet this year, inside and outside of his Modern Jewish History classroom.

New Jewish History teacher loves reading and computer-aided architectural design

If you can’t find Mr. David Barishman, new 10th-grade Jewish History teacher, teaching, helping students or reading nonfiction about the past, you might find him designing homes.  

Designing imaginary buildings, from hotels to apartment buildings to island resorts, is one of Mr. Barishman’s hobbies. He uses a computer program called Chief Architect.

“Just whatever comes to mind — I just think of it and I design it,” said Mr. Barishman in an interview. “And what’s great about the program is that it’s 3D, so once you design the plan you can actually ‘walk’ into your building and see the rooms and everything else.”

My grandfather told me many stories about his life growing up in Vilna, Lithuania, and I have a great fascination to learn about it, understand it — just the life that they lived there.”

— Mr. David Barishman, Jewish History teacher

Mr. Barishman will be teaching two sections of sophomore Modern Jewish History this year. 

He moved to Los Angeles from Cape Town, South Africa, 20 years ago to teach Judaic studies and history at Pressman Academy. After that, he taught at various Jewish day schools around Los Angeles, along with 12 years in middle and high school history in the Los Angeles Unified School District.

Mr. Barishman loves reading about history and trying to understand the past. He gives credit to his grandfather for his interest in both teaching history and reading about it.

“I love reading non-fiction, I love reading Jewish history — about the events that take place over time, about how people have lived,” Mr. Barishman said. “I also have a great fascination in Eastern Europe because my grandfather told me many stories about his life growing up in Vilna, Lithuania, and I have a great fascination to learn about it, understand it — just the life that they lived there.”

“He greatly inspired me to enjoy learning about history and Jewish history and also the history of Israel, so he played a great influence in my interest in becoming a history teacher.”

For his Shalhevet students, Mr. Barishman said he plans to be available before and after class, by email and in any other way that would assist students.

“I really want them to succeed and to do well,” he said. “I want to do everything possible to help them be successful and to enjoy the class and to learn.”

He said his design hobby is just a hobby, but that it could influence his teaching. He recalled visiting a Tel Aviv museum called Beit Hatfutsot, where they have models there of synagogues around the world.

“That would be a very nice idea — to have [students] design a synagogue and then write up a history report about that specific synagogue,” Mr. Barishman said.

He is also planning on designing an airport, but he has yet to sell his designs or have them built, only doing it for fun.

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