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Parent and Teacher Guide

Teachers play Jewish Time Jump: New York.

Photograph by Ross Den, courtesy of the Covenant Foundation.


This guide is meant to provide parents and teachers with the necessary background information to help participants get the most out of playing Jewish Time Jump: New York. Because it provides answers to questions posed during the game, the guide should only be used by adults. Included in this guide are key terms and concepts, suggestions for how to best navigate the game, and questions to inspire conversation about the game.

Jewish Time Jump: New York lesson plans and activities were developed in partnership with ConverJent: Games for Jewish Learning and made possible with generous support from the Covenant Foundation.

Audience for Jewish Time Jump: New York

  • (Jewish) students in grades 5–7
  • Their parents and teachers

Background Information for Jewish Time Jump: New York

We strongly encourage you to play through the entire game before doing further reading on the topics it covers. Though you may have questions about the characters, ideas, or events in the game, the primary purpose of game play is to explore and learn as you go. If, after game play, you would like additional information on the two main events covered in the game, feel free to read the following articles from the Jewish Women’s Archive (please be advised that these articles contain game spoilers!).

Key Terms

Daily Forward (Forverts, in Yiddish): A Yiddish language newspaper popular among workers.

ILGWU: The International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union was founded in 1900 and served as the umbrella organization for local unions representing workers who made women’s clothing (dresses, hats, cloaks, etc.)—hence the name “Ladies’ Garment Workers.” The ILGWU was once one of the largest labor unions in the United States, one of the first US unions to have a primarily female membership, and a key player in the labor history of the 1920s and 1930s.

Organizer: Someone who brings people together to take action towards a common cause. In this case, organizers brought workers together to fight for safe and healthy work conditions and fair pay, and to address other important issues of the time.

Organizing: The process of building relationships and taking action together towards common goals. Both workers and owners organized within their communities to leverage power for their unique interests.

Shirtwaist: A blouse with the upper portion (the bodice and sleeves) fashioned like a man's shirt: with a turnover collar and buttons down the front. Though some were plain, others were embellished with embroidery, frills, and lace. A shirtwaist was the most popular fashion item among women at this time and became a symbol of femininity and independence during a time when many young women were embracing a new, autonomous lifestyle as industrial workers.

Shtarkers: A Yiddish word describing tough guys. These were often hired thugs sent to break up picket lines and intimidate workers who were striking.

Strike: An organized action by workers that causes work to be interrupted or stopped. A strike is usually an attempt to draw attention (from employers, the media, and the public) to workers’ grievances and garner a response that addresses workers’ demands for better pay, hours, etc.

Tammany Hall: A New York City political organization founded in 1786. It was the Democratic Party’s political machine that played a major role in controlling New York City and New York State politics and helped immigrants, most notably the Irish, rise up in American politics. Tammany Hall also served as an engine for political corruption, perhaps most infamously under William M. “Boss” Tweed in the mid-19th century.

The Call: English language newspaper popular among workers.

Tickets: Workers earned tickets for shirts or other parts of garments they made and traded them in to their foreman in exchange for pay. Use of tickets was problematic due to the fact that a worker might lose their tickets (many didn’t have pockets) and might not be able to collect their earnings despite having completed the work.

Workhouse: Jail

Basic Game Information and Helpful Hints

Here are a few hints to help you during game play. ConverJent also provides a complete technical manual for teachers and educators available through www.converjent.org (under “Get the Game”).

  • Jewish Time Jump: New York is only compatible with iPhones and iPads.
  • Jewish Time Jump: New York is an experiential game that uses GPS technology to trigger interactions and events as participants move from one location to another. If you are playing the game in New York City, then you should move through the locations as the game instructs.
  • Several of the sites visited throughout Jewish Time Jump: New York are the actual locations of historical events referenced in the game.
  • This game is based on the premise that players are traveling back in time from present day to the years 1909 and 1911.
  • In the first part of the game you will be introduced to a time machine named Hank. Hank will be your guide throughout the game process.
  • Game players take on the role of reporters for The Jewish Time Jump Gazette. Your assignment is to gather facts and different perspectives of people during this time.
  • In the 1.94 version of the platform used to play the game (called ARIS), you will have the following choices for clicking at the bottom of the screen:
    1. Nearby (only available after entering game play)
    2. Map
    3. Inventory
    4. Player
    5. Quest (under “More,” only available after entering game play)
  • Seek “targets” or “icons” on the map with which to interact. You may have to pinch and widen to find an icon.
  • Make sure to check the inventory section frequently. It will help you find clues.
  • Try the different garb available to you (in “Nearby”) and explore the park while wearing the garb of both workers and bosses.
  • Once you complete all of the questions in a series, then you can press “Leave Conversation.”

Conversation Starters

After you have played Jewish Time Jump: New York, you may want to talk about the events and ideas with your child or student. Here are some questions you can explore together to deepen your learning about this incredible part of history.

  • As an investigative reporter who travelled back in time, what would be the title of the story you brought to your editor? What do you think are the most important facts to include in your story?
  • Why do you think factory owners allowed their workers to work in dangerous conditions and for low pay?
  • Why do you think so many workers joined unions and went on strike?
  • If you were a garment worker in 1909, do you think you would have gone on strike? Why or why not?
  • Do you think it is important for kids your age to learn about these people and events? Why or why not?
  • Many of the characters in the game were Jewish. How do you think Judaism impacted them as workers or owners?
  • What questions do you have about the events and people in the game? How do you think we could learn more/find the answers to your questions?
  • How do you think the stories in the game relate to our world today?
  • How did playing this game make you think about your own life?

Please direct questions and feedback regarding the game to ConverJent: timejump AT converjent DOT org.

To view related lesson plans, interactive activities, traditional Jewish texts, and historical sources featuring the voices of Jewish workers and owners, please visit http://jwa.org/teach/jewishtimejump.

Jewish Time Jump: New York lesson plans and activities were developed in partnership with ConverJent: Games for Jewish Learning and made possible with generous support from the Covenant Foundation.


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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Parent and Teacher Guide." (Viewed on March 3, 2024) <http://jwa.org/teach/jewishtimejump/parent-guide>.