True teachers are those who use themselves as bridges over which they invite their students to cross; then, having facilitated their crossing, joyfully collapse, encouraging them to create their
own.” ― Nikos Kazantzakis

She lives in a pretty regular neighborhood. It’s nice. She’s in her mid-forties and is a Moroccan Jew. Her husband, Sasha, is a lovely fellow, an only child, a protector, originally from Serbia. She herself comes from an enormous family who “love hard“. Really hard. They loved me hard.

She’s someones daughter. She’s many people’s friend and her name is Rachel MamannThe thing is, she is a superstar kindergarten teacher. That’s what I say And I do because I’ve known Rachel for a long time and I’ve learned how she thinks, how she behaves. She is what we would call, ‘out of the box’. I remember how my old, dear friend once had a sick tropical fish and she plopped a Tylenol into the aquarium. The fish got better. I tried that years later. My fish died.

Rachel whispers in conversation, to get your attention, but more so to create peace. She comes from loud. She said in this interview, “I always want more friends.” And then added that the idea of managing friendships is nonsense because friendships are not to be managed.

Like a kindergarten student’s own perception of life, Rachel describes her love for Sasha, like the sky. “It’s like the ocean”.  You mean it’s vast?  She smiled, a beautiful smile. And I detected tears of appreciation in her eyes.

“I don’t generally have to work loving someone.” – Rachel Mamann

I believe Rachel is one of those teachers we’ll talk about. I say this because her approach to teaching four, five and six year old children is organic. It is routed in love. I said to her, “you know how to love”. Her response: “I was loved”. I pushed the point and Rachel responded: “there’s a lot to love”. 

Rachel closes the door of her classrooms and dances with the children. If someone won’t dance, “then we all hurt. It’s like family”. If one child in her classroom hurts another one, they form a circle, and talk it out.  It’s what the Natives have taught us. Restorative justice.

Rachel stated in episode 29 of Hatradio!, “We really, really, really need to know how incredible their (the children’s) minds are. We dumb things down and that is wrong. I make an effort to not do that.” She says that when the school year is over, and she and the students part, “it is horrible“.

I said “horrible“. She said “yes“. I asked her if I could join her class. I don’t care that I have to go back to kindergarten. She smiled and said, “join us“. I might.

Rachel concludes: “I hope I taught (my students) to be mindful of others. To care about themselves and others.”  I believe she has.

I loved doing this interview with my old friend. Hopefully you’ll enjoy listening. It is very special. Let me know your thoughts at

Rachel Mamman, the superstar teacher on Hatradio! The show that schmoozes.  

“One child, one teacher, one book, one pen can change the world.” 
― Malala Yousafzai, I am Malala: The Story of the Girl Who Stood up for Education and Was shot by the Taliban.


Thank you to David Nefesh for the show’s intro song and extro. And thanks as well to Howard Pasternack for her post-production work. They make the show something special!

Music in Commercial:
“Slow Burn” by Kevin MacLeod (
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0

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